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Youngmin Yi

Ph.D. Candidate

Youngmin Yi

Educational Background

M.A. Sociology, Cornell University

B.A. Economics and French, Wellesley College



My research examines the intersection of family life with the criminal justice, child welfare, and immigration systems in the United States. My current work draws upon quantitative methods and sociological and demographic perspectives to investigate racial/ethnic and socioeconomic inequality in health and living arrangement instability in childhood and the transition to adulthood as consequences of system involvement.


Family, criminal justice, child welfare, race/ethnicity, demography


Daniel Lichter (co-chair), Christopher Wildeman (co-chair), Erin York Cornwell, Matthew Hall


Institutions and Inequality in Childhood and the Transition to Adulthood: The Consequences of Criminal Justice and Child Welfare System Contact

My dissertation explores the consequences of criminal justice and child welfare system involvement for family life and inequality in early life. In the first chapter, I analyze the National Survey of Child and Adolescent Wellbeing to determine whether foster care placement affects children’s likelihood of experiencing instability in their care and living arrangements, using inverse propensity weighting to account for children’s differential risk of foster care placement. Next, I use life table analysis of the 1997 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth to illustrate how the inclusion of institutions (i.e. incarceration, military, higher education) as home-leaving contexts impacts estimates of the timing and cumulative risk of first home-leaving in the transition to adulthood, and differentially so across social groups. In the third chapter, I use linked New York City administrative records and several research designs to investigate the possibly causal relationship between paternal incarceration and infant health.


  • Sociology