USC Price School of Public Policy

Nicole E. Esparza

Associate Professor

Ralph and Goldy Lewis Hall 208
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0626

Phone: (213) 821-4237

Curriculum Vitae

Ph.D. in Sociology

Princeton University


Nonprofit organizations, networks, philanthropy, and urban inequality

Biographical sketch

Nicole Esparza, Ph.D., is an associate professor at the USC Sol Price School of Public Policy. She teaches courses on public policy and management and program evaluation. She received her Ph.D. in Sociology from Princeton University in 2007 and spent the past two years as a Robert Wood Johnson Scholar at Harvard University.

Nicole’s dissertation examined homeless assistance nonprofits in twenty-six metropolitan areas with a special focus on organizational networks in Los Angeles, Detroit, and Philadelphia. Her current research asks two major questions: How do social, economic, and political forces shape the size and growth of the urban nonprofit sector? How do interorganizational dynamics influence the effectiveness and distribution of services?

Her work has been published in the American Sociological Review and has received support from the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.