Luca Maria Pesando

Associate Professor

Department of Sociology
McGill University
Stephen Leacock Building, room 821
855 Sherbrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, H3A 0B9

Tel.: 514-398-4400 ext.094273
E-mail: lucamaria.pesando [at] mcgill.ca
Office: Stephen Leacock Building, room 821

Departmental Website


Dr. Pesando received his Ph.D. in Demography and Sociology from the University of Pennsylvania in 2018 and completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Penn Population Studies Center in 2018-2019. His research lies in the areas of social and economic demography, and he is interested in issues of family poverty, inequality, stratification, intra- and inter-generational processes, and interactions between life-cycle events and human capital accumulation. His overarching research aim is to produce better knowledge on the link between family change and different facets of inequality – educational opportunity, gender, health, income, wealth, etc. – in areas where these dynamics are changing rapidly and scant research is available. His work takes an international comparative perspective and focuses on low- and middle-income contexts (mostly sub-Saharan Africa) undergoing social, demographic, and economic transformations.

Theoretically and methodologically, Pesando’s work follows two research streams. First, a more macro-level approach, focusing on countries as units of analysis, grounded in macro-level sociological theories of demographic transition and family change, and aimed at providing population-level explanations of global social phenomena. Second, a more micro-level approach, focusing on individuals and the household circumstances that surround them, and more closely tied to the implementation of public policies and their impact thereof. In light of his prior work experience in the policy world, he has developed an interest and gained expertise in implementing and evaluating randomized and quasi-randomized study designs across low- and middle-income countries such as Ghana, Zambia, and Morocco.

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