Gregory Schopen's work focuses on Indian Buddhist monastic life and early Mahāyāna movements. By looking beyond the Pali Canon in favor of less commonly used sources such as the Mūlasarvāstivāda-vinaya and Indian Buddhist inscriptions, his numerous scholarly works have shifted the field away from Buddhism as portrayed through its own doctrines toward a more realistic picture of the actual lives of Buddhists, both monastic and lay. In this sense, he has seriously challenged many assumptions and myths about Buddhism that had been long perpetuated in earlier Western scholarship. In 1985 he received the MacArthur Fellowship for his work in the field of History of Religion. He was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2015. Four volumes of his collected articles have been published by the University of Hawai'i Press: Buddhist Nuns, Monks, and Other Worldly Matters (2014), Figments and Fragments of Mahāyāna Buddhism in India (2005), Buddhist Monks and Business Matters (2004), and Bones, Stones, and Buddhist Monks (1999).