ASA 2018 Annual Meeting Sociology of Development Section Schedule

Session 2180: Section on Sociology of Development Refereed Roundtables and Business Meeting

Sun, August 12, 8:30 to 9:30 am, Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, Level 5, Salon C – Roundtables

Sun, August 12, 9:30 to 10:10 am, Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, Level 5, Salon C – Business Meeting


Session 2267: Cities and Development

Sun, August 12, 10:30 am to 12:10 pm, Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, Level 4, Franklin Hall 3

Organizer and Presider: Patrick G. Heller

Since the mid-20th century, poor countries have undergone accelerated processes of urbanization, and the majority of the world’s population now lives in cities. Varied theoretical approaches from the sociology of development, from modernization to dependency, have emphasized “over-urbanization” and “urbanization without industrialization”, while recent scholarship has turned to questions about the effects of neoliberal restructuring. The degree to which newer urban contexts are defined by the politics of a “reserve army of the unemployed”, clientelism and populism, has been subject to considerable debate, as has the relationship between governing institutions and social inequalities in such contexts. This panel invites contributions that address how and why cities are increasingly central for rethinking the politics of development and state-building.

  • Conflictive Clients and Peripheral Partners: Popular Participation in Market-Driven Housing Programs in Chile and Brazil – Carter M. Koppelman
  • Embedded Cohesion: The Regime of Public Goods Distribution in São Paulo, 1989-2016 – Benjamin Bradlow
  • State Building and the Rise of Urban Clientelism in 20th Century Latin America – Simeon J. Newman
  • The Urbanization of People: Development, Migration, and Schooling in the Chinese City – Eli David Friedman


Session 2367 – Frontiers in Feminist Development

Sun, August 12, 12:30 to 2:10 pm, Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, Level 4, Franklin Hall 3

Organizer: Kristy Kelley and Jennifer Keahey

This panel highlights emerging topics and issues in development theory and practice by drawing on feminist, intersectional, post-colonial, and/or indigenous perspectives. Critical questions of interest include: What are the frontiers of feminist development theory, research methodology, and practice? How can the practices of development institutions be improved by integrating insights from feminist, post-colonial, and/or indigenous approaches? The papers in this session: (1) introduce methodological and theoretical innovations in feminist research; (2) cover topics ranging from health, education, and trade to citizenship, democratization, and governance; (3) and engage findings from diverse geographic contexts. Presentations will be brief leaving time for formal discussion with panelists led by the session organizers.

  • Voice and Power: Feminist Governance as Transnational Justice in the Globalized Value Chain – Fauzia Erfan Ahmed
  • Education is the Antidote: Individual- and Community-Level Effects of Maternal Education on Child Immunizations in Nigeria – Rebekah Burroway and Andrew Hargrove
  • The “Created Biology” of Gender Stratification”: From Hunter-Gatherers to Low-Education U.S. White Men – Rae Lesser Blumberg
  • Democratization and Women’s and Men’s Well-being: Differential Temporal Effects – Barbara Wejnert


Session 2467 – States, Parties, and Movements in the Global South: Rethinking the “State” in Development

Sun, August 12, 2:30 to 4:10 pm, Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, Level 4, Franklin Hall 3

Organizers: Gowri Vijayakumar and Poulami Roychowdhury

Discussant: Patrick Heller

Traditional theories of the state have tended to conceptualize it as a unitary entity, separate from political parties and social movements. Development sociologists focusing on the global South have increasingly offered broader understandings of states, their role in development, their relation to political parties, and their engagement with civil society, including populist movements on the right and left, labor movements, feminist and LGBTQ movements, and movements of ethnic and racial minorities. This panel invites papers that offer innovative approaches to states and state programs, global development institutions, political parties, and social movements in the global South. Papers drawing on research from Africa, Asia, and Latin America, or offering comparative approaches, are particularly welcome.

  • Embedded Mutuality: Reconsidering the State-NGO Relationship in International Development Projects – Tamara Kay and Asad L. Asad
  • Inside South Africa’s Passive Revolution: Protest, Parties, and the State – Marcel Paret
  • Making Medicines in East Africa in the AIDS Era: Toward a Sociology of Developmental Foreign Aid – Nitsan Chorev
  • Peace by Committee: State and Civil Society in the Control of Communal Violence – Aditi Malik and Monica Prasad
  • When Strong States are Also Messy: Policy Articulation and Bureaucratic Competition in China’s Industrial Policymaking – Yingyao Wang


Joint Section Reception: Sociology of Development, Peace, War and Social Conflict, and Political Economy of the World-System

Sun, August 12, 7:30 to 10:00 pm, Ladder 15, 1528 Sansom St., Philadelphia, PA 19102

Ladder 15 is approximately a 10 minute walk from the ASA conference venue. Come early to get drink tickets and light appetizers!



In addition, section members may want to attend the regular (non-section-sponsored) development session, which is Sat, August 11, 2:30 to 4:10 pm, Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, Level 4, 408




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Section Awards


I am delighted to congratulate the winners of this year’s section awards. I also want to sincerely thank the members of each award committee listed below for their terrific work.

