Ulrike Bialas received her BA and MA in Social Sciences from Humboldt University of Berlin, where she also worked as a research assistant at the Urban Sociology department. For her BA thesis she interviewed former residents of the Pruitt-Igoe housing project in St. Louis, contrasting their memories with official representations and discourses of Pruitt-Igoe. In her MA thesis, she examined how cultural authenticity is negotiated through food consumption in traditional and vegan/vegetarian soul food restaurants in Harlem, NY. Ulrike focuses on urban sociology and methods of social research and is specifically interested in consumption, inequality and segregation, and surveillance and policing.
Colleen Campbell, prior to entering Princeton as a sociology graduate student, was a public interest attorney representing workers and unions in labor and employment disputes. She received a BA in Urban Studies and Economics from Connecticut College and a JD from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law. At Princeton she plans to study social inequality, particularly the intersectionality of issues spanning race/ethnicity, immigration, social welfare and health.
Parijat Chakrabarti graduated with highest honors from University of California, Berkeley with a BA in Sociology and in Economics. For his undergraduate thesis, he examined the rise of San Francisco Bay Area farmers’ markets in relation to burgeoning social movements. Prior to coming to Princeton, he worked on a research project at ETH Zürich analyzing network creation, migration, and knowledge transfer in Swiss higher education. He also lived and worked in South America for a time. Parijat’s broad research interests lie at the nexus of social organization and the sociology of culture, specifically in the interactions between culture, knowledge, collective action, institutions, and economic governance.
Jeremy Cohen earned bachelor’s degrees in economics and international studies from American University in 2012. Before coming to Princeton, he was a research associate at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, DC, where he contributed research to a forthcoming biography of former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan, and to projects on sovereign debt and financial sanctions. His research interests are primarily in economic sociology, particularly the sociology of finance, financialization, risk, and the governance of markets.
Xinyi Duan graduated from Princeton in 2010 in Politics, where she studied political economy, game theory, and conducted research on medical tourism in southeast Asia. She was a PhD candidate at the NYU Stern business school's marketing program. She was most recently working in Asia as the director of technology and data for an anti-human trafficking NGO. She is interested in global systemic risk, inequalities in the digital data age, and behavioral decision making.
Hadiya Jones graduated from Spelman College in 2015 with a BA in English and Sociology. Ultimately, she desires to study how black, middle-class, millennials, who are socialized in predominantly white spaces, navigate their identities. Currently, she explores black women who develop their own web series as a lens to investigate this larger question. Broadly, she plans to focus on cultural sociology, new media, and the intersectionality of race, gender, and class.
Daniela Urbina Julio received a BA in Sociology from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile and a MA in Applied Quantitative Research from NYU. Following the completion of her undergraduate degree Daniela worked as an education and social policy researcher at Diego Portales University in Chile. For her MA thesis she studied the intergenerational transmission of educational advantage in Mexico with a special focus on gender differences. Daniela is interested in social stratification, demography, education and the family. She is also affiliated to the Office of Population Research (OPR).
Herrissa Lamothe graduated from Harvard College with a B.A. cum laude in Sociology and Government. Her senior thesis, titled “Gestión-ing the State: Community Management of State-Society Interactions in Peru” received the Harvard University Albert M. Fulton Prize for Best Thesis in the Field of Sociology. Prior to Princeton, she worked for a policy research and evaluation firm, where she used mixed and ethnographic methods to facilitate the development of effective social and economic programs. Her current research interests lie at the intersection of rapid global development, cultural and economic sociology, knowledge systems, and the development of mixed methods.
Ian Lundberg received a BA in sociology and statistics from Harvard College in 2015. He is interested in the family as an institution which both shapes and responds to inequality. As an undergraduate, he investigated the effect of motherhood on women’s labor market outcomes and the association between wage improvements and men’s marriage timing. In future projects, Ian plans to continue studying the family, inequality, and social stratification.
John Maldonado earned bachelor’s degrees in Sociology and Ethnic Studies from the University of California, Riverside in 2014. For his senior thesis, he investigated the relationship between overcrowding and violence within California state prisons. In addition, he has conducted research exploring the impact of the Great Recession on higher education in the United States. While at Princeton, he plans to study international migration, immigration law, and nationalism.
