Joseph E. Potter, Professor of Sociology, University of Texas at Austin - Principal Investigator
Joe Potter is a demographer with a doctorate in economics from Princeton University. As Principal Investigator of this study, he coordinates all project components. He is highly involved in the family planning clinic surveys, the Postpartum Contraception Study, and the estimation of the demographic and economic impact of Texas' state funding cuts in women’s reproductive health services.
Much of his research over the last three decades has addressed fertility and contraceptive practice in Mexico and Brazil—two countries that have experienced dramatic demographic transitions during the last four decades. From 2006 to 2011, Joe led the Border Contraceptive Access Study (BCAS). This NIH funded project addressed the “natural experiment” that exists in El Paso, Texas where women may access the pill either in pharmacies without a prescription (across the border), or through family planning clinics in El Paso. The research took place simultaneously with an earlier round of cuts in state funding for family planning.
Joe has been at UT since 1989, and teaches courses on demographic methods and the evaluation of social policies. Outside the office, he may be found cycling, playing with grandchildren, or fly-fishing in Montana.