About the Department of Sociology

Brown Sociology brings together a dynamic group of scholars whose courses are among the most popular at the university and whose expertise has made them sought-after advisors to government and business organizations worldwide. The department enjoys an international reputation for outstanding scholarly achievement, with faculty excellence in six thematic areas: Comparative Development and Global Political Economy, Population Studies, Urban Sociology, Organizational Studies, Health and Health Care, and Environmental Sociology.

We offer undergraduate AB and ScB degree concentrations. At the graduate level, students can earn the MA and PhD degrees. These programs involve classroom study, exciting seminars, frequent guest speakers, and research presentations by our faculty and graduate students. Our concentrators and graduate students gain research experience on faculty projects, and are equipped to pursue their own research questions. Each year concentrators earning honors present their theses to faculty and students in the department and to family and friends at Commencement.

Our undergraduate concentrators leave the department with analytical and critical thinking skills that are highly prized in all fields. Upon graduation, they regularly obtain the most coveted spots in business and government. In addition, many of our students attend the most selective graduate programs in sociology, mathematics, political science, and leading law and business schools.

We have had similar success in our doctoral program, placing recent graduates in faculty positions at highly ranked universities, as well as in elite postdoctoral training programs. Other students take up posts in leading academic centers at universities and research institutions in other nations and as advisors to national governments, the World Bank, and the United Nations.

Many faculty contribute their expertise on matters of domestic policy and business development. This includes projects as diverse as consulting for some of the country’s most dynamic firms, including the Bank of America and Amazon.com, as well as working with the United States Social Security Administration to evaluate privatization proposals for the federal government’s largest program. Our faculty’s engagement with timely issues in public policy and business has resulted in coverage of our research in media outlets such as the New York TimesTime and Newsweek magazines, as well as CNN and the BBC.

Excellence within, and dynamic connections throughout: Sociology, both the discipline and the department at Brown, helps its scholars to make sense of complex social structures in a rapidly changing global environment. Welcome to Brown Sociology!