School of Social Work

David Wagner, Ph.D., MSW

Emeritus Professor of Social Work and Sociology

Office Location




Academic Degrees

  • Ph.D., Sociology, City University of New York
  • M.A., Labor Studies, University of Massachusetts at Amherst
  • M.S.W., Social Work, Columbia University
  • B.A., History, Columbia University


David was a professor at the School of Social work from 1988-2016 and is now retired in Long Beach, CA. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in History and a Master’s degree in Social Work from Columbia University, a Labor Studies Master’s degree from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and a Ph.D. in Sociology from the City University of New York.

Recent Publications

David Wagner is the author of ten books including Checkerboard Square: Culture and Resistance in a Homeless Community which won the C. Wright Mills award; The New Temperance: America's Obsession with Sin and Vice; What's Love got to do with it? A Critical Look at American Charity; The Poorhouse: America's Forgotten Institution; Confronting Homelessness: Poverty, Politics, and the Failure of Social Policy; Unlikely Fame: Poor People who made History, and No Longer Homeless: How People Get off and Stay off the Streets. In 2019 a new book entitled Poverty and Welfare in America: Examining the Facts will be published. The book if a learning tool about poverty and welfare containing 35 questions frequently asked about poverty and social welfare. See