Kristopher Velasco

Assistant Professor of Sociology
185 Wallace Hall

Kristopher Velasco (he/him/his) is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology. His research lies at the intersections of global & transnational sociology, organizations, political sociology, culture, and sexuality. Kristopher’s research is driven by one overarching question: how do organizations and institutions facilitate social and cultural change?

Kristopher addresses this question at two scales. Globally, he investigates how transnational advocacy networks, NGOs, and international institutions facilitate the expansion of LGBTI rights around the world by changing cultural understandings of gender and sexuality. This line of research, and the backlash these processes invite, is the subject of Kristopher's current book project. Domestically, he examines the cultural dimensions of nonprofit organizations (e.g., language use, emotionality, etc.) and how these attributes influence wider society, especially when it comes to normalizing diverse sexual and gender identities.

Kristopher’s research has been published in the American Journal of Sociology, American Sociological Review, Social Forces, and International Studies Quarterly, among others. Additionally, Kristopher has received awards for his research from the American Sociological Association, American Political Science Association, International Studies Association, Academy of Management, and the Ford Foundation. Kristopher received his B.A. from the University of Kansas and M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin.

Selected Publications

Velasco, Kristopher and Pamela Paxton. Forthcoming. “Deconstructed and Constructive Logics: Explaining Inclusive Language Change in Queer Nonprofits, 1998-2016.” American Journal of Sociology.

Paxton, Pamela, Kristopher Velasco, and Robert W. Ressler. 2020. “Use of Emotion in Mission Statements Increases Donations and Volunteers.” American Sociological Review 85(6): 1051-1083.

Velasco, Kristopher. 2020. “A Growing Queer Divide: The Divergence between Transnational Advocacy Networks and Foreign Aid in Diffusing LGBT Policies.” International Studies Quarterly 64(1): 120-132.

Velasco, Kristopher. 2018. “Human Rights INGOs, LGBT INGOs, and LGBT Policy Diffusion, 1991-2015.” Social Forces 97(1): 377-404.