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Benjamin H. Bradlow

Postdoctoral Fellow, Weatherhead Center For International Affairs, Harvard University

Benjamin H. Bradlow is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Weatherhead Scholars Program at Harvard University’s Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, where he is an affiliate of the Research Cluster on Comparative Inequality and Inclusion. In 2019-20, he was a Visiting Democracy Fellow at the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. He holds a PhD in Sociology from Brown University, a Masters in City Planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a BA in history from Swarthmore College.

In academic and public-facing writing, he makes connections between urban inequalities and the political challenges for democracy that confront societies across the globe. His research asks: Why are some cities more unequal than others? Why do government institutions reproduce or reduce urban inequalities? When and how does democracy transform the organizational resources available to racialized and economic groups who aim to exploit or overcome urban inequalities? His current book project compares the divergent politics of urban public goods distribution — housing, sanitation, and transportation — in two mega-cities after transitions to democracy: Johannesburg, South Africa, and São Paulo, Brazil.

Academic writing has been published or is forthcoming in Social Forces, City & Community, International Journal of Urban & Regional Research, International Development Planning Review, and Environment & Urbanization.


  • 2020–present
    Postdoctoral Fellow, Harvard University
  • 2019–2020
    Visiting Democracy Fellow, Harvard Kennedy School of Government


  • 2020 
    Brown University, PhD, Sociology
  • 2013 
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Masters in City Planning
  • 2008 
    Swarthmore College, BA, History