Nicholas Bloom, Ph.D., associate professor of social sciences and chair of NYIT's Department of Interdisciplinary Studies, is the co-editor of Public Housing Myths published on April 14 by Cornell Press.
The Box: Why take on the topic of public housing myths for your new book?
Bloom: Public housing is an evergreen topic of controversy and is widely misunderstood. Even the problems are poorly understood. We decided to directly address many misconceptions in our book and force scholars to move beyond easy conventional answers.
The Box: Is there a message in this book that you want readers to grasp?
Bloom: Social policy is quite complicated both in conception and execution. I hope people are inspired to move beyond stereotypes on many types of issues, not just public housing. This is really an exercise in critical thinking above all else.
The Box: What public housing myths did you explore?
Bloom: It is assumed that high-rise public housing is doomed from the start. I looked at New York and showed that it's possible to maintain this type of public housing, even in the context of many social and budgetary challenges.
The Box: What advice can you give aspiring faculty authors?
Bloom: Editing and writing are processes of collaboration, so find an editor that you trust and who seems genuinely interested in the book project.
The Box: Where can readers buy your book online?
Bloom: Check it out on Amazon.com.
UPDATE: Listen to WNYC reporter Noel King interview Nick Bloom about affordable housing for a Marketplace radio segment that aired on April 23 following publication of our story.