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Benjamin Bradlow

Princeton University

Based in

United States
North America

Benjamin Bradlow is an Assistant Professor of Sociology and International Affairs at Princeton University. His work connects urban inequality, climate change, industrial change, and the political challenges for democracy that confront societies across the globe. Bradlow’s first book, Urban Power (forthcoming in 2024 with Princeton University Press), compares the divergent politics of distributing urban public goods — housing, sanitation, and transportation — in two mega-cities after transitions to democracy: São Paulo, Brazil and Johannesburg, South Africa. A new project investigates how countries in the global south navigate industrial transitions from carbon, with a focus on auto manufacturing and mobility in Brazil and South Africa.

Country(ies) of Specialty

Brazil South Africa

Focus areas of expertise

Climate policy and politics Net Zero Climate Justice Renewable energy

How to Connect



Benjamin H. Bradlow. 2024. “Urban social movements and local state capacity.” World Development. 173: 106415.

Benjamin H. Bradlow, Stefano Polloni and William Violette. 2023. “Public Housing Spillovers: Evidence from South Africa.” Journal of Urban Economics. 134: 103527.

Benjamin H. Bradlow. 2022. “Embeddedness and cohesion: regimes of urban public goods distribution.” Theory and Society. 51:1, 117-144.

Benjamin H. Bradlow. 2021. “Weapons Of The Strong: Elite Resistance and the Neo-Apartheid City.” City & Community. 20:3, 191-211.

Benjamin H. Bradlow. 2021. “Why funding America’s local governments could have a global impact.” 26 January. Atlantic Council.

Mohammad Ali Kadivar, Adaner Usmani, and Benjamin H. Bradlow. 2020. “The Long March: Deep Democracy in Cross-National Perspective.” Social Forces. 98:3, 1311-1338.

Benjamin H. Bradlow. 2020. “Responding to global crises with low-carbon social housing.” Focal Points series on “Room Temperature: Housing in Crisis.” Eurozine.

Benjamin H. Bradlow. 2020. “Why operational subsidies are key to reforming South Africa’s minibus taxi sector.” 11 October. The Conversation.

Benjamin H. Bradlow. 2019. “One Way to Make the Green New Deal Actually Happen: a Super-Ministry.” 26 June. CityLab (Bloomberg).

Benjamin H. Bradlow. 2019. “Brazil’s Political Peripheries and the Authoritarian Style.” Spotlight On “Political Geographies of Right-Wing Populism.” International Journal of Urban & Regional Research. September.

Benjamin H. Bradlow. 2018. “Trickle-Down Authoritarianism.” 5 November. Boston Review.

Benjamin H. Bradlow. 2015. “City learning from below: urban poor federations and knowledge generation through transnational, horizontal exchange.” International Development Planning Review. 37:2, 129-142.

Benjamin H. Bradlow. 2015. “Quiet Conflict: Institutional Change, Informal Settlement Upgrading, and Formalized Partnerships Between Local Authorities and Urban Social Movements in South Africa.” In Peter Herrle, Astrid Ley, and Josefine Fokdal, eds. From Local Action to Global Networks: Housing the Urban Poor. New York, NY: Routledge. Series on Global Urban Studies. 87-105.

Benjamin H. Bradlow. 2015. “A Democratic Infrastructure for Johannesburg”. In Toni L. Griffin, Ariella Cohen, and David Maddox, eds. The Just City Essays: 26 Visions for Urban Equity, Inclusion and Opportunity. New York, NY: The J. Max Bond Center on Design for the Just City at the Spitzer School of Architecture, City College of New York, Next City and The Nature of Cities. 63-66.

Benjamin H. Bradlow, Joel Bolnick, and Clifford Shearing. 2011. “Housing, Institutions, Money: The failure and promise of human settlements policy and practice in South Africa.” Environment & Urbanization, 23:1, 267-76.