I joined the London School of Economics as an Assistant Professor of Sociology after receiving my PhD from Columbia University. My work studies the construction of status hierarchies and how they sustain inequality in society. It asks how we come to view different people as unequally deserving or valuable, and how this affects their outcomes. My first book, Consecrated (to be published by Princeton University Press), explores these processes in the context of the art world. It shows how, in the heyday of modern art, market institutions created value for artists — and inequality between them — by consecrating the field of modernism — that is, by asserting the existence of a reliable hierarchy of worth between artists in a field premised on constant revolution in the norms defining artistic worthiness. My current research brings these same interests to bear on broader issues of stratification and inequality. I first serve as principal investigator on a Andrew W. Mellon Foundation project using the New York Philharmonic subscriber archives to understand how cultural capital became a source of social status in the United States. The database for that project is publicly available here. My latest project relies on experimental designs to test how the quantification of employee performance in organizations breeds inequality in employee compensation. This project is supported by a Research Innovation Grant from LSE’s International Inequalities Institute.

Here is a link to my CV.

Published and Forthcoming Work

Consecrated: Modern Art in Paris between Revolution and Hierarchy. Book manuscript under contract, Princeton University Press.

"Consecration as a Population-Level Phenomenon." Forthcoming, American Behavioral Scientist.

"How Cultural Capital Emerged in Gilded Age America: Musical Purification and Cross-Class Inclusion at the New York Philharmonic.American Journal of Sociology 123: 1743-1783.

"Creativity from Interaction: Artistic Movements and the Creativity Careers of Modern Painters." Poetics 37: 267-294.

"Market and Hierarchy: The Social Structure of Production Decisions in a Cultural Market." Histoire & Mesure 23: 177-218.

Working Papers

"How the Reification of Merit Breeds Inequality: Theory and Experimental Evidence."

"Status Signaling, Rank Ambiguity, and Reciprocity in Informal Economic Exchange."


© Fabien Accominotti. All rights reserved.