Socio-economic disparities in the nature and context of pre-school childcare in the State of New York

Friday, 16th January, 2015
Lecture Room B, Boyd Orr Building, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, United Kingdom

In this joint event with the Urban Studies Seminar Series Professor Brandon will discuss findings in relation to the quality of childcare provision in deprived neighbourhoods in New York State and outline a comparative research agenda for Glasgow.


Little research has been conducted in the United States on the types and locations of public and private child care establishments.  A reason for this gap in the child care research was that data on child care facilities were unavailable.  But, the big data and information revolutions and governments’ efforts to share digitized administrative data have ameliorated this data scarcity problem.  Now investigating the ecology of child care facilities is possible.  Prof Brandon capitalizes on the innovations in computational social science and easier access to electronic administrative data to present preliminary findings on the nature and context of child care establishments in the State of New York.  The findings raise questions about the disparities in the provision of child care services in a populous and diverse American state that aims to guarantee accessible, affordable, and quality childcare to all preschool-aged children, especially the poor and disadvantaged.


Peter Brandon is Professor of Sociology in the Department of Sociology at the University at Albany, the State University of New York.  Brandon has held previous academic and research positions at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, Brown University, Carleton College, and the Australian National University.  Over the past two decades, funding from government agencies and private foundations has permitted him to pursue research on the dynamics of welfare, poverty, and income inequality, family change and variation, child and family well-being, and the economic and social organization of households.  Brandon has used the Survey of Income and Program Participation, (SIPP), to conduct research on immigrant children and families, welfare reform, child care, and family diversity and change.  Presently, he is evaluating the long-term effects of the mid-1990s welfare reforms; studying childcare provisions for children with disabilities; examining allocations of time within and across households; and, exploring the spatial distribution of social and child and family services in New York State.