PhD Graduate Kat Kolar and Professor Patricia Erickson on the Normalization of Cannabis Use

PhD graduate Kat Kolar and Professor Patricia Erickson, in collaboration with Andrew Hathaway (University of Guleph), Amir Mostaghim (University of Guelph), and Geraint Osborne (University of Alberta), published an article in Deviant Behavior. The article explores the social networks that are embedded in the use and supply of cannabis. The authors argue that these social networks contribute to the normalization of cannabis use.

Kat Kolar obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2018. Her dissertation is titled Differentiating the Drug Normalization Framework: A Mixed Methods Investigation of Substance Use among Undergraduate Students in Canada. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at UBC researching the social integration of substance use and health inequities impacting people who use illicit drugs. Patricia Erickson is a retired senior scientist at CAMH and a Professor (status-only) in the Department of Sociology and the Centre for Crime and Socio-Legal Studies at the University of Toronto. Her research interests include illicit drug use and drug policy; youth, violence, mental health and addictions.

We have posted the citation and the abstract of the article below. The full text is available through Research Gate here.

Hathaway, Andrew D., Amir Mostaghim, Patricia G. Erickson, Kat Kolar, and Geraint Osborne. 2018. “‘It’s Really No Big Deal: The Role of Social Supply Networks in Normalizing Use of Cannabis by Students at Canadian Universities.” Deviant Behavior.

Cannabis (marijuana) has undergone a normalizing process as indicated by high use rates, social tolerance, and broader cultural acceptance of its use in many countries. Users also maintain access through extended friendship networks that facilitate the cultural diffusion of the practice. The social nature of supply is herein theorized in terms of Goffman’s understanding of activities that function to preserve a sense of normalcy as a collective achievement enabling predictable constructions of reality. Based on in-depth interviews with undergraduate students, we explore how social networks of supply—characterized by casual access, reciprocity, and sharing—contribute to shared meanings about using marijuana as an unremarkable or “normal” thing to do.

Read the full article through ResearchGate here.

PhD Graduate Kat Kolar and Professor Adam Green on HIV Prevention Science

PhD graduate Kat Kolar and Professor Adam Green published an article in Sociology of Health & Illness that outlines their content analysis of HIV prevention science funded by the National Institute of Health. Green & Kolar find that research into intervention takes a biomedical approach, but prevention research that focuses on risk factors tends to be more sociological in nature.

Kat Kolar obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2018. Her dissertation is titled Differentiating the Drug Normalization Framework: A Mixed Methods Investigation of Substance Use among Undergraduate Students in Canada. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at UBC researching the social integration of substance use and health inequities impacting people who use illicit drugs. Adam Green is an Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Toronto. His research is situated at the intersection of the sociology of sexuality and medical sociology, and aims to develop theory relevant to both areas.

We have posted the citation and the abstract of the article below. The full text is available through Research Gate here.

Green, Adam and Kat Kolar. 2015. “Engineering Behaviour Change in an Epidemic: The Epistemology of NIH-Funded HIV Prevention Science.” Sociology of Health & Illness, 37(4):1-17.

Social scientific and public health literature on National Institutes of Health-funded HIV behavioural prevention science often assumes that this body of work has a strong biomedical epistemological orientation. We explore this assumption by conducting a systematic content analysis of all NIH-funded HIV behavioural prevention grants for men who have sex with men between 1989 and 2012. We find that while intervention research strongly favours a biomedical orientation, research into the antecedents of HIV risk practices favours a sociological, interpretive and structural orientation. Thus, with respect to NIH-funded HIV prevention science, there exists a major disjunct in the guiding epistemological orientations of how scientists understand HIV risk, on the one hand, and how they engineer behaviour change in behavioural interventions, on the other. Building on the extant literature, we suggest that the cause of this disjunct is probably attributable not to an NIH-wide positivist orientation, but to the specific standards of evidence used to adjudicate HIV intervention grant awards, including randomised controlled trials and other quantitative measures of intervention efficacy.

Read the full article here.

