W. Bradford Wilcox

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W. Bradford Wilcox
WILCOX (3 of 15).jpg
Wilcox in 2017
William Bradford Wilcox

(1970-08-21) August 21, 1970 (age 51)
Other namesBrad Wilcox
Academic background
Alma mater
Doctoral advisorRobert Wuthnow[1]
Academic work
InstitutionsUniversity of Virginia
Websitewbradfordwilcox.com Edit this at Wikidata

William Bradford Wilcox (born 1970) is an American sociologist. He serves as Director of the National Marriage Project and Professor of Sociology at the University of Virginia, Senior Fellow at the Institute for Family Studies, and a Visiting Scholar at the American Enterprise Institute.

Early life and education[edit]

Wilcox was born on August 21, 1970. As an undergraduate, Wilcox was a Jefferson Scholar at the University of Virginia. He graduated with a bachelor's degree in 1992. He graduated with a PhD from Princeton University in 2001. He held research fellowships at Princeton University, Yale University, and the Brookings Institution before joining the faculty of the University of Virginia, where he is a Professor of Sociology and director of graduate studies. His sociological research centers on marriage, fatherhood, and cohabitation, particularly on how family structure, civil society, and culture affect the quality and stability of family life, and the ways families shape the economic outcomes of individuals and societies. He teaches undergraduate- and graduate-level courses on statistics, family, and religion.[2]


Wilcox has authored and edited several books, and published numerous articles on marriage, fatherhood, parenting, and religion. His work has appeared in the American Sociological Review, Social Forces,[3] and The Journal of Marriage and Family.[4]

He has published articles in more popular venues as well, such as The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Washington Post, National Review, and The Weekly Standard. As director of the National Marriage Project, Wilcox also oversees the publication of an annual report on marriage in America, entitled The State of Our Unions.[5]

In the media[edit]

Wilcox's research on marriage, religion, and family life has been featured in the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, USA Today, Slate, The Huffington Post,[6] National Review Online, National Journal,[7] National Public Radio, CBS Evening News with Katie Couric, NBC's The Today Show, and numerous other media outlets. His work is also regularly cited in academic publications.[8]


In May 2014, Wilcox spoke along with several other experts at a meeting convened by the United Nations as part of the 20th Anniversary of the International Year of the Family. His topic was "The Family in Transition: Should We Be Concerned About Declines in Fertility and Marriage?"[9]

Additionally, in February 2015, Wilcox testified before the House Ways and Means Committee's Subcommittee on Human Resources about the challenges low-income families face in today's economy.[10]


In July 2012 Mark Regnerus's newly published study titled "How Different Are the Adult Children of Parents Who Have Same-Sex Relationships? Findings from the New Family Structures Study"[11] prompted much criticism regarding its methodology and allegations that it was influenced by two politically conservative organizations that helped fund the study.[12] Later, James Wright, editor of Social Science Research, identified Paul Amato and W. Bradford Wilcox as two of the three anonymous peer reviewers who vetted the scientific methodology of this study.[13]

Selected bibliography[edit]


  • Soft Patriarchs and New Men: How Christianity Shapes Fathers and Husbands, The University of Chicago Press, 2004
  • Gender and Parenthood: Biological and Social Scientific Perspectives, Columbia University Press, 2013
  • Whither the Child? Causes and Consequences of Low Fertility ed. with Eric Kaufmann. Boulder, CO: Paradigm, 2013.
  • Soul Mates: Religion, Sex, Love, & Marriage among African Americans and Latinos, Oxford University Press, 2016


  • "A GOP Tax-Reform Proposal That Would Help The Working Class, Not The Donor Class", The Atlantic, 2017
  • "How the Church Helps Black Men Flourish in America" (with Nicholas H. Wolfinger), The Atlantic, 2016
  • "Marriage as a Matter of Social Justice", The Atlantic, 2015
  • "Obama should have talked about marriage", USA Today, 2014
  • "Marriage Makes Our Children Richer—Here's Why", The Atlantic, 2013
  • "Marriage Haves and Have Nots", The New York Times, 2011
  • "Sex and the Married American", The Washington Post, 2011
  • "Daddy Was Only a Donor", The Wall Street Journal, 2010
  • "The Generation That Can't Move On Up" (with Andrew J. Cherlin), The Wall Street Journal, 2010
  • "Five Myths on Fathers and Family", National Review, 2009
  • "The Evolution of Divorce", National Affairs, 2009
  • "Who's Your Daddy? There's more to fatherhood than donating DNA", The Weekly Standard, 2005
  • "Religion and the Domestication of Men", Contexts (American Sociological Review), 2006


  • Knot Yet: The Benefits and Costs of Delayed Marriage in America, 2013
  • The President's Marriage Agenda for the Forgotten Sixty Percent, Editor and contributor, 2012
  • When Baby Makes Three: How Parenthood Makes Life Meaningful and How Marriage Makes Parenthood Bearable (with Elizabeth Marquardt), 2011
  • When Marriage Disappears: The Retreat from Marriage in Middle America, 2010


  1. ^ Wilcox, W. Bradford (2015). "Curriculum Vitae: W. Bradford Wilcox" (doc). Charlottesville, Virginia: University of Virginia. p. 1. Retrieved May 30, 2019.
  2. ^ University of Virginia, Department of Sociology website
  3. ^ Social Forces list of publications
  4. ^ Ellison, C. G.; Burdette, A. M.; Bradford Wilcox, W. (2010). "The Couple That Prays Together: Race and Ethnicity, Religion, and Relationship Quality Among Working-Age Adults". Journal of Marriage and Family. 72 (4): 963–975. doi:10.1111/j.1741-3737.2010.00742.x.
  5. ^ State of Our Unions website
  6. ^ Lee, Amy (2010), "Technology and Divorce: A Correlation?" Huffington Post
  7. ^ Rauch, Jonathan (2012), "The No Good, Very Bad Outlook for the Working-Class American Man" National Journal
  8. ^ List of references in Sage Journals
  9. ^ Family Perspective website
  10. ^ Committee on Ways and Means website
  11. ^ Regnerus, Mark (Jul 2012). "How Different Are the Adult Children of Parents Who Have Same-Sex Relationships? Findings from the New Family Structures Study". Social Science Research. 41 (4): 752–770. doi:10.1016/j.ssresearch.2012.03.009. PMID 23017845.
  12. ^ http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2012/07/13/ut-austin-scrutinizes-ethics-controversial-same-sex-parenting-study
  13. ^ http://www.insidehighered.com/quicktakes/2013/08/02/controversy-continues-over-gay-parenting-study

External links[edit]