Angela M. O'Rand

Angela M. O'Rand

Professor Emeritus of Sociology

External Address: 
417 Chapel Hill Drive, Campus Box 90088, Durham, NC 27708
Internal Office Address: 
Box 90088, 417 Chapel Drive, Durham, NC 27708
(919) 660-5629


My major research interests focus on patterns of inequality across the life span, with a special interest in the temporal diversity of life transitions, their consequences for later life, and the impact of institutions on these transitions over time. Over thirty-three years I have examined workplace policies related to wage and benefit structures and the impact of workers' educational, work and family histories on wage and fringe benefit outcomes. The changing employment relationship and the re-organization of retirement institutions (especially pensions) have been a central concern of my research. Most recently, I have turned to the cumulative impact of economic adversity on midlife health risks, such as heart attack. This research has uncovered the persistent effects of childhood adversity on midlife heart attack risk, especially among women. I am expanding this focus over the next few years to examine the more general question of "life course risks" and increased economic and social inequalities.

Education & Training

  • Ph.D., Temple University 1974

O'Rand, AM. "Theories of aging and the life course." Blackwell Encyclopedia of Sociology. Blackwell Publishing, 2006.

O'Rand, AM. "When old age begins: Implications for health, work and retirement." Age-Based Public Policy in the 21st Century. Ed. RB Hudson. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2005.

O'Rand, AM. "The future of the life course: Late modernity and life course risks." Handbook of the Life Course. Ed. JT Mortimer and M Shanahan. New York: Plenum, 2003. 693-701.

O'Rand, AM. "Retirement patterns." The Macmillan Encyclopedia of Aging. Ed. DJ Ekerdt. New York: Macmillan, 2001.

O'Rand, AM. "Perpetuating women’s disadvantage: trends in U.S. private pensions, 1976-1995." Women, Work and Pensions: International Issues and Prospects. Ed. J Ginn, S Arber, and D Street. Buckingham UK: Open University Press, 2001. 230-256.

O Rand, AM. "Stratification and the life course: the forms of life course capital and their interrelationships." Handbook on Aging and the Social Sciences. Ed. RB Binstock and LK George. New York: Academic Press, 2001. 197-216.

O Rand, AM. "Risk, rationality and modernity: Social policy and the aging self." Societal Impact on the Aging Self. Ed. KW Schaie and J Hendricks. Springer, 2000. 225-249.

O Rand, AM. "Social inequality." The Encyclopedia of Sociology. Ed. EF Borgatta and ML Borgatta. MacMillan, 2000. 2690-2695.

O Rand, AM, and Campbell, RT. "On re-establishing the phenomenon and specifying ignorance: research design and theory development in aging." Handbook of Theories on Aging. Ed. V Bengtson and KW Schaie. Springer, 1999. 59-78.


O'Rand, AM. "From adolescence to adulthood in the Vietnam era." SOCIAL FORCES 84.4 (June 2006): 2365-2367. Full Text

O'Rand, AM, and Shuey, K. "Old and New Risks for Workers." Research on Aging 28 (2006): 317-340.

O'Rand, AM, and Hamil-Luker, J. "Processes of Cumulative Adversity: Childhood Disadvantage and Increased Risk of Heart Attack Across the Life Course." The Journals of Gerontology. Series B, Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences 60.Special_Issue_2 (October 2005): S117-S124. Full Text

O'Rand, AM, and Hamil-Luker, J. "Processes of cumulative adversity: childhood disadvantage and increased risk of heart attack across the life course." The Journals of Gerontology. Series B, Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences 60 Spec No 2 (October 2005): 117-124. Full Text

O'Rand, AM. "Women in science: Career processes and outcomes." SOCIAL FORCES 82.4 (June 2004): 1669-1671. Full Text

Elman, C, and O'Rand, AM. "The race is to the swift: socioeconomic origins, adult education and mid-life economic attainment." American Journal of Sociology 110 (2004).

Shuey, KM, and O'Rand, AM. "New risks for workers: Pensions, labor markets, and gender." ANNUAL REVIEW OF SOCIOLOGY 30 (2004): 453-477. Full Text

O'Rand, AM. "Cumulative Advantage Theory in Aging Research." Annual Review of Gerontology and Geriatrics Special Issue (2003): 14-30.

Elman, C, and O'Rand, AM. "Perceived job insecurity and entry into work-related education and training among adult workers." SOCIAL SCIENCE RESEARCH 31.1 (March 2002): 49-76. Full Text