PhD graduate Kat Kolar on HIV Prevention in Indoor Sex Markets

PhD Candidate Kat Kolar, in collaboration with Vicky Bungay (UBC), Soni Thindal, Valencia Remple (UBC), Caitlin Johnston, and Gina Ogilve, published an article in Health Promotion Practice. The authors find that there is an urgent need for HIV/STI prevention initiatives among commercial sex workers. They offer recommendations for programs to address this need in various communities.

Kat Kolar obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2018. Her dissertation is titled Differentiating the Drug Normalization Framework: A Mixed Methods Investigation of Substance Use among Undergraduate Students in Canada. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at UBC researching the social integration of substance use and health inequities impacting people who use illicit drugs.

We have posted the citation and abstract from the article below. The full text is available through the University of Toronto Library Portal here.

Bungay, Vicky, Caitlin Johnston, Kat Kolar, Gina Ogilve, Valencia Remple, and Soni Thindal. 2012. “Community-Based HIV and STI Prevention in Women Working in Indoor Sex Markets.” Health Promotion Practice, 14(2):247-255.

Community research into women’s experiences in the indoor commercial sex industry illustrated an urgent need for sexually transmitted infection (STI) and HIV education, prevention, testing, and treatment and culturally appropriate services to support the sexual and reproductive health of commercial sex workers (CSWs). This work also revealed that a high number of immigrant—primarily Asian—women are involved in the indoor sex industry. In response, the authors developed a community–academic research partnership to design and implement a blended outreach research program to provide STI and HIV prevention interventions for indoor CSWs and their clients. This Community Health Worker Model HIV Prevention and Health Promotion Program incorporated health education, primary care referrals, STI testing using self-swab techniques, and a point-of-care HIV screening test. Here the authors report on program implementation, design, and the experiences of participants and team members and provide research and vaccination recommendations for future work in this area. This work work affirms that community-based service providers can be a key entry point for indoor CSWs to access health care and sexual health promotion and education and may be a solution to missed opportunities to provide culturally and contextually appropriate education and services to this population.

Read the full article here.

PhD graduate Kat Kolar on the Legal Regulation of Sex Work

PhD graduate Kat Kolar, in collaboration with Bill McCarthy (UC Davis), Cecelia Benoit (UVic), and Mikael Jansson (UVic), published an article in the Annual Review of Law and Social Science. The article explores the legal strategies used to regulate sexual services in various contexts. The authors argue there is a need for a better understanding of the consequences of these strategies.

Kat Kolar obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2018. Her dissertation is titled Differentiating the Drug Normalization Framework: A Mixed Methods Investigation of Substance Use among Undergraduate Students in Canada. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at UBC researching the social integration of substance use and health inequities impacting people who use illicit drugs.

We have posted the citation and abstract from the article below. The full text is available from Research Gate here.

McCarthy, Bill, Cecelia Benoit, Mikael Jansson, and Kat Kolar. 2012. “Regulating Sex Work: Heterogeneity in Legal Strategies.” Annual Review of Law and Social Science, 8(1):255-271.

In this article, we examine various legal strategies used to regulate the sale and purchase of sexual services. We use three broad categories to structure our discussion: full criminalization, partial decriminalization, and full decriminalization. In each section, we discuss laws directed toward the control of sellers, buyers, and third parties. We focus on legislation and practices at the highest level of aggregation (i.e., the national, state, or provincial level), and due to limited data, we concentrate on high-income countries. We present a critical assessment of each legal approach and conclude with a call for future research on the consequences of different legal strategies for sellers, buyers, and third parties.

Read the full article here.

PhD graduate Kat Kolar on the Recruitment of Research Participants from Marginalized Communities

PhD graduate Kat Kolar, in collaboration with Chris Atchinson (UVic), published an article in Social Science Computer Review. The article explores how the internet and technology can aid researchers in recruiting difficult to find research participants when individuals may otherwise avoid participating due to fear of stigma.

Kat Kolar obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2018. Her dissertation is titled Differentiating the Drug Normalization Framework: A Mixed Methods Investigation of Substance Use among Undergraduate Students in Canada. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at UBC researching the social integration of substance use and health inequities impacting people who use illicit drugs.

