Jessi Streib

Nov 23, 2023

The Accidental Equalizer

How Luck Determines Pay After College

University of Chicago Press 2023

purchase at bookshop.org

Are jobs fair? In The Accidental Equalizer: How Luck Determines Pay after College (U Chicago Press, 2023), Jessi Streib, an associate Professor of Sociology at Duke University, uncovers the remarkable story of the way luck shapes the hiring process for a key strata of business jobs in America. Offering a thesis that is initially counterintuitive but clearly argued, empirically grounded, and ultimately compelling, the book introduces the idea of ‘luckocracy’. ‘Luckocracy’ underpins the functioning of important parts of the graduate labour market, and equalises what would otherwise be significant class differences between college graduates. Rich with details, as well as offering a broad new perspective on education and the labour market, the book is essential reading across the social sciences, as well as for anyone interested in understanding work, fairness, and the importance of luck.

Dave O'Brien is Professor of Cultural and Creative Industries, at the University of Manchester.

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