Kristina Brant is a PhD candidate in Sociology at Harvard University and a Doctoral Fellow in the Multidisciplinary Program in Inequality and Social Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School. She is broadly interested in understanding the causes and consequences of persistent concentrated poverty, particularly in rural communities.
Kristina’s current research focuses on the impacts of the opioid crisis on rural communities in Central Appalachia. Her dissertation is an in-depth qualitative investigation of the impact of the criminalization of addiction on families, through the lens of kinship care. She draws primarily on interviews and fieldwork conducted with relative caregivers and parents whose kids are in the care of relatives. This work has been supported by the National Science Foundation, Harvard's Multidisciplinary Program in Inequality and Social Policy, and Harvard's Center for American Political Studies, and it has been recognized by awards from the American Sociological Association, the Eastern Sociological Society, the Rural Sociological Society, and the Society for the Study of Social Problems.
For the past five years, Kristina has also been a part of the National UnDACAmented Research Project, a multi-site longitudinal study investigating the impact of DACA on undocumented young adults. With co-authors Roberto Gonzales and Ben Roth, she is currently working on a book manuscript under contract with UC Press, exploring how the impact of DACA has been patterned by state and urbanicity.
Since 2016, Kristina has been conducting fieldwork in Appalachian Kentucky. When not researching, she skates with Somer City Roller Derby, acts with Flashback Theater Company, and occasionally moonlights as a beertender at her town's local watering hole, Jarfly Brewing.
Kristina also holds a BA in Sociology and a BA in Economics from the University of Chicago.