Victor Chen

Victor Chen, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
(804) 828-4031
Founders Hall Room 228


Ph.D. (Harvard University)


Inequality and social stratification, work and labor markets, poverty and social mobility, economic sociology, comparative social policy, labor movements, urban sociology, research methods


Victor Tan Chen is an assistant professor of sociology at Virginia Commonwealth University who studies economic inequality. Chen’s latest book is Cut Loose: Jobless and Hopeless in an Unfair Economy. Based on his research on long-term unemployment in America and Canada, Cut Loose examines how recent changes in the economy and culture are affecting laid-off workers in the auto industry and elsewhere. It also looks at what we can do to improve the situation for those who have lost out in today’s new economy. For his work on Cut Loose, Chen received the 2017 John T. Dunlop Outstanding Scholar Award from the Labor and Employment Relations Association.

With Jesse Goldstein, professor Chen is currently working on a new book on entrepreneurship and its relationship to the labor market.

Selected Publications

Chen, Victor T. (2019). Meritocracy’s Casualties. Dissent Magazine

Chen, Victor T. (2018). Adulting While Poor. Dissent Magazine.

Beware of this misleading snapshot.” Newsday, August 10, 2018.

Cut Loose: Jobless and Hopeless in an Unfair Economy. Oakland: University of California Press, 2015.

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