Simone Ispa-Landa

Simone Ispa-Landa

Associate Professor, Human Development and Social Policy


Simone Ispa-Landa is associate professor of human development and social policy in the School of Education and Social Policy and (by courtesy) associate professor of sociology at Northwestern University. She is a Fellow at Northwestern’s Institute for Policy Research (IPR).

She is currently a William T. Grant Scholar (2018-2023) and was a Spencer Dissertation Fellow (2009-2010). Ispa-Landa’s scholarship concerns the sociology of education, race and gender, and punishment and stigma. Her work advances theoretical models about how race, gender, and inequality are linked within schooling and criminal justice contexts.

She is currently leading two large, data-intensive projects. One project examines how school stakeholders in a racially and socioeconomically diverse suburban school district make sense of and respond to racial differences in school discipline data.

The second project analyzes selection into sororities and fraternities within the context of a highly selective private university. Ispa-Landa’s research has been published in Sociology of Education, Journal of Marriage and Family, Criminology, Gender & Society, and Educational Researcher. She has served on the editorial boards of Sociology of Education and Gender & Society.

Ispa-Landa’s efforts and commitment to gender equity and improving the lives of women were recognized by a Northwestern Women’s Center 30th Anniversary “Gender Equity in Action” Faculty Award. At Northwestern, her teaching has focused on techniques for qualitative research design and data collection and school discipline. Ispa-Landa received her PhD in sociology from Harvard University in 2011.

Curriculum Vitae

Adobe Acrobat PDF View Simone Ispa-Landa's CV.


  • 2018 - Northwestern University Women's Center 30th Anniversary Gender Equity in Action Faculty Award
  • 2018 - William T. Grant Scholar
  • 2009 - Spencer Foundation Dissertation Fellowship
  • 2008 - National Science Foundation Dissertation Improvement Grant


Selected Publications

Ispa-Landa, Simone and Sara Thomas (June, 2019). Race, Gender, and Emotion Work among School Principals. Gender & Society.
( Adobe Acrobat PDF Logo Download )

Ispa-Landa, Simone (2019). Believing in a Positive Future as a Form of Stigma Resistance: Narratives of Denied Expungement-Seekers. Deviant Behavior: 1-17.
( Adobe Acrobat PDF Logo Download )

Ispa-Landa, Simone (June, 2018). Persistently Harsh Punishments Amid Efforts to Reform: Using Tools From Social Psychology to Counteract Racial Bias in School Disciplinary Decisions. Educational Researcher: 1-7.
( Adobe Acrobat PDF Logo Download )

Ispa-Landa, Simone (April, 2017). Racial and Gender Inequality and School Discipline: Towards a More Comprehensive View of School Policy. Social Currents: 1-7.
( Adobe Acrobat PDF Logo Download )

Ispa-Landa, Simone (January, 2016). Legitimizing Family Management: The Role of Adolescents' Understandings of Risk. Journal of Marriage and Family.
( Adobe Acrobat PDF Logo Download )

Ispa-Landa, Simone and Charles Loeffler (2016). Indefinite Punishment and the Criminal-Record: Stigma Reports among Expungement-seekers in Illinois. Criminology.
( Adobe Acrobat PDF Logo Download )

Ispa-Landa, Simone and Jordan Conwell (January, 2015). Once You Go to a White School, You Kind of Adapt: Black Adolescents and the Racial Classification of Schools. Sociology of Education: 1-19.
( Adobe Acrobat PDF Logo Download )

Ispa-Landa, Simone. (2015). Review of Inequality in the Promised Land: Race, Resources, And Suburban Schooling . American Journal of Sociology: 121(1): 292-294.

Ispa-Landa, Simone (2015). Effects of Affluent Suburban Schooling: Learning Skilled Ways of Interacting with Educational Gatekeepers in Orlando Patterson and Ethan Fosse, The Cultural Matrix: Understanding Black Youth (pp. 393-414). Harvard University Press.

Ispa-Landa, Simone (2013). Gender, Race, and Justifications for Group Exclusion: Urban Black Students Bussed to Affluent Suburban Schools. Sociology of Education: 218-233.
( Adobe Acrobat PDF Logo Download )

Research Interests

Race and ethnicity, gender, sociology of education, criminal records, sociology of youth and childhood, stigma, qualitative research methods.


Editorial Boards

Year Journal Name Position
2017 - 2023 Gender & Society Editorial Board Member
2016 - 2018 Sociology of Education Editorial Board Member

Last Updated: 2020-04-15 16:01:17