A Conversation with Francine Blau

By: Heather LaCombe & Sarah Schupp, 
Wed, 11/29/2017

Francis Perkins Professor of Industrial and Labor Relations and Professor of Economics, Francine Blau was interviewed by Cornell’s Maurice and Hinda Neufeld Founders Professor of Industrial and Labor Relations and Professor of American Studies, Nick Salvatore, for the The Legacy of Cornell Faculty and Staff series on eCommons, Cornell’s Digital Repository, on April 7th, 2017.

 eCommons is a service of Cornell University Library that provides long-term access to a broad range of Cornell-related digital content of enduring value. The Legacy of Cornell Faculty and Staff series is a “multi-media digital archive contains mainly material in The Internet First University Press (IFUP) that celebrates the contributions of Cornell people to the world of scholarship and to the life of the University and its research, service and educational mission.”

This interview focuses on how Blau's love of Cornell, career, and home life all correlate. Areas of Blau's expertise touched upon in this interview include:

  • Gender and Families
  • Immigration and the Labor Force Wage Differentials
  • Inequalities and Work and Families

Blau was career oriented from an early age. She attended the Cornell's ILR School as an undergraduate in 1963 and soon after completed her Ph.D. in Economics at Harvard University.

As she mentions in the interview, “At that time women were getting 7% of the Ph.D.’s in Economics.”

Blau goes into some detail about her own experience with balancing her career and family life by saying “I don’t want to make it sound like a walk in the park or easy… It’s hard, but there are a lot of positive features to it. When something is going wrong in one area, it might go right in another.”

Some of Blau’s works discussed in this interview include:

Francine Blau  was awarded the 2010  Institute of Labor Economics (IZA) Prize in Labor Economics and received the 2017 Judge William B. Groat Alumni Award from the ILR School.  She was also awarded the 2017 Mincer Award by The Society of Labor Economists for her lifetime of achievements and contributions to the Field of Labor Economics.

To watch the full interview with Francine Blau and Nick Salvatore click here.

To learn more about Professor Blau’s background, publications, and research click here.

Francine Blau