Shauna M. Cooper
Shauna M. Cooper
Nonresident Fellow
Office of Race and Equity Research

Shauna M. Cooper is a nonresident fellow in the Office of Race and Equity Research and a former equity scholar at the Urban Institute. She researches child and family policy, as well as strategies for leveraging community partnerships to promote well-being and advance racial equity.

Cooper brings more than 15 years of expertise examining the racial, cultural, and community contexts of development, health, and well-being. Her work includes contributions to the literature on parenting and well-being, father involvement, community involvement, and youth development. She also brings significant experience in family-centered research design and community-based methodological approaches. Cooper’s work has been funded by several federal agencies, and she has been an expert panelist or consultant for several agencies and foundations, including the Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation; the National Science Foundation; and the Spencer Foundation.

She is an associate editor for Child Development and is on editorial boards for several other peer-reviewed journals, including the Journal of Family Psychology, Psychology of Men and Masculinities, and Child Clinical and Family Psychology Review. She cochairs the Society for Research in Adolescence’s Consensus Committee and is a member of the Society for Research in Adolescence’s Social Policy Engagement Working Group. From 2013 to 2017, she was chair of the Society for Research in Child Development’s Black Caucus.

Cooper is a board member for the Council on Contemporary Families and the AAKOMA Project.

Cooper received her PhD in developmental psychology from the University of Michigan.

She is also an associate professor in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience and director of the Strengths, Assets, and Resilience Lab at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Research Areas
Children and youth
Neighborhoods, cities, and metros
Race and equity
Wealth and financial well-being
Children's health and development
Community engagement
Black/African American communities
Father involvement
Health equity
Racial and ethnic disparities
Structural racism
Youth development