About Me

My books

Chronicling more than a half century of Northern California history, The Road to Resegregation is the first book to examine the region’s housing crisis comprehensively. Learn More

Housing. Water. Energy. Transport. Food. Education. Health care. The spatial contract is about ensuring these systems are built, maintained and available to all who need them, in big cities and small towns all around the world. Learn More

Housing is too expensive.

Our communities are too unequal and too segregated.

We’re not even remotely prepared for climate change, which is already here. 

In 20 years of working on housing and urban development, I’ve seen passionate people and organizations come up with creative, smart, workable answers to these problems. But a diverse set of entrenched political divides keep us from realizing those solutions.

As a practitioner, researcher, and writer, I take this challenge as my starting point. I focus on work that can build new coalitions, overcome long-standing divisions, and ultimately make more answers to our equity and environmental struggles possible. 

About me

I was born and raised in California. After almost a decade overseas, I’m back in the Golden State, living and working in Oakland. An award-winning writer and researcher, I’m the author of two books and more than 50 academic and nonacademic articles. I’m currently a Visiting Scholar at the Institute for Metropolitan Studies at San José State University, where I co-lead efforts to reimagine the Institute as a hub for the public understanding of urbanization in California. 

Prior to returning to California, I taught geography at the University of Leeds and urban studies and policy at Sciences Po Paris and other universities in France. I began my career as an immigrant rights activist at East Bay Sanctuary, where I remain engaged as a member of the board, and as a tenant organizer and advocate in New York City.  

Work with me

People and organizations interested in my strategic advising, research, and writing services should visit Schafran Strategies, email me at schafran[at]gmail.com, or visit my LinkedIn profile.

To learn more about the work of the Institute for Metropolitan Studies, visit our website, or contact me at alexander.schafran[at]sjsu.edu.

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