Vikki S. Katz

Vikki S.

Associate Professor of Communication


CI 109

Vikki Katz is interested in how low-income and immigrant children and their families adopt and integrate technology into family routines and learning experiences. She also investigates how those families manage interactions in U.S. social institutions, including schools and courts. Vikki is affiliated graduate faculty in the Department of Sociology.  She was born and raised in Johannesburg, South Africa, and lives in New York City with her husband and son.


Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California
Ph.D., Communication

Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California
M.A., Communication

University of California-Los Angeles
B.A., Communication and Urban Education


Vikki Katz examines how immigrant parents and their children address communication challenges related to social incorporation in the United States. In her research, she uncovers strategies that these families develop to learn about and understand their local environments and to address their needs. She has explored how immigrant families navigate interactions with U.S. social institutions (schools, healthcare facilities, social services, and courts) and how immigrant parents' and their children's media connections, broadband adoption, and engagement with digital technologies affect their access to a range of social opportunities. Her research has been funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Russell Sage Foundation, where she spent the 2016-2017 academic year as a Visiting Scholar.

Research Keywords

Centers, Labs, and Clusters

Funded Projects

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. “Leveraging technology for learning in U.S. Latino families.” PI ($623,034.00), 2013-2016

Russell Sage Foundation. “Family trials: Immigrant generation and Latinos’ experiences managing the Bronx Family Court system.” PI ($24,236), 2014-2015

Selected Publications

Katz, V.S., Gonzalez, C., & Clark, K. Digital Inequality and Developmental Trajectories of Low-income, Immigrant, and Minority Children. (Nov. 2017). Pediatrics, 140 (Supplement 2) S132-S136; DOI: 10.1542/peds.2016-1758R.

Katz, V.S., Moran, M., & Gonzalez, C. (2017). Connecting with technology in lower-income U.S. families. New Media & Society. Advance online publication. DOI: 10.1177/1461444817726319

Katz, V.S. (2014). Kids in the Middle: How Children of Immigrants Negotiate Community Interactions for their Families. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press.

Katz, V.S. & Gonzalez, C. (2016). Toward meaningful connectivity: Using multilevel communication research to reframe digital inequality. Journal of Communication, 66(2), 236-249.

Katz, V.S., & Gonzalez, C. (2016). Community variations in low-income Latino families’ technology adoption and integration. American Behavioral Scientist, 60(1), 59-80.

Awards & Recognitions

Rutgers University, Chancellors Scholar, 2012-2021

Russell Sage Foundation, Visiting Scholar, 2016-2017

Rutgers University Board of Trustees Research Fellowship for Scholarly Excellence, 2015

Rutgers University Leaders in Faculty Diversity Award, 2014