Ryan Parsons is a Mississippi native with experience living and working in China and the United Kingdom. After finishing his undergraduate degree, he worked with US ROTC students in Beijing before beginning a graduate program in international development. Ryan holds undergraduate degrees in International Studies and Chinese from the University of Mississippi. He received a Master of Philosophy degree in Development Studies from the University of Cambridge, where he was a member of Darwin College, the Centre of Development Studies, and the Cambridge Centre for Climate Change Mitigation Research. Before Princeton, Ryan worked at the McLean Institute for Public Service and Community Engagement at the University of Mississippi.
Sarah Reibstein received a B.A. in Mathematical Methods in the Social Sciences, Anthropology, and Economics from Northwestern University, where she studied in Ghana for a semester and wrote an honors thesis on the discourse of economic development. She was a research assistant at Foundation Center, where she worked on topics in philanthropy ranging from the arts to clean water. She also co-directs the Post Growth Institute, a collaborative focused on sustainable approaches to global well-being. Her interests include alternative economies, inequality, sociology of culture, organizations, and mixed methods.
Ramina Sotoudeh holds a B.A. in Social Research and Public Policy, and Political Science from NYU Abu Dhabi. Her current research looks at the latent underpinnings of cultural phenomena using quantitative methods. She is interested in cultural sociology, statistical methods, institutions, and economic sociology.
Taylor Winfield graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Stanford with a major in Sociology and a minor in Anthropology in 2013. While at Stanford she studied in Spain and South Africa. For her senior thesis, she studied the impact of spiritual beliefs and practices on happiness. Since college, she has studied Talmudic and Rabbinic Law, and has carried out the immersion experience of newly orthodox Hasidic women. In graduate school she will focus on the sociology of religion, continuing to study religious women, especially those in mystical faiths, employing both quantitative and ethnographic methods.
Janet Xu received her BA in Sociology and Public Policy Studies from the University of Chicago. Her senior thesis investigated racial and class differences in child care arrangements. Before coming to Princeton, she worked at NORC at the University of Chicago on the National Social Life, Health, and Aging Project. Janet is interested in demography, immigration, social stratification and spatial inequality, and race/ethnicity. She is also part of the Office of Population Research.
Simone Zhang holds a B.A. in Sociology from Harvard College. Before coming to Princeton, Simone conducted research on neighborhoods, K-12 education, and affordable housing at the Urban Institute in Washington, DC. She also contributed to an evaluation of the World Bank's investments in higher education in developing countries. Simone is interested in social stratification, organizational behavior, education, and cities.
Clark Bernier received his BA from Knox College in 2002, with a major in Political Economy and earned a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of Maryland in 2004, with a focus on energy policy. He spent several years doing energy policy research before co-founding a software company San Francisco tech industry. Studying social theory in his spare time, he became interested in the roles that quantification and software play in organizations and in coordination more broadly.
Jessamin Birdsall received her BA from Harvard College in 2010, graduating with highest honors in Sociology. Her senior thesis – “Divided by Faith: Religion, Ethnicity and the Boundaries of Belonging in Contemporary Fiji” – examined the interaction of religious and ethnic identities in social boundary dynamics and immigrant integration for the Indo-Fijian community. After college, Jessamin spent four years working in the international development sector, based in Delhi and in London. At Princeton, Jessamin is keen to continue investigating social boundary processes around immigrant integration and the role of religion in boundary crossing/blurring/shifting. She is particularly interested in comparative study of the South Asian diaspora in the United States and Western Europe.
Megan M. Blanchard received her BA from the University of California, Berkeley, graduating with high honors in Sociology. After graduating, she worked at Mathematica Policy Research as a research assistant and statistical software programmer primarily in education, health, and early childhood policy topic areas. Her research interests include neighborhood inequality, police brutality, race and segregation.
Kyle Chan received a B.A. in Economics from the University of Chicago and an M.S. in Political Sociology from the London School of Economics. In his master’s thesis, he argued that the Chinese Communist Party’s focus on development is in fact part of a broader political ideology of national development that has been dominant in China since the late Qing period. Before coming to Princeton, he worked in management consulting in San Francisco and London. His research interests include the sociopolitical factors underlying differing patterns of economic development, the formation of state institutions, and the transnational diffusion of ideologies.
Liora O'Donnell Goldensher graduated from Smith College in 2010 with majors in Sociology and Women’s and Gender Studies. After college, she worked as a labor and faith-based community organizer in Massachusetts and California, participating in campaigns around issues such as progressive taxation and worker protection in the care industry. Her interests include gender and sexuality and social movements.
