Center for Studies in Demography and Ecology

Michael Esposito

Funded Fellow 2015/2016


Michael is a PhD student in the University of Washington’s Department of Sociology. He is generally interested in the ways in which individuals leverage social and economic resources to protect their health. His primary research agenda focuses on elucidating racial variation in the mechanisms that link educational attainment to better health. He has recently found himself becoming more involved in projects on the adverse health effects of contact with the criminal justice system as well. In addressing these topics, he often relies on machine/statistical learning methodologies–on which he has received extensive instruction–and causal inference techniques. Utilizing these tools–separately, and sometimes in conjunction–usually allows for him to effectively leverage observational data to speak towards the research questions he is interested in addressing.

Michael’s dissertation examines racial and ethnic heterogeneity in the causal process linking educational attainment to health. More generally, his research efforts focus on identifying the ways in which social conditions (e.g., education; incarceration; marital status) operate as health inputs are contingent upon one’s social location (e.g., race, gender, age, and their intersections).