Joel Kotkin (born December 28, 1952) is a fellow in urban studies at Chapman University in Orange, California. He writes about demographic, social, and economic trends in the U.S. and internationally. He is a regular contributor to The Daily Beast and Forbes.com and is on the editorial board of the Orange County Register. Kotkin attended the University of California, Berkeley. A native of New York City, he now lives in Los Angeles.
Kotkin is the author, most recently, of The New Class Conflict, published in September 2014 by Telos Press Publishing. In this book, Kotkin assesses the changing complexities of class in the United States, which he argues can no longer be understood in terms of traditional political divisions between left and right or conservative and liberal. For Kotkin, the new class order of the twenty-first century is marked by the rise of a high-tech oligarchy, a culturally dominant academic and media elite, an expansive government bureaucracy, and a declining middle class.
He previously wrote The Next Hundred Million: America in 2050 (Penguin Press, 2010), in which he explored how the nation will evolve in the next four decades. Previously he authored a controversial book “TRIBES: How Race, Religion and Identity Are Reshaping the Global Economy” positing, some say advocating for, a stateless, ethnic groups based world and global economy. He has also authored The City: A Global History and The New Geography, books about city development, and has studied various major cities, including Houston, New Orleans, New York, St. Louis, and Los Angeles. Previously he was a fellow at the New America Foundation, Pepperdine University, and at the Milken Institute. In addition, he was a columnist for the New York Times, a business reporter at KTTV, earning a Golden Mic award for his reporting, and was West Coast editor for Inc. magazine.
Kotkin argues that the model of urban development as exemplified by pre-automobile cities such as New York City and Paris is outdated in many cases. Kotkin believes in a "back to basics" approach which stresses nurturing the middle class and families with traditional suburban development. He states that the current trend of growth of suburbs will be the dominant pattern around the world. As a result, one of his arguments is that rail transit is not always ideal for modern cities and suburbs.
- "Faculty Directory". Chapman University.
- "Our Group". Praxis Strategy Group.
- "Contributors: Joel Kotkin". The Daily Beast.
- "Opinion Columnists". Orange County Register. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
- Kotkin, Joel. "In the Future We'll All Be Renters: America's Disappearing Middle Class". The Daily Beast. Retrieved 1 September 2014.
- Reynolds, Glenn Harlan (September 10, 2014). "America's New Class System". USA Today. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
- Bauer, Fred (September 11, 2014). "A Divided America". National Review.
- Sohn, Ira. "Review of The Next Hundred Million" (PDF). Foresight (Summer 2010): 43–45.
- Renn, Aaron M. "Joel Kotkin on the Future of the Heartland". The Urbanophile.
- Roberts, Sam (February 25, 2010). "A Nation 400 Million Strong". New York Times.
- Keough, Robert (January 1, 2006). "Development Expert Joel Kotkin on Suburban Life: Mend It, Don't Try to End It". CommonWealth Magazine.
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