Sonya Porter

Bureau of the Census
4600 Silver Hill Rd.
Washington, DC 20233

E-Mail: EmailAddress: hidden: you can email any NBER-related person as first underscore last at nber dot org
Institutional Affiliation: U.S. Census Bureau

NBER Working Papers and Publications

October 2018The Opportunity Atlas: Mapping the Childhood Roots of Social Mobility
with Raj Chetty, John N. Friedman, Nathaniel Hendren, Maggie R. Jones: w25147
We construct a public atlas of children's outcomes in adulthood by the Census tract in which they grew up using anonymized longitudinal data covering nearly the entire U.S. population. For each tract, we estimate children's earnings distributions, incarceration rates, and other out-comes in adulthood by parental income, race, and gender. Children's outcomes vary sharply across nearby areas: for children with parents at the 25th percentile of the national income distribution, the standard deviation of mean household income at age 35 is $5,000 across tracts within counties. We illustrate how the tract-level data provide insight into how neighborhoods shape the development of human capital and support local economic policy using two applications. First, we show how these data can be used to b...
March 2018Race and Economic Opportunity in the United States: An Intergenerational Perspective
with Raj Chetty, Nathaniel Hendren, Maggie R. Jones: w24441
We study the sources of racial disparities in income using anonymized longitudinal data covering nearly the entire U.S. population from 1989-2015. We document three results. First, black Americans and American Indians have much lower rates of upward mobility and higher rates of downward mobility than whites, leading to persistent disparities across generations. Conditional on parent income, the black-white income gap is driven by differences in wages and employment rates between black and white men; there are no such differences between black and white women. Hispanic Americans have rates of intergenerational mobility more similar to whites than blacks, leading the Hispanic-white income gap to shrink across generations. Second, differences in parental marital status, education, and wealth ...

Published: Raj Chetty & Nathaniel Hendren & Maggie R Jones & Sonya R Porter, 2020. "Race and Economic Opportunity in the United States: an Intergenerational Perspective*," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, vol 135(2), pages 711-783.

August 2017Race Matters: Income Shares, Income Inequality, and Income Mobility for All U.S. Races
with Randall Akee, Maggie R. Jones: w23733
This paper presents income shares, income inequality, and income immobility measures for all race and ethnic groups in the United States using the universe of U.S. tax returns matched at the individual level to U.S. Census race data for 2000–2014. Whites and Asians have a disproportionately large share of income in top quantiles. Income for most race groups ranges between 50–80 percent of the corresponding White income level consistently across various percentiles in the overall income distribution—suggesting that class alone cannot explain away overall income differences. The rate of income growth at the 90th percentile exceeds that of the 50th and 10th percentiles for all race and ethnic groups; divergence is largest for Whites, however, in the post-Great Recession era. Income immobility...

Published: Randall Akee & Maggie R. Jones & Sonya R. Porter, 2019. "Race Matters: Income Shares, Income Inequality, and Income Mobility for All U.S. Races," Demography, vol 56(3), pages 999-1021. citation courtesy of

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