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The Malcolm Wiener Center for Social Policy developed a Data Visualization Lab in 2021 to assist policymakers, politicians, academics, and journalists as they seek to improve outcomes for families most at risk of getting left behind. The three primary areas of focus are on mass incarceration, disparities in higher education, and US regional divides. The Social Policy Lab covers a range of topics that touch on these areas to shed light on America's greatest challenges through data, storytelling, and solutions. 


headshot of David Deming

David Deming



David Deming is a Professor of Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, and the Faculty Director of the Malcolm Wiener Center for Social Policy. His research focuses broadly on the economics of skill development, education and labor markets. 

headshot of Tom Shirley

Tom Shirley

headshot of Gordon Hanson

Gordon Hanson



Gordon Hanson is the Peter Wertheim Professor in Urban Policy at Harvard Kennedy School. He is also a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations and co-editor of the Journal of Economic Perspectives. 

Headshot of Damarcus Bell

Damarcus Bell

headshot of Sandra Susan Smith

Sandra Smith



Sandra Susan Smith is the Daniel and Florence Guggenheim Professor of Criminal Justice and Faculty Director of the Program in Criminal Justice Policy and Management. Her areas of interest include urban poverty and joblessness, social capital and social networks, and, more recently, the front end of criminal case processing

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Lucciana Alvarez


Technical & Design


Tom is studying for a MPP at the Kennedy School. His background is in data visualization for public sector professionals in the UK - within education, housing and welfare services. He is currently researching mass incarceration and criminalization in the US.

Managing Editor

Acquisitions & Content

Damarcus Bell is a Master in Public Policy candidate at the Harvard Kennedy School. He has led a career as an education leader and entertainment producer, always centering the brilliance and thriving of the Black experience. His current research focuses on limiting the scope and scale of the criminal punishment system, and global practices of racial justice and institutional transformation.


Lucciana is pursuing a Master’s in Public Administration and International Development at the Kennedy School. Her research focuses on gender disparities in Latin America. She previously worked at the Inter-American Development Bank and different research centers.

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Jeremy Ney

Founding Editor

Jeremy Ney was a dual-degree graduate student at MIT Sloan and the Harvard Kennedy School (MBA/MPA). His research focuses on US regional divides and income inequality. He previously worked at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and IDEO.

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