Jennifer Karas Montez
Assistant Professor, Sociology
Director of Graduate Studies, Sociology
Gerald B. Cramer Faculty Scholar of Aging Studies
Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin, 2011
Social demography, social determinants of health, women's health, spatial patterns and trends in mortality
Introduction to Sociology
Intermediate Social Statistics
Advanced Social Statistics
Karas Montez received her PhD in Sociology with a Demography specialization at
the University of Texas at Austin in 2011. Afterwards she spent two years at
the Harvard School of Public Health as a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health
and Society Scholar, and then two years at Case Western Reserve University as
an Assistant Professor of Sociology.
research examines the large and growing inequalities in adult mortality across
education levels and geographic areas within the United States. She is
particularly interested in why the growing inequalities have been most
troublesome among women. Her current work on this topic blends perspectives
from social demography and feminist geography to investigate the role of U.S.
states in shaping women’s and men’s mortality in unique ways. In another line
of research she examines whether and why experiences in childhood, such as
poverty and abuse, have enduring consequences for health during later life.
Jennifer Karas Montez, Anna Zajacova, and Mark D. Hayward.
“Contextualizing the Social Determinants of Health: Disparities in Disability
by Educational Attainment across US States.” Forthcoming at American Journal of Public Health.
Mark D. Hayward, and Douglas. A Wolf. 2017. “Do U.S. States’ Socioeconomic and Policy Contexts
Shape Adult Disability?” Social
Science & Medicine 178:115-126.
Jennifer Karas Montez, Joyce Bromberger, Karen
Matthews, Sioban Harlow, and Howard Kravitz. 2016. “Life Course Socioeconomic Status
and Metabolic Syndrome among Midlife Women.” Journal of Gerontology: Social Sciences 71(6):1097-1107.
Karas Montez, Anna Zajacova, and Mark D. Hayward. 2016. “Explaining
Inequalities in Women’s Mortality between U.S. States.” SSM - Population
Jennifer Karas Montez and Kaitlyn Barnes. 2016. “The Benefits
of Educational Attainment for U.S. Adult Mortality: Are they Contingent on the
Broader Environment?” Population Research
and Policy Review 35(1):73-100.
Jennifer Karas Montez, Pekka Martikainen, Hanna Remes, and
Mauricio Avendano. 2015. “Work-Family
Context and the Longevity Disadvantage of U.S. Women.” Social Forces 93(4):1567-1597.
Karas Montez and Esther Friedman (Guest Co-Editors), February 2015, vol 127, Special Issue of Social Science & Medicine entitled,
“Educational Attainment and Adult Health: Contextualizing Causality.”
Jennifer Karas Montez and Anna Zajacova. 2014. “Why is Life
Expectancy Declining among Low-Educated Women in the United States?” American Journal of Public Health
Jennifer Karas Montez, Erika Sabbath, M. Maria Glymour, and
Lisa F. Berkman. 2014. “Trends in Work-Family Context among
U.S. Women by Education Level, 1976 to 2011.” Population Research and Policy Review 33(5):629-648.
Jennifer Karas Montez and Mark D. Hayward. 2014. “Cumulative
Childhood Adversity, Educational Attainment, and Active Life Expectancy among
U.S. Adults.” Demography 51(2):413-435.
Jennifer Karas Montez and Lisa F. Berkman. 2014. “Trends in the Educational Gradient in Mortality among U.S. Adults
from 1986 to 2006: Bringing Regional Context into the Explanation.” American
Journal of Public Health 104(1):e82-e90.
Jennifer Karas Montez. 2013. “The Socioeconomic Origins of
Physical Functioning among Older U.S. Adults.” Advances in Life Course Research 18(4):244-256.
*Won the 2013 Senior Service America Junior
Scholar Award of the Gerontological Society of America.
Jennifer Karas Montez and Anna Zajacova. 2013. “Explaining
the Widening Education Gap in Mortality among U.S. White Women.” Journal of Health and Social Behavior 54(2):165-181.
