261 Humphrey School
CV/Resume (62.94 KB)

Joe Soss

Cowles Chair for the Study of Public Service
civic engagement and public participation; democracy; gender; income inequality and poverty; race and ethnicity; social welfare policy

Joe Soss is the inaugural Cowles Chair for the Study of Public Service at the University of Minnesota, where he holds faculty positions in the Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs, the Department of Political Science, and the Department of Sociology. His research and teaching explore the interplay of democratic politics, socioeconomic inequalities, and public policy. He is particularly interested in the political sources and consequences of policies that govern social marginality and shape life conditions for socially marginal groups. Joe Soss is the author of Unwanted Claims: The Politics of Participation in the U.S. Welfare System (2000), co-editor of Race and the Politics of Welfare Reform (2003), co-editor of Remaking America: Democracy and Public Policy in an Age of Inequality (2007), and author or co-author of numerous scholarly articles. His most recent book is Disciplining the Poor: Neoliberal Paternalism and the Persistent Power of Race (University of Chicago Press, 2011), co-authored with Richard C. Fording and Sanford F. Schram. In 2010, he received the campus-wide Outstanding Faculty Award from the University of Minnesota's Council of Graduate Students (COGS). Professor Soss also holds faculty positions in the Department of Sociology and the Department of Political Science.

In The Media

Contrary to a recent New York Times story, there isn’t any evidence that SNAP users buy more soft drinks than anyone else. Humphrey School political scientist Joe Soss is quoted. 

Huffington Post
January 18, 2017

In this commentary, Humphrey School professor Joe Soss describes a recent article in the New York Times—which asserts recipients of food stamps spend a disproportionate amount of their allotment on sugary drinks and other unhealthful foods—a “political hack job.”


Jacobin Magazine
January 16, 2017