Postdoctoral Research Associate
Harnessing qualitative and quantitative methods, Jordan Brensinger’s research primarily explores how organizations uniquely identify people and the social, economic, and policy implications of those processes.
In his dissertation, Brensinger investigated consumer identification through a multi-site, multi-method study of financial identity theft—including interviews with victims and professionals; observations at industry events, a nonprofit call center, and the fraud department of a large credit union; and analysis of organizational and policy documents. By juxtaposing organizational expertise and techniques with consumer accounts of data disputes, his dissertation documented the sociotechnical work that goes into constructing “accurate” personal data and consumer identities while revealing how personal data generates new forms of labor and insecurity for the public as they go about their everyday lives. Insights from this project have been presented at conferences like the Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association (ASA), the Privacy Law Scholars Conference (PLSC), and the Society for the Advancement of Socio Economics (SASE), as well as published in Sociological Theory.
Brensinger’s work leverages partnerships with public, private, and non-profit organizations—including federal agencies, financial institutions, and legal aid offices—to generate compelling questions, amplify on-the-ground expertise, and produce actionable insights. These partnerships have so far produced internal reports, presentations to practitioner groups, and a coauthored thought leadership piece on data justice.
Brensinger completed his Ph.D. in sociology from Columbia University, where he also earned Master’s degrees in sociology and urban and social policy. His intellectual outlook and commitment to seeking a more just and equitable world also derive from extensive experience living, working, and learning on five continents.