Position title: Assistant Professor of Sociology
8111 Sewell Social Sciences
Research Interest Statement:
My work, which lies at the intersection of cultural sociology, economic sociology, and stratification research, explores the formation of status hierarchies and how they fuel inequality in society. Empirically, I focus on unsettled fields, uncertain markets, and organizations, which I use to study how we come to view different people as unequally valuable and how this affects their outcomes. I have written on the construction of value beliefs in the art world, the emergence of cultural hierarchy as a dimension of social class in Gilded Age America, and processes of consecration that entrench faith in hierarchies of worthiness. My latest project uses experimental designs to show how, in a variety of social settings, the quantification of merit through ratings and scores fuels inequality in the rewards received by the winners and losers of meritocratic contests. Prior to joining UW-Madison I taught at the London School of Economics, where I remain a faculty affiliate at the International Inequalities Institute.
Ph.D., Columbia University, 2016
Culture, Social Stratification, Economic Sociology, Methods and Statistics, Comparative-Historical Sociology, Class Analysis and Historical Change, General Social Theory, Social Psychology and Microsociology
Other Campus Affiliations:
Accominotti, Fabien. 2021. “The Aesthetics of Hierarchy: How Algorithmic Classifications Legitimize Inequality.” British Journal of Sociology 72:196-202.
Accominotti, Fabien, and Daniel Tadmon. 2020. “How the Reification of Merit Breeds Inequality: Theory and Experimental Evidence.” LSE International Inequalities Institute Working Paper Series 42: 1-37.
Accominotti, Fabien. 2019. “Consecration as a Population-Level Phenomenon.” American Behavioral Scientist 65: 9-24.
Accominotti, Fabien, Shamus Khan, and Adam Storer. 2018. “How Cultural Capital Emerged in Gilded Age America: Musical Purification and Cross-Class Inclusion at the New York Philharmonic.” American Journal of Sociology 123: 1743-1783.
• Charles Tilly Best Article Award, ASA Comparative-Historical Sociology Section, 2020.
• Honorable Mention, Distinguished Scholarly Publication Award, ASA Consumers and Consumption Section, 2019.
Public Lectures and Podcasts:
University of Wisconsin-Madison, Institute for Research on Poverty Seminar: “Meritocracy at Work: How the Architecture of Evaluation Shapes Inequality” (March 2022)
Down the Research Rabbit Hole Podcast: “The Architecture of Status Hierarchies and Why It Matters for Inequality” (January 2022)
Collège de France, Public Lecture: “A Theory of Consecration: Revolution, Hierarchy, and Inequality in the Market for Modern Art” (May 2021, in French)
Especially Big Data Podcast, Episode 5: “The Statistical Symphony” (December 2017)