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Margaret Simms
Nonresident Fellow
Center on Labor, Human Services, and Population
I became an economist because I wanted to examine the factors that contribute to inequality and help identify ways to increase opportunity. Urban is a place where I can do that kind of work and know that important findings will be given visibility in places that matter.

Margaret C. Simms is a nonresident fellow at the Urban Institute. Until April 2018, she was an Institute fellow and director of the Low-Income Working Families project. Before joining Urban, Simms was vice president for governance and economic analysis at the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies. She began working at the Joint Center as deputy director of research and held positions of increasing responsibility during her 20-year tenure. In 2006, she was the center’s interim president. Before joining the Joint Center, Simms was a program director at the Urban Institute. A nationally recognized expert on the economic well-being of African Americans, her current work focuses on low-income families, with an emphasis on employment and asset building.

In 2005, Simms was elected to membership in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and in 2008, the National Economic Association presented her the Samuel Z. Westerfield Award. Carleton College awarded her an honorary doctor of laws degree in 2010.

Simms holds a BA in economics from Carleton College and a PhD in economics from Stanford University.

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