We have posted the citation and abstract from the article below. The full text can be accessed from Research Gate here.

Kolar, Kat and Chris Atchinson. 2013. “Recruitment of Sex Buyers: A Comparison of the Efficacy of Conventional and Computer-Based Approaches.” Social Science Computer Review, 31(2):178-190.

In this article we draw upon data from a large-scale mixed methods investigation of clients of commercial sex workers in Canada to illustrate the potential value that understanding and integrating computer and network technology has for enhancing access to, and participation from, marginalized and stigmatized populations. In particular, we present qualitative data from analysis of our research field notes as well as an analysis of quantitative data from response monitoring and feedback features built into the actual data collection process to help support our argument that, for some populations, network technology–based recruitment strategies should be recognized as the preferred recruitment option. In addition, we discuss the potential utility and application of viral solicitation, a newly emerging computer network-based nonprobability technique, for contacting and securing the participation of stigmatized and marginalized research participants. Our recruitment of sex buyers through web-based listserves was the most successful participant solicitation strategy, generating 63.18% (n = 544) of our survey respondents. Conventional recruitment (advertising in print-based media and in adult-oriented businesses) generated few participants (2.90%, n = 25). Viral solicitation acted as an important low-cost supplemental means of recruitment, generating a further 164 survey participants (19.05% of survey participants).

Read the full article here.

PhD graduate Kat Kolar on Stimulant Use Among Undergraduate Students

PhD graduate Kat Kolar published an article in Contemporary Drug Problems that analyzes attitudes surrounding non-prescription stimulant use among undergraduate students. Students often justify using these drugs by claiming that their potential academic success is worth the risks.  Kolar argues that this has implications for understanding the concept of drug acceptability.

Kat Kolar obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2018. Her dissertation is titled Differentiating the Drug Normalization Framework: A Mixed Methods Investigation of Substance Use among Undergraduate Students in Canada. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at UBC researching the social integration of substance use and health inequities impacting people who use illicit drugs.

We have posted the citation and the abstract of the article below. The full text is available through ResearchGate here.

Kolar, Kat. 2015. “Study Drugs ‘Don’t Make You Smarter”: Acceptability Evaluations of Nonmedical Prescription Stimulant Use Among Undergraduate Students.” Contemporary Drug Problems, 42(4):314-330.

Despite the growing literature on nonmedical prescription drug use among students in North America, existing research does not investigate the potential convergences of nonusing student attitudes on drug acceptability with those of their stimulant-using peers. Analysis of 36 interviews with nonmedical stimulant prescription drug-using and nonusing undergraduate students in Canada provides insight into evaluations of drug acceptability within a competitive, top-tier research university context. Interviews are analyzed thematically with attention to practices students engage in to assess nonmedical stimulant use, and discourses students use to position the acceptability of such use. Interview results illustrate commonalities in how using and non-using students weigh the risks and advantages of nonmedical prescription stimulant use in relation to the pursuit of scholastic success. These findings are used to critically engage with the construct of drug acceptability, as conceptualized in the drug normalization framework of Howard Parker and colleagues. To conclude, recommendations are made for future research, and implications for university policies are considered.

Read the full article here.

PhD Candidate Kat Kolar on Sexual Safety Practices Among Sex Workers

PhD graduate Kat Kolar, in collaboration with Vicky Bungay (UBC) and Chris Atchinson (UVic), published an article in AIDS Care. The article explores the condom use and STI testing practices of sex workers in massage parlours and their clients. The authors find that both the sex workers and their clients use condoms for commercial vaginal sex more frequently than for oral sex and for noncommercial sex.

Kat Kolar obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2018. Her dissertation is titled Differentiating the Drug Normalization Framework: A Mixed Methods Investigation of Substance Use among Undergraduate Students in Canada. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at UBC researching the social integration of substance use and health inequities impacting people who use illicit drugs.

We have posted the abstract and citation for the article below. The full text can be accessed through Research Gate here.

