Aaron Horvath is a Ph.D. candidate in the Stanford University Department of Sociology and a former Ph.D. fellow at Stanford’s center on Philanthropy and Civil Society (PACS). Prior to Stanford, Aaron graduated with an A.B. in sociology from Princeton University and worked in public policy analysis at the Urban Institute and Mathematica Policy Research. His research explores the evolution of social, political, and economic knowledge in both the public and nonprofit sectors. Three projects center around this theme. First, his dissertation examines how public policy and government interventions became the domain of technical, scientific, and rational knowledge. This project explores how practices like cost-benefit analysis became possible in a political arena rife with incommensurate perspectives and values. Second, Aaron is part of the Stanford Project on the Evolution of Nonprofits (SPEN), a longitudinal study of the SF Bay Area nonprofit sector. The project examines the shifting meanings and practices of rationality among nonprofit organizations and the effects of rational practices on how nonprofits perceive and respond to changing social conditions. Third, Aaron has examined the historical processes by which ultra-rich philanthropists, whose wealth and influence was once considered a serious threat to democracy, came to be regarded as legitimate underwriters of public provision in the United States.
Sessions as a Speaker
- Marriott Marquis: Nob Hill Room