Call for Applications: Diverse Pathways in Academia 2020

NYU’s Stern School of Business, one of the country’s top business schools, invites talented scholars who are underrepresented in our academic community and who are completing their PhD in 2021 to apply to participate in our inaugural Diverse Pathways in Academia, to take place January 23 and 24, 2020. This all-expense paid trip to New York City will provide psychology and sociology doctoral students with insight and guidance on pursuing a career as a business school faculty member. Participants will come out of the program better prepared to enter and navigate the faculty job market, and will learn about business school as an academic option.

Many of our faculty members hold doctorates in fields such as psychology, sociology, statistics, mathematics, computer science and other non-business subjects. They have found a stimulating and satisfying academic community at Stern. For example, psychologists and sociologists contribute findings of great relevance and importance to the study and practice of management by conducting research on topics such as identity, emotions, groups, diversity, judgment and decision making, person perception, and a wide range of other topics.  Others, specialists in judgement and decision making, cognitive psychology and social psychology, use their knowledge and training for research on marketing, including consumer behavior and decision-making.

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Symposium: Empire, Memory, Violence, and the Sociological Imagination

Empire, Memory, Violence, and the Sociological Imagination
Thursday, August 8, 2019
CUNY Graduate Center
Skylight Room (Rm. 9100)

Any theorization of the social that is oriented towards emancipation necessitates an interrogation of empire, memory, violence, and the ways they have come to constitute the fabric of social life. What kinds of critical projects do the defining and study of these keywords enable? This symposium puts into conversation interdisciplinary thinkers who have developed friendships by and through grappling with what the terms empire, memory, and violence mean for them personally and politically. By discussing each of these keywords in pairs, our speakers trace new ways of understanding and mobilizing these terms. By centering friendship as both a condition and a locus of epistemic insight, we hope to build a sociological grammar that disrupts the divisiveness of empire and its reverberating legacies and inheritances. These conversations can serve as a collective rubric for rewriting the sociological imagination, underscoring the intellectual and political stakes of our work in imperial times.

This event is free and open to the public. The building is wheelchair-accessible. RSVP via the Facebook event page.

Member Publication

Please check out the following recent publication by OOW members Laura Doering and Chris Liu: “From the Ground Up: Gender, Self-Employment, and Space in a Colombian Housing Project.” Sociology of Development. 5(2): 198-224.

ABSTRACT:

Self-employment is an important component of many development strategies aiming to enhance earnings and employment among low-income populations. However, women tend to earn less than men through self-employment, calling into question the effectiveness of self-employment as a tool for bolstering women’s earnings. In this paper, we identify a novel intervention that boosts women’s returns from self-employment and narrows the gender earnings gap in an informal, residential market. We argue that micro-spatial resources offer gender-specific advantages to female business owners. We show how gendered constraints on women’s labor market activity intersect with spatial resources to influence their likelihood of running a business and their self-employment earnings. Using data from a Colombian public housing complex, we find that the randomly assigned location of a resident’s apartment significantly influences women’s business activity, but not men’s. Women who run informal, home-based businesses from favorable locations earn more than twice as much as comparable women, narrowing the gender earnings gap by 58.5% and earning an income that lifts them above the poverty line. This study offers a new perspective on how gender and micro-geography intersect to shape self-employment. More broadly, it reveals how an important but often-overlooked factor, micro-spatial variation, influences economic development.

Member Publication

Please check out the following recent publication by OOW member Meghan Elizabeth Kallman (in the International Public Management Journal): “Encapsulation, Professionalization and Managerialism in the Peace Corps.”

ABSTRACT:

Much recent work has explored the implications of the pervasive professionalization that has occurred in recent decades across occupations and throughout organizational life. Using the case of the US Peace Corps, the current article expands this conversation into the institutionally complex world of international development organizations. Drawing on interview, documentary, and observational data, its goal is to offer a contextual analysis of how professionalism is understood and practiced within international development. I show how the application of managerialist models have led to an “encapsulation” of ideas of professionalization, and demonstrate how managerial encapsulation unfolds in practice. This analysis allows me to consider how encapsulation challenges and strains professional norms among Peace Corps staff. The article concludes with theoretical and practical implications.

Book Review: The Mindful Elite

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Max Coleman

As part of our July newsletter, Max Coleman contributes a review of a recently published book: The Mindful Elite by Jaime Kucinskas.

Max Coleman is a PhD student in sociology at Indiana University. His research lies at the intersection of mental health, culture, and social stratification. You can reach him at maxcole@iu.edu.

Sources of stress and anxiety are everywhere: in our jobs, in our intimate relationships, and even in our political climate. As Americans face disturbing rates of psychological distress, they have become eager for novel coping strategies. Enter meditation, a centuries-old practice that has spread rapidly in the last few decades. Yet meditation is not just a form of stress-relief: at its core, meditation offers an antidote to capitalist self-interest. By teaching individuals to detach from desire and focus instead on the neutral sensations of the body and breath, regular meditators find that they are not only calmer, but that they have more empathy, patience, and selflessness than non-meditators.

Why, then, has meditation—along with its Americanized cousin, “mindfulness”—faced such a backlash in recent years? Consider an article by Robert Purser, which recently appeared in the Guardian under the title “The Mindfulness Conspiracy.” While Buddhist meditation may have laudable goals, Purser wrote, it has been coöpted by a neoliberal system designed to reduce social issues to personal problems that can—and therefore must—be mastered with self-discipline. Building on the neuroscientific finding that “you can change your brain,” mindfulness has become a panacea for all social and emotional challenges. In this formulation, the source of one’s suffering is never in society itself; rather, suffering is based on our own maladaptive thinking, our neuroses, our clinging, our desire—and by liberating ourselves through meditation, we can not only cure these problems but render irrelevant their social foundations. Mindfulness, becomes a tool not of transformation, but of quiescence.

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Job Posting: Postdoctoral Research Associate at The University of Massachusetts

The ADVANCE-IT team at the University of Massachusetts Amherst is seeking a Postdoctoral Research Associate. The Postdoctoral Research Associate will work with an interdisciplinary team on an NSF ADVANCE Institutional Transformation Project. The project is entitled “Collaboration & Equity: the Resources, Relationships, and Recognition (R3) Model.” The team is focused around interventions in diversifying and supporting collaborative research, creating inclusive communities, and ensuring shared decision-making by providing resources, helping develop relationships, and ensuring recognition for collaborative work.

Duties will include: a) conducting a literature review to identify best practices in support of our interventions; b) supporting interventions on campus; c) conducting research on the impact of the interventions; d) sharing findings about the interventions through presentations and publications co-authored with members of the research team; e) creating toolkits based on successful interventions, for use at other universities; and f) assisting the PI or co-PIs in other activities associated with the ADVANCE project.

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