Kolar, Kat, Chris Atchinson, and Vicky Bungay. 2014. “Sexual Safety Practices of Massage Parlour-Based Sex Workers and Their Clients.” AIDS Care, 26(9):1100-1104.

The Outreach and Research in Community Health Initiatives and Development (ORCHID) project examines social and structural factors that contribute to HIV/AIDS risk among women working in Vancouver’s indoor sex industry and their clients. From 2006 to 2009, two mixed method studies were undertaken in ORCHID: one exploring experiences of women working in the indoor sex industry, mainly in massage parlors, and the other exploring experiences of men as sex “buyers.” Both studies emphasize sexual health and safety, risk and protective behaviors, and related contextual factors. No analyses examining the sexual health and safety practices of massage parlor-based sex workers and clients exist in the Canadian context. To address this gap, we analyze two survey datasets – with 118 sex workers and 116 clients. Upon comparing demographics of sex workers and clients, we discuss their condom use and sexually transmitted infections (STI) and HIV testing practices. Sex workers and clients reported high rates of condom use for vaginal/anal intercourse. While both groups reported lower rates of condom use for oral sex during sex transactions, clients did so to a greater extent (p < 0.001). Condom use with noncommercial sex partners was reported to be less consistent by both groups. STI testing was higher among sex workers than clients (p < 0.001). Initiatives targeting clients of massage parlor-based sex workers for STI education and testing are needed. Future research should investigate how different types of relationships between sex workers and clients impact their sexual safety practices.

Read the full article here.

 

PhD graduate Kat Kolar on Condom Use in the Indoor Sex Industry

PhD graduate Kat Kolar, in collaboration with Ingrid Handlovsky and Vicky Bungay (UBC), published an article in Culture, Health & Sexuality. The article analyzes condom use in the indoor sex industry in Vancouver. The authors argue that context has an important impact on whether condoms are used and initiatives to encourage condom use must take this into account.

Kat Kolar obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2018. Her dissertation is titled Differentiating the Drug Normalization Framework: A Mixed Methods Investigation of Substance Use among Undergraduate Students in Canada. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at UBC researching the social integration of substance use and health inequities impacting people who use illicit drugs.

We have posted the citation and abstract from the article below. The full text is available through Research Gate here.

Handlovsky, Ingrid, Kat Kolar, and Vicky Bungay. 2012. “Condom Use as Situated in a Risk Context: Women’s Experiences in the Massage Parlour Industry in Vancouver, Canada.” Culture, Health & Sexuality, 14(9):1007-1020.

Investigation into condom use in sex work has aroused interest in health promotion and illness prevention. Yet there remains a dearth of inquiry into condom use practices in the indoor sex industry, particularly in North America. We performed a thematic analysis of one aspect of the indoor sex work by drawing on data from a larger mixed-methods study that investigated women’s health issues in the massage parlour industry in Vancouver, Canada. Using a risk context framework, condom use was approached as a socially situated practice constituted by supportive and constraining dynamics. Three analytic categories were identified: (1) the process of condom negotiation, (2) the availability of condoms and accessibility to information on STI and (3) financial vulnerability. Within these categories, several supportive dynamics (industry experience and personal ingenuity) and constraining dynamics (lack of agency support, client preferences, limited language proficiency and the legal system) were explored as interfacing influences on condom use. Initiatives to encourage condom use must recognise the role of context in order to more effectively support the health-promoting efforts of women in sex work.

Read the full article here.

PhD Graduate Marie-Pier Joly on Pregnancy and Birth Cohort Research

PhD Graduate Marie-Pier Joly published an article in BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth, in collaboration with Professor Michel Boivin (Universite Laval), Professor Anne Junker (UBC), Professor Alan Bocking (UofT), Professor Micheal S. Kramer (McGill), and Professor Stephanie Atkinson (McMaster). The article discusses the creation of an inventory of pregnancy and birth cohort studies that aims to create connections between data and researchers in the field for the benefit of maternal and child health.

Marie-Pier Joly obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2017. She is a postdoctoral researcher at Göttingen University studying the experiences of migrants from Muslim-majority countries.

