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The seemingly intractable problem of racial inequality in the United States—despite periods of tremendous progress—is evident in numerous measures of disparity (poverty rates, educational achievement, household net worth, homicide and imprisonment rates, and much more). The question is why racial inequality persists.

On October 14, 2020, Alondra Nelson, president of the Social Science Research Council; Joshua Cohen, academic faculty, Apple University; Francis Fukuyama, Olivier Nomellini Senior Fellow, Freeman Spogli Institute, Stanford University; and Glenn C. Loury, Merton P. Stoltz Professor of the Social Sciences, Brown University, considered this question and discussed social policy remedies to promote racial equality and the flourishing of Black Americans, in a conversation moderated by Margaret Levi, director of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS).

This event was hosted by CASBS in partnership with the Social Science Research Council’s Inequality Initiative and the Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law at Stanford University, as part of CASBS’s Social Science for a World in Crisis series.