Justin J.W. Powell is Professor of Sociology of Education in the Institute of Education & Society at the University of Luxembourg. His comparative institutional analyses chart persistence and change in special and inclusive education, in vocational training and higher education, and in science systems and research policy. His research—bridging sociology, political science, and education—has been widely published in English and German and received numerous international awards. His (co-)authored books include Barriers to Inclusion (Routledge, 2011/2016), Comparing Special Education: Origins to Contemporary Paradoxes (Stanford UP, 2011), The Century of Science: The Global Triumph of the Research University (Emerald, 2017), European Educational Research (Re)Constructed: Institutional Change in Germany, the United Kingdom, Norway and the European Union (Oxford: Symposium Books, 2018), and Global Mega-Science (Stanford UP, forthcoming).
After coordinating international dissertation fellowship programs at the Social Science Research Council (SSRC), New York, he was Research Fellow of the Max Planck Institute for for Human Development ( Bildungsforschung ), Berlin; Lecturer at the University of Göttingen; T.H. Marshall Fellow at the LSE; and Project Director at the Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB). In Winter 2011/12, he was Visiting Professor of Sociology at Leibniz University Hannover, Germany. He was Research Fellow of the Institute of Higher Education Research of the Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg, Germany (2012–16) and Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Oxford, UK (MT 2020).
A graduate of Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania (BA, 1992, with distinction in sociology and anthropology), he studied political science and sociology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the Humboldt University of Berlin (MA, 1999, with distinction), and received his doctorate in sociology from the Free University Berlin (Dr. phil., 2004, summa cum laude ).