We have posted the citation and the abstract of the article below. The full text is available through the University of Toronto Library Portal here.

Joly, Marie-Pier, Michel Boivin, Anne Junker, Alan Bocking, Micheal S. Kramer, and Stephanie A. Atkinson. 2012. “An Inventory of Canadian Pregnancy and Birth Cohort Studies: Research in Progress.” BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth, 12:117.

Background

A web-based inventory was developed as a voluntary registry of Canadian pregnancy and birth cohort studies, with the objective to foster collaboration and sharing of research tools among cohort study groups as a means to enrich research in maternal and child health across Canada.

Description

Information on existing birth cohort studies conducted in Canada exclusively or as part of broader international initiatives was accessed by searching the literature in PubMed and PsychInfo databases. Additional studies were identified by enquiring about the research activities of researchers at Canadian universities or working in affiliated hospitals or research centres or institutes. Of the fifty-eight birth cohort studies initially identified, forty-six were incorporated into the inventory if they were of a retrospective and/or prospective longitudinal design and with a minimum of two phases of data collection, with the first period having occurred before, during, or shortly after pregnancy and had an initial study sample size of a minimum of 200 participants.

Information collected from each study was organized into four main categories: basic information, data source and period of collection, exposures, and outcome measures and was coded and entered into an Excel spreadsheet. The information incorporated into the Excel spreadsheet was double checked, completed when necessary, and verified for completeness and accuracy by contacting the principal investigator or research coordinator. All data collected were then uploaded onto the website of the Institute of Human Development Child and Youth Health of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. Subsequently, the database was updated and developed as an online searchable inventory on the website of the Maternal, Infant, Child and Youth Research Network.

Conclusions

This inventory is unique, as it represents detailed information assembled for the first time on a large number of Canadian birth cohort studies. Such information provides a valuable resource for investigators in the planning stages of cohort studies and identifying current research gaps.

Read the full article here.

 

PhD Graduate Marie-Pier Joly on Resaearch & Policy-Making for Migrant Families

PhD Graduate Marie-Pier Joly published an article, in collaboration with Professor Anita Gagnon and Jacqueline Bocking from McGill University, in Health Research and Policy Systems. The article examines research resulting from the Metropolis Project, which began in 1996 in an effort to create a stronger connection between health research and policy-making. The authors specifically analyze what proportion of the project’s research from 1996 to 2006 addressed the ‘priority area’ of immigrant families. They find that some, but not all, of the priority themes were addressed in the research output.

Marie-Pier Joly obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2017. She is a postdoctoral researcher at Göttingen University studying the experiences of migrants from Muslim-majority countries.

We have posted the citation and the abstract of the article below. The full text is available through the University of Toronto Library Portal here.

Gagnon, Anita J., Marie-Pier Joly, and Jacqueline Bocking. 2009. “Aligning Research to Meet Policy Objectives for Migrant Families: An Example from Canada.” Health Research and Policy Systems, 7(15).

Background: ‘Evidence-based policy making’ for immigrants is a complicated undertaking. In striving toward this goal, federal Canadian partners created the Metropolis Project in 1995 to optimize a two-way transfer of knowledge (researchers – policy makers) within five Canadian Centres of Excellence focused on migrants newly arrived in Canada. Most recently, Metropolis federal partners, including the Public Health Agency of Canada, defined one of six research priority areas as, immigrant ‘families, children, and youth’. In order to build on previous work in the partnership, we sought to determine what has been studied within this research-policy partnership about immigrant ‘families, children, and youth’ since its inception.

Methods: Annual reports and working papers produced in the five Centres of Excellence between 1996–2006 were culled. Data on academic works were extracted, results coded according to eleven stated federal policy priority themes, and analyzed descriptively.

Results: 139 academic works were reviewed. All federal priority themes, but few specific policy questions were addressed. The greatest volume of policy relevant works were identified for Services (n = 42) and Education and Cultural Identity (n = 39) priority themes.