Gozde Guran received an MA in Near Eastern Studies at New York University and a BA in Political Science from Bogazici University, Istanbul. Her research has focused on the politics of expertise in a variety of settings, including rural credit markets, transnational energy projects, and legal advocacy organizations. At Princeton, she hopes to explore the role of expertise in market arrangements, political control, and social contention in the Middle East.
Kalyani Monteiro Jayasankar received her undergraduate degree in Sociology from Mount Holyoke College in 2013. Before coming to Princeton, Kalyani worked as a research assistant at the Tata Institute of Social Sciences in Mumbai on a comparative project that explored the link between urban restructuring and structural violence in Mumbai, Rio de Janeiro, and Durban. Her previous research has explored the impact of urban redevelopment on community life in an informal settlement in Mumbai. In graduate school she is interested in comparatively studying cities and social movements in the context of the global south.
Rebecca Johnson received a B.A. studying psychology (honors) with a minor in economics, and an M.A. in modern religious thought, ethics, and philosophy, each from Stanford University. Before coming to Princeton, she was a research fellow at the National Institute of Health’s Department of Bioethics. Previous research focused on cultural notions of what activities should count as paid work, ethical and historical aspects of psychiatric classification, and the effect of disease-specific advocacy groups on health inequalities. Her broad research interests while at Princeton include organizations, knowledge/medicine, and economic sociology. (web page)
Leah Reisman graduated from the University of Chicago with a BA in Anthropology in 2011. Before coming to Princeton in 2014 she worked as a researcher in the museum field, most recently on the staff of UC Berkeley’s Lawrence Hall of Science. In graduate school she is interested in pursuing work in the sociology of culture and organizational ethnography, with applications to cultural policy. Her specific interests include cultural organizations, evaluation, and philanthropy in the United States and Mexico.
Grace Tien received a B.A. from Wellesley College, where she majored in Political Science and minored in Economics in 2012. Her senior thesis was a study of China’s Boss Christians – Christian entrepreneurs whose economic success and geographic concentration has yielded them substantial autonomy – and their distinctive business practices, focusing on the synthesis of Confucian and Christian influences on business practices and management. After working as a corps member in Baltimore with Teach for America, she came to Princeton where she has served as a research assistant in the Center for the Study of Religion. At Princeton, she plans to pursue research in sociology of religion and culture and examine how these intersect with politics, business, and development in the context of China.
Hannah Waight Hannah Waight received an MA (2014) and BA (2010) in East Asian Studies, both from Harvard University. Before coming to Princeton she also spent a year at Yunnan University (2011) in Kunming, China. She is broadly interested in economic sociology, social theory, and mixed method approaches. She is pursuing research related to household economies and household finance in contemporary China.
Amanda Cheong graduated with a B.A. (Hons) in Sociology from the University of British Columbia in 2012. Her research interests include the human rights crisis of statelessness, nation-building, migration, and race/ethnicity. Prior to coming to Princeton, Amanda worked with stateless and undocumented communities in Malaysia as part of a local child rights legal advocacy organization. She received a United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Award for Statelessness Research for her undergraduate thesis on the civic attitudes of stateless Chinese-Bruneian immigrants.
Sharon Cornelissen received her B.A. in Liberal Arts and Sciences at University College Utrecht (the Netherlands) and her M.A. in Sociology at the New School for Social Research. During her Master’s she did participant-observation fieldwork with dumpster divers in New York City. Her areas of interest include ethnography, inequality, consumption and the sociology of culture.
Leah Gillion received her MA in Math Education from the University of Rochester and her BS in economics from Florida A&M University. For the past seven years, she has taught mathematics in urban city school districts. Her teaching experiences have influenced her research interest in the sociology of education. More specifically, her interests include education inequality, race and ethnicity, and public policy.
Samantha Jaroszewski graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2013 with a BA in Sociology with honors and distinction and minors in Women’s Studies and the Study of Christianity and Culture. While at UNC, Sam worked as a research assistant in sociology, a demography trainee at the Carolina Population Center, and a tutor at the Writing Center. Her research interests include social theory, gender, and religion.
Andrés Lajous, Master’s in City Planning (MIT); BA Political Science and International Relations. (CIDE, México City). Before coming to Princeton, Andrés worked as a journalist and editor in Mexico. His main areas of interest are political sociology and urban studies. He is particularly interested in state-formation, institutions and intuitional capacity, violence, and Latin America.
