Allison Daminger is a PhD candidate in sociology & social policy at Harvard University. She uses qualitative research methods to study the relationship between gender inequality and family life.
At Radcliffe, Daminger is completing her dissertation. This research focuses on “cognitive labor”: the work of anticipating household needs, identifying options for meeting those needs, deciding among the options, and monitoring the outcomes. While decades of sociological research show a persistent gender gap in men’s and women’s household labor contributions, common definitions of household labor encompass only the physical elements of such work. Via in-depth interviews of couples with children, Daminger shows that cognitive labor is in fact a ubiquitous component of household life—one that is unequally distributed on the basis of gender.
Daminger’s research has been published in the American Sociological Review and recognized by three sections of the American Sociological Association (Sex and Gender; Family; and Inequality, Poverty, and Mobility). At Harvard, she has received funding support from the Center for American Political Studies, the James M. and Cathleen D. Stone Ph.D. Scholars in Inequality and Wealth Concentration fellowship, and the Weatherhead Initiative on Gender Inequality. Daminger received an AB in anthropology from Princeton University in 2012.