Conclusion: Research conducted within the last 10 years is available to inform certain, not all, federal policy questions. Greater specificity in federal priorities can be expected to more clearly direct future research within this policy-research partnership.

Read the full article here.

 

PhD Graduate Guang Ying Mo and Professor Barry Wellman on Networked Work

Guang Ying MoPhD Graduate Guang Ying Mo and Professor Barry Wellman (of NetLab), in collaboration with Dimitrina Dimitrova, Tsahi Hayat, and Beverly Wellman, published an article in the International Journal of Communication. The article examines how social networks impact the work of scholars and their involvement in research teams.

Guang Ying Mo obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2015. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the Ontario Telemedicine Network. Her research focuses on social networks and innovation. Barry Wellman is a retired Professor of Sociology at the University of Toronto.

We have posted the citation and the abstract of the article below. The full text is available through the University of Toronto Library Portal here.

Wellman, Barry, Dimitrina Dimitrova, Tsahi Hayat, Guang Ying Mo, and Beverly Wellman. 2017. “Venture Labor, Media Work, and the Communicative Construction of Economic Value: Agendas for the Field and Critical Commentary: Fifteen Implications of Networked Scholar Research for Networked Work.” International Journal of Communication, 11:2062-2066.

Networked work is the venture labor of workers involved in multiple teams. Scholars are a special kind of networked workers, partially involved in temporary teams to produce findings, presentations, papers, and patents. Many networked scholars are linked across universities by common interests, data stores, opportunities for research funding, and publications. Our NAVEL team’s study of 144 Canadian scholars in the GRAND network found that already-networked scholars were more likely to be recruited into new research teams. Although network members were officially equal, senior and entrepreneurial scholars were more equal than others. Despite norms of interdisciplinarity, scholars in the same subfields sought out one another. Although the scholars used multiple digital means to communicate, in-person meetings–and hence physical proximity–ruled.

Read the full article here.

PhD Graduate Guang Ying Mo on Cross-Disciplinary Communication

PhD Graduate Guang Ying Mo published an article in Information, Communication & Society that examines how communication between disciplines within research organizations affects multidisciplinary research outcomes. Mo argues that diverse networks lead to more collaboration across disciplines, which may lead to greater innovation.

Guang Ying Mo obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2015. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the Ontario Telemedicine Network. Her research focuses on social networks and innovation.

We have posted the citation and the abstract of the article below. The full text is available through the University of Toronto Library Portal here.

Mo, Guang Ying. 2016. “Examining Cross-Disciplinary Communication’s Impact on Multidisciplinary Collaborations: Implications for Innovations.” Information, Communication & Society, 19(5):673-690.

Many research organizations are shifting to networked structures to foster the creation of innovation. However, the study of the network form of research organizations is rare and the collaborative process in such networks has yet to be revealed. This study analyses the relationship between networked structure, disciplinary diversity, and multidisciplinary outputs. Using social network, co-authorship, and interview data collected from the GRAND NCE, a Canadian research network, this paper examines how researchers’ memberships in multiple projects, diversity in their communication networks, and researchers’ personal interests in developing cross-boundary ties with other GRAND members influence the production of multidisciplinary outcomes. Using a new framework to study the complex relationships between factors at the organizational, project, and individual levels, this study shows that the diversity in the communication network has a direct impact on the number of multidisciplinary outputs and the diversity in co-authorship networks, which could be the source of future innovation. The analyses also indicate that the network structure can facilitate boundary-spanning communication, and this allows researchers who are interested in multidisciplinary collaborations to carry out their desires. Furthermore, the qualitative data show that collaborators would work together in cross-disciplinary ties to identify common research topics, exchange advice, and help solve problems. Such activities are considered to be the activities that lead to multidisciplinary outcomes.

Read the full article here.

PhD Graduate Guang Ying Mo and Professor Barry Wellman on Multiple Team Membership

Guang Ying MoPhD Graduate Guang Ying Mo and Professor Barry Wellman published an article in Information, Communication & Society that examines how “multiple team membership” within organizations affects individual networks, both online and offline. The authors argue that diversity in teams and membership in multiple teams allows for greater development of online networks.

