Stephen Menendian

Assistant Director and Director of Research

Stephen Menendian is the Assistant Director and Director of Research at the Othering & Belonging Institute, and oversees the Institute’s burgeoning research initiatives and ongoing projects. In particular, Stephen leads the Inclusiveness Index initiative, fair housing policy and opportunity mapping project with the Equity Metrics team. Stephen’s research focuses on the mechanisms of inter-group inequality, “othering,” structural racism, and the design of effective equity interventions as permitted by law.

Stephen is the author of many law review and journal articles, scholarly publications and a contributor to Berkeley Blog.  Recent scholarly publications include: "Racial Segregation in the San Francisco Bay Area," a web report for the Othering & Belonging Institute, "Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing: A Reckoning with Government-Sponsored Segregation in the 21st Century" for the National Civic Review, "The Problem of Othering" for Othering & Belonging, "Opportunity Communities: Overcoming the Debate over Mobility Versus place-based Strategies" in The Fight for Fair Housing, and "What Constitutes a 'Racial Classification'?: Equal Protection Doctrine Scrutinized" for the Temple Political & Civil Rights Law Review.

Other publications include "Beyond Public/Private: Understanding Excessive Corporate Prerogative" for the Kentucky Law Journal, "Remaking Law: Moving Beyond Enlightenment Jurisprudence" for the St. Louis University Law Journal, "Parents Involved: The Mantle of Brown, the Shadow of Plessy" for the University of Louisville Law Review, and "Little Rock and the Legacy of Dred Scott" for the St. Louis Law Journal.

Stephen developed and co-authored the Institute's Amicus brief in the United States Supreme Court case of Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. the Inclusive Communities Project, cited by the Supreme Court in a landmark decision recognizing disparate impact claims under the Fair Housing Act. He also co-authored the Institute’s Amicus brief in Fisher v. Texas asking the Court to uphold the University of Texas’ race-conscious admissions policy, the Amicus brief for Mount Holly arguing that disparate impact standard remains essential to address the ongoing legacy of historical housing segregation, as well as an Amicus brief in the 2007 Seattle/Louisville K-12 integration cases to persuade the Court to sustain voluntary integration plans in the Seattle and Louisville school districts. 

Stephen is also an editor for Othering & Belonging, a journal published by the Othering & Belonging Institute, edited a number of policy briefs published by the Institute’s faculty clusters, including co-authoring the brief Responding to Rising Inequality: Policy Interventions to Ensure Opportunity for All, and chaired “Race & Inequality in America: The Kerner Commission at 50 conference,” held in the Spring of 2018.

Stephen has trained policymakers, businesses, and other institutions on diversity, inclusion, and affirmative action practices, policies, and compliance, including creative ways to improve diversity within bounds of law, and has regularly taught or guest-lectured courses on these issues. Stephen authored the State of Ohio’s new Diversity Strategies For Successful Schools Guidance, which was adopted by the State Board of Education of Ohio in May, 2012. In addition, Stephen co-authored an interim report, Diversity Strategies for Successful Schools: Recommendations to the State Board of Education of Ohio, on September, 2011 with the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race & Ethnicity. Stephen is a licensed attorney.