Eric Allen Hanley

Associate Professor
Primary office:
Fraser Hall, RM 712


Areas of Specialization:

Political & Economic Sociology, Globalization, Social Stratification, Sociology of Organizations

Teaching Interests

  • Environmental Sociology
  • Political Sociology
  • Globalization
  • Comparative-Historical
  • Social Stratification

Research Interests

  • Environmental Sociology
  • Political Sociology
  • Globalization

Professor Hanley (PhD UCLA) specializes in economic and political sociology. His recent research projects include the role of international agencies in economic transformations in Eastern Europe, the rise of entrepreneurship in the former Soviet bloc, and household survival strategies in contemporary Russia. He is also interested in globalization, more specifically the role that experts play in global social movements. Recent publications include "Property Transformation in Postcommunist Hungary" (American Journal of Sociology, 2002), "A Party of Workers or a Party of Intellectuals" (Social Forces, 2003), "The Restoration of Pre-Communist Property Relations in Eastern Europe" (European Sociological Review, 2004), and "Recruitment in to the East European Communist Elite" (Research in Social Stratification and Mobility, 2005). Areas: Political and Economic Sociology, Sociology of Organizations, Social Stratification, Globalization, and Post-communist Societies.


Has globalization enhanced the capacity of environmental movements (local, national, transnational) to limit environmental degradation worldwide?

Population growth, economic development, and rising standards of living remain major sources of environmental degradation in developed and developing countries alike.  One by-product of global economic development, however, has been the creation of systems of communication which, in turn, have opened up possibilities for transnational collective action. One of the themes of my work is an examination of the new kinds of resources which globalization has made available to individuals and groups to mount collective challenges. These resources include transnational advocacy networks, international institutions, and international norms which, taken together, have provided local and national environmental movements with new opportunities to have their voices heard.  But external sources of support and networking may have negative implications as well. By involving more moderate elements, for example, transnational advocacy networks may weaken the ability of more radical environmental activists to mobilize their bases of support at the local level. By examining the linkages between local environmental movements on the one hand and transnational advocacy networks and international institutions on the other, we can determine the extent to which globalization increases environmental movements’ power.

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