Sociology of Development Section Book Award

•             Co-winner: Ching Kwan Lee, The Specter of Global China: Politics, Labor, and Foreign Investment in Africa

•             Co-winner: Erin Beck,  How Development Projects Persist: Everyday Negotiations with Guatemalan NGOs

•             Book Award Committee: Rina Agarwala (Chair), Fauzia Ahmed, William J. Haller, Diana Mincyte, Enrique Pumar

Sociology of Development Section Faculty Article Award

•             Winner: McDonnell, Erin M. 2017.  “Patchwork Leviathan: How Pockets of Bureaucratic Governance Flourish within Institutionally Diverse Developing States.” American Sociological Review 82(3): 476-510.

•             Honorable Mention: Tuğal, Cihan. 2017. “The Uneven Neoliberalization of Good Works: Islamic Charitable Fields and Their Impact on Diffusion.” American Journal of Sociology 123(2): 426-464.

•             Article Award Committee: Poulami Roychowdhury (Chair), Maria Akchurin, Richard Lachmann, Michael Levien

Sociology of Development Section Graduate Student Paper Award

•             Winner: Joel S Herrera, UCLA, “Cultivating violence: trade liberalization, labor informality, and the Mexican drug trade”

•             Co-Honorable Mention: Alvin A Camba, Johns Hopkins, “The Contentious Politics of Capital: The Political Economy of Chinese Investments in the Philippines

•             Co-honorable Mention: Anjuli N. Fahlberg, Northeastern University, “Activism under Fire: Urban Governance and Citizenship in Rio de Janeiro’s Conflict Zones”

•             Graduate Student Paper Award Committee: Erin McDonnell (Chair), Yao Li, Laura Raynolds, Liam Swiss

Congratulations to the winners, and thanks to all those who nominated work for consideration.


Jennifer Bair
Associate Professor
Department of Sociology
University of Virginia

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Election Results


Congratulations to our new section officers:

Chair-Elect: Jennifer Keahey, Arizona State University

Secretary/Treasurer: Jennifer Hsu, University of Alberta

Council Members:  Margaret Frye, Princeton University and Joseph Harris, Boston University

Student Council Member: Karin Johnson, University of California, Riverside

Thanks to all the nominees who agreed to run for section office, and thanks for the nominations committee for their work in assembling a superlative slate of candidates:

Jocelyn Viterna (Chair), Erin McDonnell, Rina Agarwala, Ryan Nehring

I hope to see many of you in Philly in just a couple months.


Jennifer Bair
Associate Professor
Department of Sociology
University of Virginia

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New Issue of Sociological Insights for Development Policy

Dear Development Sociology Colleagues,

The Policy Brief Committee is pleased to announce the publication of another brief in our ”Sociological Insights for Development Policy” series.  This month our colleague Jennifer Keahey discusses the pros and cons of market-based sustainability using the example of Rooibos tea.

Click HERE to access the policy brief, or click on the Policy Brief Series tab at the top of this page.


Brian Dill

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Spring Sectors Newsletter

Dear development sociologists,

I am delighted to share with you the very substantial spring 2018 issue of Sectors, the Sociology of Development section newsletter. In it, you’ll find essays on the state of the field, interviews with section award winners, announcements, updates and reports of various kinds, and reminders of upcoming events of interest to development sociologists, including our ASA section schedule. It’s really worth a close look!

Thanks to the many section members who contributed to the issue, and a special thanks to our wonderful newsletter editors, Kelly Birch Maginot and Victoria Reyes.


Jenn Bair


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New Issue: Sociological Insights for Development Policy

Dear development sociologists,

I am delighted to share our latest Policy Brief, Sociological Insights for Development Policy. This issue is devoted to the very timely topic of the industrial sector. Specifically, Roshan Pandian (our section’s 2016 Outstanding Graduate Student Paper Award recipient) discusses the declining developmental impact of manufacturing employment for less developed countries.

Thanks to Roshan for sharing her expertise, and as always, to our Policy Brief editor Brian Dill and his terrific team.

Jenn Bair

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CFP: Extended Deadline for Sociology of Development Conference

Obstacles to Development

7th Annual Sociology of Development Conference

19–21 October 2018

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois

Development investments and interventions should ultimately lead to self-sustaining solutions that are supported by local governments, institutions, and stakeholders. There are many obstacles to such development efforts, however, that occur at multiple scales and extend over varying periods of time. Local actors, national inequalities, and regional policies may impede change, just as longstanding elements in the international economic system could also serve as significant obstacles to development.

The purpose of the Seventh Annual Sociology of Development Conference is to identify and explore some of the many obstacles to development present in the world today. We are seeking thought-provoking presentations and engaging conversations on numerous topics from a wide range of perspectives, approaches, scales, and disciplines. The University of Illinois is pleased to provide development scholars with an outstanding venue to exchange ideas and to explore the essential features of development’s underlying challenges.

Instructions for submissions of papers or sessions

Individuals wishing to present original research should send their paper abstracts or session proposals to

Paper abstracts should not exceed one page (approximately 250 words) and should include the title of the paper and the name, rank, institutional affiliation and email address of all authors.

Session proposals should include the name, rank, institutional affiliation, and email address of the session organizer(s). The proposal should include a title and a brief abstract (250 words maximum) that describes the session and ideally how the session fits into the conference theme. For pre-constituted sessions, please include the names, paper titles, ranks, and institutional affiliations of the presenters in the session.

The deadline for submissions is 1 June 2018. Acceptance/rejection notifications will be sent out by the middle of July.

Detailed information about the program, including the venue, accommodations, and registration information, is available on the conference website:

There is a small fee for registration: $50 for faculty and $25 for graduate students.

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