The Office of Population Research (OPR) at Princeton University, founded in 1936, is one of the nation’s oldest demographic research and training centers. OPR has a distinguished history of contributions in formal demography and the study of fertility change. Subsequent generations of OPR scholars have made significant and ground-breaking contributions in the areas of social demography, bio-social interactions, health and wellbeing, children, youth and families, poverty and racial/ethnic inequality, urbanization, migration and development, and innovative methodologies.
OPR offers a Ph.D. in demography. Students can also pursue doctoral training in demography as part of a joint degree with other departments and schools such as Sociology, Economics, Politics and the School of Public and International Affairs. The Office also trains Masters students who are pursuing public policy degrees, typically through a one-year certificate program. OPR hosts workshops and conferences, and short-term visitors from around the nation and the world.
OPR faculty associates pursue traditional and cutting edge research and teaching on a range of topics, using a range of quantitative, qualitative, genomic and mixed methodologies in the study of human population in both the US as well as around the world. For example, areas of current research among OPR faculty include poverty, housing and eviction, child wellbeing, bio-social interactions, aging and health across the life course, educational achievement, racial/ethnic inequality, epidemics and pandemics such as HIV/AIDS and COVID-19, and migration and immigration. More about Research Interests.
Affiliated Centers and Labs
The extensive breadth of scholarship at OPR is energized by several research centers which we support, house or are affiliated with including the Eviction Lab, the Bendheim-Thoman Center for Research on Child Wellbeing (CRCW) which runs the Fragile Families Study, the Center for Health and Wellbeing (CHW), the Center for Migration and Development (CMD) and the Paul and Marcia Wythes Center on Contemporary China (CCC). More about Affiliated Centers and Labs.
A weekly lecture series, the Notestein Seminars, includes presentations by distinguished outside speakers and by faculty and students.
All graduate students at OPR, regardless of their home department, reside in one of five spacious offices in Wallace Hall and receive state-of-the-art computing equipment, statistical and technical support from the staff, and generous financial support for professional meetings and workshops.
OPR students benefit from a very high faculty-to-student ratio that is conducive to one-on-one mentoring and provides the opportunity for students to collaborate on research projects and publish at an early stage of their careers.
The OPR has excellent resources available to its students. Wallace Hall, a facility dedicated to the social sciences, is home to OPR, the Department of Sociology, numerous programs of the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs, as well as research centers such as CRCW and the Eviction Lab.
Wallace Hall is also situated in direct proximity to Robertson Hall (Princeton School of Public and International Affairs), Fisher Hall (Economics), and Corwin Hall (Politics), which facilitates easy interdepartmental collaborations.
The Coale Collection
Wallace Hall also houses the combined public affairs and demography collections of the Donald E. Stokes Library. In June 2002, the University honored Ansley Coale by naming its demographic research collection The Ansley J. Coale Population Research Collection. The Coale Collection consists of approximately 39,000 bound volumes, 17,000 pamphlets and other ephemera, conference proceedings, and 4,900 microfilm reels of international census materials as well as access to over 13,000 journals and 800 online databases.