Andrew Ledford has an undergraduate degree in Ocean Engineering with a minor in Spanish as well as a master's degree in International Relations. His focus will be on Iranian Studies and Social Network Analysis. He has a working knowledge of Spanish and Arabic and is currently learning Persian. In addition to spending time with his wife and four children, he enjoys surfing, skydiving, and dog training.
Joel Mittleman (SOC) received a B.A. in Economics from Swarthmore College in 2009. After graduation, he worked for two years as a research assistant in the Urban Institute's Education Policy Center. As a Marshall Scholar, he studied Comparative Education at London's Institute of Education and Philosophy and Public Policy at the London School of Economics. He is interested in stratification, sociology of education, sociology of the family, and organizational theory. For more information, visit his website.
Sophie Moullin is in the joint program in Sociology and Social Policy with the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. She received a B.A. in Social and Political Science from the University of Cambridge, and a Masters in Quantitative Methods in the Social Sciences from Columbia University, where she was a US-UK Fulbright Scholar. Between 2008 and 2010, Sophie was a Senior Policy Advisor in social policy in the UK Prime Minister's strategy unit. A member of Princeton’s Office of Population Research, she is primarily interested in inequality, social mobility, demography, and child and family wellbeing.
Nicole Pangborn earned a BA in Mathematics from Johns Hopkins University and an MPhil in Applied Biological Anthropology from the University of Cambridge. Her MPhil thesis used the frequencies of certain food- and eating-related terms in 38 million Twitter posts to detect regional obesity trends in the continental United States. After graduation, Nicole continued to analyze Twitter data while working for social search engine Topsy in San Francisco. Her broad areas of interest include web-based social research and spatial patterns of health-related ideologies. (website)
Emilce Santana received a B.A. in Sociology from the University of Pennsylvania (2013). As an undergrad, she has done qualitative work exploring the life goals of Mexican immigrant families in new destination areas. For Emilce’s senior thesis, she used a quantitative approach to examine how the teacher-student relationship relates to the educational outcomes of children of Latino immigrants. Her research interests broadly include immigration, social stratification and race/ethnicity.
David Schwartz graduated from Hamilton College in 2013 with a B.A. in Sociology and Government. His undergraduate honors thesis investigated the impact of foreclosure on neighborhood life in the Sun Belt. While attending Hamilton, David worked on survey development at the Bureau of Labor Statistics and studied refugee networks in Utica, New York. His research interests include neighborhood effects, suburban development, urban institutions, and survey methodology.
Martin Sybblis, B.A., University of Connecticut; M.P.P., Princeton University – Woodrow Wilson School; J.D., University of Michigan Law School. Martin was a corporate lawyer in Boston, MA and a local government lawyer in Miami, FL before he began his graduate studies at Princeton. He also served as a consultant to the World Bank and a law clerk to the Hon. Marcia G. Cooke in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida. Martin is a member of the Massachusetts, Florida and Washington, DC. bars. His research interests include the sociology of development, political sociology and sociology of law.
Mélanie Terrasse graduated with a B.A. in Sociology from Franklin and Marshall College in 2013. Her senior thesis examined the portrayal of ethnic minority characters in popular French films. Her research interests include comparative and historical sociology, race and ethnic relations, immigration and national identity.
received a B.A. in Political Science from Stanford University and an M.A. in Quantitative Methods in the Social Sciences from Columbia University. His work experience before beginning graduate studies at Princeton included consulting to pension funds and investment managers. Jason’s academic interests include risk, complexity and governance in economic institutions, as well as economic and organizational sociology more broadly.
Han Zhang, B.S., Computer Science and B.A., History (Minor), Peking University (2013). Han's board research interests include social networks, computational social science, quantitative methods, and historical sociology. He conducted a computational-model based study of relative deprivation, showing that, under certain assumptions, feelings about inequality may vary (given constant real levels of inequality) based on the relationship between the number of friends one has, the number of friends one’s friends have, and the correlation between number of friends and own income. He also hopes to explore methods of doing social science research with online data. For more information, you can visit his webpage.