*Won the 2012 Senior Service America
Junior Scholar Award of the Gerontological Society of America and the 2013
IPUMS Research Award.
Jennifer Karas Montez and Anna Zajacova. 2013. “Trends in
Mortality Risk by Education Level and Cause of Death among White Women in the
United States from 1986 to 2006.” American
Journal of Public Health 103(3):473-479.
Jennifer Karas Montez, Robert A. Hummer, and Mark D. Hayward.
2012. “Educational Attainment and Adult Mortality in the United States: A
Systematic Analysis of Functional Form.” Demography
Jennifer Karas Montez, Robert A. Hummer, Mark D. Hayward,
Hyeyoung Woo, and Richard G. Rogers. 2011. “Trends in the Educational Gradient
of U.S. Adult Mortality from 1986 through 2006 by Race, Gender, and Age Group.”
Research on Aging 33(2):145-171.
Jennifer Karas Montez, Mark D. Hayward, Dustin C. Brown, and
Robert A Hummer. 2009. “Why is the Educational Gradient in Mortality
Steeper for Men?” Journal of Gerontology:
Social Sciences 64(5):625-634.
Jennifer Karas Montez and Mark D. Hayward. 2011. “Early Life
Conditions and Later Life Mortality.” Chapter 9 in the International Handbook of Adult Mortality, Eds. RG Rogers and EM
Crimmins. Springer Publishers.
Jennifer Karas Montez, Jacqueline L. Angel, and Ronald J.
Angel. 2009. “Employment, Marriage, and the Inequality in Health Insurance
among Mexican-Origin Women.” Journal of
Health and Social Behavior 50(2):132-148.
Recent Invited Lectures
"The Role of SES in Shaping Disparities in Morbidity and Mortality in Midlife." Invited by the Committee on Population of the National Academics of Science, Engineering and Medicine to present at an expert meeting on "Socioeconomic Status and Increasing Mid-Life Mortality" in Washington DC.
"U.S. States and the Health of Women." Presented at the 2017 Presidential Symposium on Society & Health, SUNY Upstate Medical University.
“Why are Educational
Differences in Disability Larger in Some US States than Others?” Presented at the Center for Social and Demographic Analysis, SUNY-Albany.
“The Life Course
Perspective.” Invited by the Committee on Population and National Institute on
Aging to present at an expert meeting on “Health Disparities Across the Life
Course” in Washington DC.
Inequalities in Women’s Mortality across the US.” Invited by the National
Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine to present at expert meeting on
Women’s Health (Raising the Bar—The Health of American Women: A National
Perspective on Women’s Health) in Washington DC.
“Live Long and Prosper:
The Impact of Education on Mortality.” Invited by the PAA Government and Public
Affairs Committee to speak at a Capitol Hill briefing in Washington DC.
“Using an Intersectionality
Frame to Understand Health Inequalities.” Invited Panel, Annual Meeting of the
Southern Sociological Society, New Orleans, Louisiana.
“When Geography and Gender Collide: Explaining
Variation in Adult Mortality among U.S. States” Presented at the Population Studies
Center at the University of Pennsylvania, the Institute for Population Research
at Ohio State University, and the Center for Demography and Economics at the
University of Wisconsin.
Adversities through Educational Attainment.” Conference on Education and Health
sponsored by the NIH Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research.
“Secrets to a Long
Life: Location, Location, Location.” Science Café Cleveland, sponsored by the
CASE Chapter of Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society.
“Women’s Mortality in Southern U.S. States.” Panel
on Poverty and Health in the South, Annual Meeting of the Southern Sociological
Society, Charlotte, North Carolina.
“Women and Education.”
International Women’s Day, Turkish American Society of Ohio.
“Diverging Trends in
U.S. Women’s Health.” Population Studies and Training Center, Brown University.