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Sociology: People


Alexander Janus

Alexander Janus
Dr Alexander Janus
Lecturer in Quantitative Sociology
6.20 Chrystal Macmillan Building 15a George Square Edinburgh UK EH8 9LD
+44 (0)131 651 3965
Research Interests
Inequality, Family Demography, Long-Term Care Policy, Family Policy, Longitudinal Data Analysis, Multilevel Analysis


I grew up outside of Chicago, IL. I earned a BA from Carleton College in Northfield, MN, an MS in sociology from the University of Wisconsin—Madison, and a PhD in sociology from the University of California, Berkeley. I also worked as a statistician at the US Census Bureau in Washington, DC for a couple of years. Before I came to the University of Edinburgh, I was a postdoctoral research fellow in the sociology department and at Nuffield College at the University of Oxford.

In addition to my role as a lecturer in sociology, I am an affiliate of the University of Edinburgh’s Q-Step Centre and Centre for Research on Families and Relationships.

Guidance & Feedback Hours

4:30-5:30pm, Tuesdays

2:00-3:00pm, Fridays

Research Interests

My current research focuses on elder care, especially family caregiving, and long-term care policy.


Janus, Alexander L. and Alison Koslowsi. 2019. "Whose Responsibility? Elder Support Norms Regarding the Provision and Financing of Assistance with Daily Activities across Economically Developed Countries.European Journal of Ageing Forthcoming.

Janus, Alexander L. and Pamela Doty. 2018. "Trends in Informal Care for Disabled Older Americans, 1982-2012." The Gerontologist 58(5):863-871.

Janus, Alexander L. and John Ermisch. 2015. "Who Pays for Home Care? A Study of Nationally Representative Data on Disabled Older Americans." BMC: Health Services Research 15:1-14.

Janus, Alexander L. 2013. “The Implications of Family Policy Regimes for Mothers’ Autonomy.” Research in Social Stratification and Mobility 34:96-110.

Janus, Alexander L. 2013. “The Gap Between Mothers’ Work -Family Orientations and Employment Trajectories in 18 OECD Countries.” European Sociological Review 29(4):752-766.

Hout, Michael and Alexander L. Janus. 2011. "Educational Mobility in the United States Since the 1930s." In Whither Opportunity? Rising Inequality and the Uncertain Life Chances of Low-Income Children, edited by G. Duncan and R. Murnane. New York: Russell Sage Foundation.

Janus, Alexander L. 2010. "The Influence of Social Desirability Pressures on Expressed Immigration Attitudes." Social Science Quarterly 91(4):928-46.

Janus, Alexander L. 2009. “Disability and the Transition to Adulthood.” Social Forces 88(1):99-120.

Day, Jennifer Cheeseman, Alexander L. Janus, and Jessica Davis. 2005. Computer and Internet Use in the United States. Washington, DC: US Department of Commerce.

Mentorship of Postgraduate Students

Areas of Supervision

I could be of most help to those with interests in one or more of the following areas: the family, the life course, inequality, and social policy. I am most interested in working with postgraduate students who want to use quantitative methods in their research. The School of Social and Political Science has internationally renowned scholars in all of the aforementioned areas who would be more appropriate supervisors for students interested in other methodological approaches.  

Mentorship Style

There is wide variation in mentorship styles in the social sciences, even within departments. It is important that new or prospective postgraduate students seek out potential mentors whose mentorship style is compatible with the student’s approach to learning and doing research. I encourage my students to gain as much hands-on experience as possible in doing research and communicating the results of their research early in their postgraduate career. Examples of such activities could include presenting a paper at an academic conference or submitting a paper to a journal. While I strongly encourage my students to develop an independent and innovative research agenda, I am also open to co-authoring papers with students.

Note for Prospective Students

If you are applying to one of the postgraduate programs in the School of Social and Political Science and interested in having me as a supervisor, you are welcome to e-mail me a brief note of introduction.

If you are interested in being supervised by Alexander Janus, please see the links below for more information:

PhD in Social Policy; PhD in Sociology; MSc (R) Social Policy; MSc (R) Sociology