Cheng Cheng graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2012 with a BA in Sociology with Concentration in Analysis and Research. Her areas of interest include aging, demography, and family sociology. Her senior honors thesis examined the interactive effects of retirement and children on the mental health of older Americans. While at UW-Madison, she worked as a research assistant in Wisconsin’s Applied Population Lab and for the Wisconsin Scholars Longitudinal Study. Cheng is also part of the Office of Population Research.
Angela Dixon received a B.S. in Psychology and Political Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (2011). Prior to coming to Princeton in fall 2012, she lived in 11 countries as a volunteer with local organizations. Her experiences in a variety of cross-national contexts (including Singapore, England, Tanzania, and Mexico) have prompted a strong interest in the cultural construction of race and its implications for social and economic mobility for people of African descent. Her research interests include race/ethnicity, sociology of education, and social stratification.
Heba Gowayed earned a BA in Political Science from the American University in Cairo (AUC) and an MA in Sociology from Columbia University. Upon graduating from the AUC, she became a researcher at the Social Research Center of the same institution, on a team that designed and oversaw the implementation of the Egyptian Conditional Cash transfer; a poverty alleviation program. Heba's areas of interest include Economic Sociology and Social Policy.
Caroline Holcombe received her B.A. in Sociology and the Study of Women, Gender, and Sexuality from Rice University (2009). Since graduating, she has worked her way from a research intern to director of social measurement and evaluation at Children at Risk in Houston, devoting much of her attention to the use of data in education. She is interested in the sociology of the family, sociology of education, and stratification.
Sarah James graduated from Rice University in 2012 with a B.A. in Sociology and a Minor in Business. Her research interests include education, demography, and family, and she is also a part of the Office of Population Research. Her undergraduate honors thesis examined attitudes toward undocumented immigration policies among residents of Houston, Texas. While at Rice, Sarah was also a part of the NSF-funded Perceptions of Women Academic Scientists study and Religion and Public Life Program.
Allison Kenney, B.A. Public Policy Studies and German Languages & Literature, Duke University. Following her undergraduate degree, Allison spent one year in Essen, Germany as a Fulbright Fellow and then three years in Chicago, Illinois working for the Distributed Leadership Study at Northwestern University’s School of Education and Social Policy. Her research interests include sociology of education, organizational studies, and leadership.
Jean Nava earned B.A.'s in Sociology, Economics, and Mathematics at The University of Texas at Austin. His Honors thesis explored the impact emigration has had on population structure in Mexico on a state and regional level by examining census data and providing a brief historical analysis of Mexico-to-U.S. migration. His research interests include political economy, economic sociology, neoliberalism and globalization, the international flow of labor, and macroeconomic processes in general.
Kendall Park, B.A. in Sociology and Psychology from Vanderbilt University. While at Vanderbilt, Kendall’s worked as in a Neuroscience and Psychology lab. Her honors thesis examined gendered images of mental illness in the media. After graduation, her work focused on cultural institutions and policy. Her current research interests include economic sociology, consumer studies, and the sociology of culture. More specifically, her dissertation traces the evolution of ethical consumption.
Cary Beckwith comes to sociology with a background in publishing, community organizing, and waiting tables. As a graduate student he is interested broadly in the sociology of markets, culture, and knowledge. He is particularly interested in how people negotiate the market's influence on areas of life considered off-limits to the market. He has a B.A. in philosophy from Amherst College.
Janeria Easley graduated from Duke University in 2011 with a BA in sociology and in English. Janeria's past work has addressed racial disparities in the transmission of wealth across generations. Her research interests include race/ethnicity, stratification and mobility, and neighborhood effects. She is interested in continuing to develop projects that explore racial differences in intergenerational mobility.
Linsey Edwards, MA Sociology of Education (New York University); BA Journalism (University of Maryland, College Park). Following the completion of her undergraduate degree, Linsey worked as an education researcher at the Metropolitan Center for Urban Education while a graduate student at NYU, and most recently at the Community College Research Center at Teachers College. She has also spent several years in K-12 education and college access programming in New York City. Linsey’s research interests are in education, social inequality, race/ethnicity, gender, and neighborhoods/residential segregation.
