Regina Smalls Baker, MSW, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Sociology

Curriculum Vitae
Personal Website:


Ph.D. Sociology, Duke University 2015
M.A. Sociology, Duke University, 2012
M.S.W. Social Work, University of Georgia, 2009
B.A. Sociology, Program in Leadership & Community Service, Mercer University, 2007

Research Description: 

My research is fundamentally concerned with how micro- and macro- contexts create, maintain, and reproduce poverty and inequality. Motivating my research agenda is the question: how do demographic, structural, and institutional factors shape socio-economic conditions and disparities across individuals, time, and place? Accordingly, my current research focuses on three areas: 1) poverty and poverty risks, particularly among mothers and children; 2) the roles of power resources and historical racism in understanding inequalities across place (e.g. high poverty in the South); 3) cumulative (dis)advantage and mobility. While my current work primarily involves the use of quantitative techniques to analyze large scale and often multi-level datasets, I also have training in qualitative methods.

I have published in the Journal of Marriage and Family, American Sociological Review, and American Behavioral Scientist. My research (with Linda Burton) on the socioeconomic mobility aspirations and barriers of low-income mothers of children with disabilities was recently published in Marginalized Mothers: Mothering from the Margins.

Contact Information: 
Office: 218 McNeil Building
Phone:  215.898.7990

Penn Affiliations: 

Population Studies Center
Center of Africana Studies