Barbara Kiviat is Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology. She is an economic sociologist who studies how moral beliefs and other cultural understandings shape markets and justify the inequalities they produce. She is particularly interested in how normative ideas influence the pricing and allocation of socially important resources, such as insurance, credit, and jobs. Her current project considers how these dynamics play out when corporations use massive amounts of personal data to decide what to offer to individual consumers. She mostly uses qualitative data and methods, including in-depth interviews, archives, and ethnographic observation. She also at times works with survey data and vignette experiments.
Kiviat’s research has received awards or funding from the American Sociological Association, the National Science Foundation, the Society for the Advancement of Socio-Economics, the Washington Center for Equitable Growth, the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics, and other groups. Her work has been published in American Sociological Review, Socio-Economic Review, Sociological Science, Socius, and other journals.
Kiviat holds a Ph.D. in Sociology and Social Policy from Harvard University. She holds an M.P.A. from New York University, an M.A. in Journalism from Columbia University, and a B.A. in the Writing Seminars from Johns Hopkins University. Previously, she was a staff writer at Time magazine. Her website provides more information.