Alfredo García, BS, Duke University. MTS, Harvard University. Alfredo's current research interests focus on the arts and urban renewal in Wynwood, Miami. He is currently conducting a multi-year ethnography of the neighborhood, which was once the Puerto Rican barrio of Miami and is now one of the most popular arts districts in the area. In the past, Alfredo has focused on the segment of the U.S. population that identifies itself as having "no religion" on surveys, a diverse group that includes the irreligious, unreligious, anti-religious, and anti-clerical. Of particular interest to Alfredo have been those who disaffiliate from their religion of birth and also those who join secular organizations such as American Atheists, Humanist societies, etc. (website)
Aaron Gottlieb, B.A., Public Affairs and Political Science, Syracuse University; M.S., Social Welfare Policy, Columbia University. Aaron is interested in exploring the life-course effects of childhood poverty, especially pertaining to education and criminal justice outcomes. He is currently using Fragile Families data to examine the relationship between the Great Recession and private financial transfers. Aaron is also part of OPR.
Yossi Harpaz, M.A., Sociology and Anthropology, Tel-Aviv University (2009). Yossi's dissertation project examines the global implications of states' increasing acceptance of dual nationality. It draws on statistics from a large number of countries as well as in-depth interviews with dual citizens in Serbia, Mexico and Israel. Yossi's broader research interests include globalization, nationalism and ethnicity, migration and the state. His work was published in the journals International Migration Review, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies and Megamot.
Glenn Harrison, B.A. Sociology, Reed College. Glenn's main interests lie in the intersection of sociology of culture, economic sociology and network analysis. His previous research examined the network of collaborations between popular music artists, with results suggesting that more collaborative artists experienced higher rates of success than their noncollaborative peers.
Heather Kugelmass earned an M.A. in Quantitative Methods in the Social Sciences (Columbia University) and a B.A. in Psychology (Stony Brook University). Heather’s areas of interest include racial inequality, mental illness, postsecondary education, and experimental methods. Prior to joining Princeton's graduate program, Heather worked in postsecondary education assessment. Her current research focuses on disparities in access to mental health care.
Melanie Wright, B.A. in Public Policy and Theater Studies, Duke University. Melanie's research interests include the causes of the achievement gap during early childhood, particularly from a family neighborhood perspective. She is also interested in the government's role in mitigating inequalities among children. Before graduate school, she worked as a research assistant on the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Project and researched social capital among disadvantaged single mothers.
Edward Berchick, B.A., Health & Societies and Philosophy, University of Pennsylvania; M.P.H., Yale University. Edward's research focuses on the relationship between health and inequality across people, populations, and cohorts. His previous research examined socieconomic inequality and the health consequences of involuntary job loss. He is in the joint degree program in social policy and the Office of Population Research.
Angelina Grigoryeva graduated with a BA in Sociology from the State University-Higher School of Economics (Moscow, Russia) in 2010. Her broad interests include economic sociology, social inequlity, and quantitative methods.
Patrick Ishizuka, B.A. Philosophy, Santa Clara University. Patrick’s research focuses on the intersection of work, family, and gender. Prior to coming to Princeton, he worked for several years in education, both in the United States and in Europe. Patrick is affiliated with the Office of Population Research and is in the joint degree program in sociology and social policy.
Scott Moskowitz is interested in the way culture, politics and economics converge to shape identities in the developing world. Currently he is working on the formation of class identities in the People's Republic of China. Before coming to Princeton he spent several years in Beijing working as an English teacher, journalist and general raconteur. He spent an additional year in Shanghai on a research fellowship after earning an MA in East Asian studies from Yale. He enjoys baking and hanging out at IKEAs around the world.
Arum Park, BA and MA in Sociology, Seoul National University. Arum's research interests are focused on the issues of information society including internet community, internet addiction, information policy and digital divide. For her master's thesis, she researched the impact of commercial factors on the trust of internet communities. Prior to entering doctorate program, she worked as an intern at the Internet Addiction Prevention Center in Seoul, Korea.
Alex Tham graduated with a bachelors in social sciences (honors) from the National University of Singapore in 2004. He is interested in the sociology of risk and uncertainty. Before beginning his graduate studies in 2010, he worked as a political analyst and economic strategist. Alex also has an MSc in Applied Finance from Singapore Management University and an MA in Social Sciences from the University of Chicago.
Catherine Thorkelson earned her B.A. in Evolutionary Biology of the Human Species at Columbia University. She subsequently received a M.Sc. in Human Georgraphy from Umeå University, Sweden. Her Master's thesis examined the role of immigrants' origins on chances of being overqualified in the Swedish labor market. Her broad interests include comparative contexts of immigrant integration in the US and Europe, spatial aspects of inequality, and racial and ethnic identity among immigrants and their children. She is a member of the Sociology Department and the Office of Population Research.
