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Derek Neal received his PhD in economics from the University of Virginia. He began his academic career as an Assistant Professor at the University of Chicago in 1991. From 1998-2001, he served on the faculty of the University of Wisconsin before returning to Chicago. His current research focuses on measuring labor market inequality among black and white women in the United States. In related work, he is trying to understand the determinants of family structure and the forces driving black-white differences in family structure. In other work, he examines the performance of private versus public schools while paying particular attention to the performance of Catholic schools in large cities. He also studies the specificity of worker skills and the extent to which career specific skills and information (as opposed to firm-specific knowledge) drive the wage and mobility patterns observed among young workers.
Professor Neal has served as an Advisory Editor for Economics Letters and as a co-editor for the Journal of Human Resources. He now serves as the Editor-in-Chief for the Journal of Labor Economics.
He joined IZA as a Research Fellow in November 2001.