My research explores how policy institutions both create and reinforce social inequality. Rather than treating a state action as a direct and mechanical response to an underlying pathology among a target population, my research shows that policy institutions structure which people experience coercive social control, and which people recieve access to critical services and benefits. My work shows that welfare states interact with systems of social control to create complex and racialized systems of social exclusion and social support. I pursue questions about the consequences and causes of social policy by building on insights from core theoretical traditions — stratification, social control, the sociology of race, and institutional sociology — to motivate statistical analyses of large-scale administrative data.

Peer Reviewed Publications

“Family surveillance: Police and the reporting of child abuse and neglect”. The Russell Sage Foundation Journal of The Social Sciences. Frank Edwards. Forthcoming.

 “Monetary Sanctions in Criminal Justice”. Annual Review of Criminology. Karin Martin, Sarah Shannon, Bryan Sykes, Frank Edwards, and Alexes Harris. Forthcoming

“Fines and Monetary Sanctions”. Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Criminology and Criminal Justice. Alexes Harris and Frank Edwards. Forthcoming.  Forthcoming

“Saving Children, Controlling Families: Punishment, Redistribution and Child Protection”. American Sociological Review 81(3): 575-595. 2016.  Frank Edwards. 2016. (pdf)

“Framing Punishment: Expert Selection and Punitive Ideology in the News”. McGill Sociological Review 4:93-112. 2014. Frank Edwards. 2014.  (html)