Seventh Year & Over
Maria Abascal, BA Sociology, Columbia University. Maria’s broad interests include intergroup relations, race/ethnicity and im/migration, nationalism, and political sociology. Her dissertation examines the impact of Hispanic population growth on black-white relations in the United States. For more information, visit her webpage.
Alexander Davis, B.S. in Sociology and Psychology, James Madison University. Alex’s research interests include culture, gender, sexualities, inequality, and organizations. His previous research has examined gender actualization on reality makeover shows and the use of fashion to mobilize multiple and dynamic gender performances. His current work focuses on the structural determinants of homophobia and the organizational production of gender categories and boundaries.
Elizabeth S Derickson, BA Psychology and Public Policy (Swarthmore College). Her research interests include urban and suburban sociology, inequality, social policy, socio-spatial relations, and culture. Her work includes studies of neighborhood gentrification in New York City, suburban affordable housing development, the social organization of urban small business, and the culture of play in city parks.
Karen Muth Fraley received a B.A. in Sociology and International Studies from Northwestern University in 2007. After graduating, she taught English in Russia for a year before receiving a Fulbright grant to do research in Armenia about the families of labor migrants. Her current research interests include international migration (particularly in the former USSR), social networks, and the intersection between xenophobia, race, ethnicity, and nationalism.
Sergio Galaz García, BA Political Science and International Relations (Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas, Mexico City). Sergio’s senior thesis use statistical methods to explore the dynamics of conflict between informal economies and the local government in Mexico City. Prior to entering graduate school, Sergio worked to introduce Budgeting for Results techniques as an internal consultant in the Mexico City Government. His interests include sociology of culture, sociology of space, and political sociology.
Denia Garcia, B.A. Sociology and Psychology (Northwestern University). Denia's interests include race/ethnicity, culture and non-profit and ethnic organizations. Her previous research was a qualitative study of status differentiation among youth in Aguascalientes, Mexico. Before starting her graduate studies at Princeton, Denia worked at a non-profit legal assistance agency in Chicago.
Kerstin Gentsch received her B.A. in Economics and Linguistics from Swarthmore College in 2005. Before coming to Princeton, she worked at the Urban Institute on an evaluation study of financial investments and child outcomes in low-income urban areas. Her dissertation is on peer and place influences in selective college admissions.
James Gibbon, BA Wheaton College. James' main interests include religion, migration and the Near East, with special emphasis on the role of Islam in modern Turkey and the experiences of Muslim immigrants in the U.S. Before attending Princeton, James spent three years in Istanbul, initially working as the finance manager for a disaster relief project and later teaching English as a foreign language.
Joanne Wang Golann, B.A. English, Amherst College (2004). M.A. Social Sciences, University of Chicago (2006). Joanne's research interests include social inequality, higher education, and family. She has worked as a senior research assistant at the Community College Research Center at Teachers College, Columbia University, and as an English teaching assistant in Taiwan under the Fulbright program. Her past research has focused on community colleges, the high school to college transition, and undocumented day laborers.
Jennifer Huynh, B.A. Sociology (University of California, Berkeley), M.A. Anthropology (University of Bristol). Jennifer's general interests include immigration, ethnography, and race/ethnicity. Her previous research included work in central/southern Vietnam with racial minorities and in the United Kingdom with first and second generation Somali immigrants. Before joining Princeton, she worked as a sociology instructor in northeast China.
Devra Jaffe-Berkowitz, B.A. University of Pennsylvania, M.A. Rice University (Sociology of Religion). Devra's interests include religion, culture, families, and minority groups. Her current research looks at the ways in which individual religious identities are formed in religiously pluralistic societies where identity involves agency - the act of choosing.
Erin Johnston, B.A. Sociology, Psychology (Rutgers University). Erin’s main areas of interest include culture, religion, social psychology, social and collective identities, and new religious and social movements. Erin’s research includes an investigation of the consequences of contextual racial diversity within US congregations on members’ congregational involvement as well as ethnographic fieldwork and interviews in the New Jersey neo-Pagan community. For more information, please see her web site.
