National Awards Honor Rank’s Recent Book

Faculty; Research

Mark R. Rank, the Herbert S. Hadley Professor of Social Welfare at the Brown School, received several prestigious awards over the past six months for his book exploring the myths of poverty in the U.S. and why those myths continue to exist. The book, “Poorly Understood: What America  Gets Wrong About Poverty,” received the runner-up award by the Society of Social Work and Research, the only book award given among academic researchers in social work (Rank also received the SSWR award in 2016 for his book, Chasing the American Dream: Understanding the What Shapes Our Fortunes). The award was presented on Jan. 14 at the SSWR annual meeting in Phoenix.

On June 20, Rank received the Silver Medal from the Independent Publisher Book Awards (also known as the IPPY Awards).  The IPPYs are considered one of the most prestigious book awards for books published independently by small presses and university presses. 

The book was also chosen as a finalist in two categories (Current Events and Social Change) by the Next Generation Indie Book Awards, the largest international awards program for indie authors and independent publishers. The ceremony was on June 23 in Chicago at the Newberry Library.  In addition, Rank was recently notified he received two National Indie Excellence awards, which are also considered a top publishing award for independently published books.

“I’m just so grateful that this book is being recognized as significant across such a wide range of readership groups,” said Rank who credited his co-authors, Lawrence Eppard and Heather Bullock, with being instrumental in putting the book together.  “The message of the book is more vital than ever to the discussions going on in America today.  Facts and research matter, and myths and stereotypes, particularly surrounding poverty and inequality, must be addressed head-on with well-grounded knowledge and arguments.”