Wingfield receives NSF grant to study millennials and corporate employment practices


Adia Harvey Wingfield, the Mary Tileston Hemenway Professor and associate dean for faculty development in Arts & Sciences, has been awarded a two-year, $180,000 grant from the National Science Foundation for the project “Millennials and Corporate Employment Practices.”

Millennials are now the largest generation in the American workforce, and their influence on the economy is growing. This project will investigate whether and how diversity initiatives in the finance and insurance industries shape where millennials want to work. In particular, Wingfield will examine whether corporate efforts to make workplaces more hospitable to a varied workforce lead to greater success in hiring. Students will have the opportunity to assist with all stages of the research process, which will include in-depth, open-ended interviews with 60 workers aged 23–37 in the finance and insurance sectors in New York and North Carolina.

Wingfield’s research examines how and why racial and gender inequality persists in professional occupations. She has written for mainstream outlets including Slate, The Atlantic, Vox, and Harvard Business Review, and is the recipient of the 2018 Public Understanding of Sociology Award from the American Sociological Association. Her most recent book, Flatlining: Race, Work, and Health Care in the New Economy, won the 2019 C. Wright Mills Award.