Areas of Research Expertise

Our faculty and graduate students conduct ground-breaking research in several impactful areas of sociology. The core specialty areas listed below provide a broad outline of our researchers’ interests which intersect and span multiple areas and subfields. Our graduate students are also very active in the research program of the department, many of them publishing peer reviewed articles throughout their graduate career. Read about the graduate student publications and accolades in the Student Research section of the Department News page.

Colonialism, Racialization, Indigeneity

Faculty and graduate students in this area study how social processes associated with racism and colonialism work to divide people into categories of difference, and to create and reproduce power structures and inequalities around these categories. We are also interested in studying the social processes by which some people organize to resist or counteract racism, colonialism, and their oppressive consequences.

Research faculty working in Colonialism, Racialization, Indigeneity:


Sociology of Crime and Law

All societies seek to maintain a sense of social order. Researchers in the Sociology of Crime and Law study determinants of criminal and deviant behaviour in diverse settings. They also examine the social bases and influences on the legal field.

Research faculty working in sociology of crime and law:


Sociology of Culture

Social interactions and identity formation often coalesce around cultural consumption and symbols of status. Researchers in the Sociology of Culture examine material products, ideas, and symbols and their relationship to social behaviour.

Research faculty working in Sociology of Culture:



Ideologies about gender and the role of the family structure form some of the basic building blocks of society. Researchers examine the construction of gender roles, the intersectional links between gender, status, and inequality, and the gendered structure and functioning of family life.

Research faculty working in Sociology of Gender:


Global Migration

The field of global migration studies the structural dynamics and social processes that shape migration across international borders and the social, political, and economic dynamics that contour the positions of (im)migrants in the receiving society. Core topics include forced labor migration, the politics of non/citizenship and of (im)migrant integration, the making of refugees and the ways gender and sexuality shape, and are shaped by, migration.


Health & Mental Health

Social organizations and social processes have a profound effect on health. Sociologists of health and mental health consider structural, social psychological, stress process, labeling, macro-comparative, and institutional approaches, and study both health outcomes and health providers.

Research faculty working in Health & Mental Health:



The quality of research results relies on flawless research tools and techniques. Scholars in these two areas investigate current methods and develop innovative strategies to overcome difficulties in obtaining the best possible research data.

Qualitative Methods

Research faculty working in Qualitative Methods:


Quantitative Methods

Research faculty working in Quantitative Methods:


Political Sociology

Political phenomena have social underpinnings. Scholars in this area draw on sociological theories and methods to ex-plain political protest and advocacy, state formation and governance, and policy development and implementation.

Research faculty working in Political Sociology:


Social Networks

The ways in which people interact with each other affects their health, social position and how they see their place in society. This area measures the ties between individuals to understand such dimensions of society as communication patterns, occupational success, and collective action.

Research faculty working in the Sociology of Social Networks:



Sociological theory seeks to develop an understanding of social phenomena. It builds on the works of theorists who have been observing and analyzing the social world since the nineteenth century.

Research faculty working in Sociological Theory:


Work, Stratification and Markets

Social inequalities come in many forms and derive from structural and individual factors. Researchers in this area study the impact of income disparity, patterns of inequality and status in the workplace, and the intersection of economics and social systems.

Research faculty working in Work, Stratification and Markets:


Other Areas of Expertise

In addition to these core areas, we also have a number of faculty working on: Environmental Sociology, Family, Life Course and Aging, Social Policy, and Urban Sociology.

View all research faculty