Michael Franklin Thompson is an assistant professor of sociology and joined the Grinnell faculty in fall 2011. He is broadly interested in political and economic sociology with a focus on stratification and socioeconomic mobility. His current research focuses on how political institutions influence the enactment of state minimum wage legislation across the U.S. and the impact of these laws on income inequality and employment. Before coming to Grinnell, Michael served as a research analyst for the Indiana Business Research Center, collaborating on grant-funded projects for the Indiana Department of Workforce Development, the Economic Development Administration and the Lumina Foundation.
At Grinnell, Michael enjoys teaching introductory and political sociology courses, as well as research methods and introductory statistics. He has previously taught undergraduate courses and graduate-level applied statistics at Indiana University Bloomington, Indiana University-Purdue University Columbus (IUPUC) and the Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) at the University of Michigan.
Though born in New York, Michael grew up in the Caribbean nation of Trinidad & Tobago. He returned to the US for college at Yale and spent a few years doing social work in New York City and business research in Trinidad before pursuing his doctoral studies in the sociology department at Indiana University Bloomington. In his spare time, Michael enjoys swimming, listening to music and exploring Iowa.