Sarah Kaiksow is a PhD Candidate in Sociology and a Graduate Associate in the Law and Public Affairs program at Princeton University. Her research interests include women and gender studies, Middle Eastern studies, Islamic and international law, and political sociology. Her dissertation is supported by a National Science Foundation grant. Alongside her academic work, Sarah has worked with local NGOs in the Middle East to provide start-up and development support, and has served as a Technical Committee member reviewing grants from the Arab States for the UN WOMEN's Fund for Gender Equality. She holds a Masters in Socio-Legal Studies from the University of Oxford (Balliol College), a Masters in Arab Studies from the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies at Georgetown University, and a Bachelors in Sociology and Women's Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Tina Lee, B.A. Sociology (Wellesley College). Her current research uses the market transition theory as a framework to understand how market exposure influences the way in which jobs are attained. Her research interests lie at the intersections of organizations, economic, and political sociology. Before coming to Princeton, she worked as the bureau manager of The New York Times in Shanghai. Tina is a recipient of the Edna V. Moffett Fellowship.
Kathryn Li, B.A. Sociology (Rice University). Kati's research interests include religion, health, and family. She is particularly interested in examining how medicalization has shaped the professionalization of the mental health field. Her past research has focused on public attitudes towards Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and on factors that encourage father engagement.
Manish Nag graduated with an A.B. (1997) in Computer Science from Brown University. He followed this with 12 years in the software industry as a consultant and entrepreneur. Manish's sociological interests include social networks, globalization, space/place, labor markets, gender, and organizations. As a research assistant at Harvard, Manish devised a method for visualizing network data in geographic space, the output of which will be included in an AJS article on the social structure of the world polity. Manish is the creator of Sonoma, a software tool for creating geospatial visualizations of social network data. For more information, you can visit his webpage.
David Reinecke, B.A. and M.A. in History and Sociology of Science (University of Pennsylvania). David’s research interests include science studies, information technologies, economic sociology, and the sociology of culture. His past work has examined the challenge of open-source hardware, how to conduct a laptop orchestra, and the market for vintage music equipment. He recently co-taught a class at Penn on the history of science fiction—nerdy perhaps, but oh so fun... (web site)
Lauren G Senesac, B.A. Sociology and Computer Science (Furman University). Lauren's research interests include technology, culture, networks, and organizations. Her past research has included such diverse topics as neutralization techniques in fairy tales, needs of lower income residents in a neighborhood center, and the relationship between online game design and emergent norms.
Brad Smith. Since completing an undergraduate business degree (B.A., Baylor University) Brad has traveled domestically and abroad as a management consultant, survived and enjoyed life in the investment banking industry, earned a master’s degree in religion (M.Div., Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary), and directed a leadership studies program at Rice University. Reflecting this array of academic and professional experiences, his research interests include the sociology of: culture, morality, economic phenomena, and religion.
Lori D. Smith, B.A. Indiana University 2005. Lori's interests include development, political economy, organizations, and political sociology. More specifically she is interested in how organizational and institutional theories may be used to understand economic performance and interactions between macroeconomic and microeconomic processes, and to account for variation in organizational arrangements and practices. Her next project will explore the "supply-side" of democratization cross-nationally.
Mahesh Somashekhar, B.S. Engineering Management Systems, Columbia, 2005. Mahesh studies immigration, organizations, economic sociology, and networks, but he is interested in all parts of sociology. His dissertation looks at entrepreneurship and ethnic economy formation among Mexicans in new immigrant destinations across the U.S. In addition to his dissertation, he has done work on how the meso and micro levels of society connect as well as work that analyzes the evolution of social networks among the Freemasons of Washington D.C. Before coming to Princeton, he worked as a research assistant at the Urban Institute. He also served as a research assistant in sociology, anthropology, political science, and demography as an undergraduate.
Kyla Thomas, B.A. Sociology and Communication Studies (University of California, Los Angeles). Kyla’s research interests include the sociology of culture, economic sociology, creativity, and innovation. While at UCLA, she examined the increasing “corporatization” of Broadway musical theater and its impact on levels of innovation, creative success, and creative diversity in the industry.
Jessica Yiu, Jessica Yiu. B.A. and M.A. Sociology (University of Toronto). Jessica is a PhD Candidate in Sociology with a specialization in Demography. Her broad interests include race/ethnicity, immigration, social stratification and cross-national research. She is particularly interested in the adaptive processes and outcomes of the children of immigrants in comparative perspective. She is affiliated with the Princeton Global Network on Child Migration. She is a recipient of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada’s Doctoral Fellowship.