Guang Ying Mo obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2015. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the Ontario Telemedicine Network. Her research focuses on social networks and innovation. Barry Wellman is a retired Professor of Sociology at the University of Toronto.

We have posted the citation and the abstract of the article below. The full text is available through the University of Toronto Library Portal here.

Mo, Guang Ying and Barry Wellman. 2016. “The Effects of Multiple Team Membership on Networking Online and Offline: Using Multilevel Multiple Membership Model.” Information, Communication & Society, 19(9):1250-1266.

When organizations use multiple team membership (MTM) to enhance efficient use of resources, workers in multiple teams develop networks that expand across team boundaries and are linked to teams at a higher level. On such complexity in multilevel networked organizations, we investigate how MTM and team characteristics shape individual-level networks both online and offline. We explain and use the relatively new approach of multilevel multimember modeling (MMMM) to consider how the diversity of teams is related to individual behaviors and networks. Studying a large trans-Canadian network of scholars making and studying digital media, we find that MTM and diversity in teams have a positive impact on the development of diverse ego networks online (email) rather than offline (in person). We also discuss the broader implications of MMMM for understanding the ways in which networked organizations operate.

Read the full article here.

PhD Graduate Guang Ying Mo on Advice Within Research Networks

Guang Ying MoPhD Graduate Guang Ying Mo, in collaboration with Tsahi Hayat, published an article in American Behavioral Scientist that analyzes how social and network structures affect the giving and receiving of advice among researchers. The authors find that network size correlates the most with advice giving and receiving.

Guang Ying Mo obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2015. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the Ontario Telemedicine Network. Her research focuses on social networks and innovation.

We have posted the citation and the abstract of the article below. The full text is available through the University of Toronto Library Portal here.

Hayat, Tsahi and Guang Ying Mo. 2015. “Advice Giving and Receiving Within a Research Network.” American Behavioral Scientist, 59(5):582-598.

One of the central components of research-related networked work is the exchange of advice through which researchers are expected to share useful information, especially critical information that others might not possess. A key enabler for advice exchange is the minimizing of structural constraints in the organizations. In this study, we wish to gain a better understanding of how structural constraints, in the form of social and network structure, interplay with advice exchange. Our study’s focal point is the Graphics, Animation, and New Media (GRAND) network, a national research organization in Canada. By conducting a social network survey (N = 101), we were able to study advice giving and receiving among GRAND members. Our findings indicate that the centrality of researchers in the communication network positively correlates with both advice giving and receiving. However, the effective network size of communication networks more strongly correlates with advice giving and receiving, especially for the researchers who hold higher hierarchical positions in GRAND. Overall, our findings indicate that both the communication network and the hierarchical structure are strongly correlated with advice giving and receiving. Furthermore, by looking at the combined correlation between social and network structures with advice exchange, we can offer a better understanding of researchers’ interactions. Our findings are then discussed within the context of their potential implications for other studies on the topic of research collaboration.

Read the full article here.

PhD Candidate Merin Oleschuk on Community-Based Participatory Research

Merin OleschukPhD Candidate Merin Oleschuk, in collaboration with Professor Maria Mayan, Sanchia Lo, Anna Paucholo, and Daley Laing (all from the University of Alberta), published an article in Engaged Scholar Journal. The article examines the role of leadership in community-based participatory research. The authors argue that leadership in these research projects, and how it is developed, is similar to traditional leadership in many ways.

Merin Oleschuk is a PhD candidate at the University of Toronto studying the impact of social inequalities on food consumption. Her dissertation examines values and practices around home cooking.

The full text of the article can be accessed through Engaged Scholar Journal’s website here. We have included the citation and abstract below.

Mayan, Maria, Sanchia Lo, Merin Oleschuk, Anna Paucholo, and Daley Laing. 2016. “Leadership in Community-Based Participatory Research: Individual to Collective.” Engaged Scholar Journal, 2(2):11-24.

Multi-sector collaborative partnerships hold much promise in tackling seemingly intractable and complex social issues. However, they often encounter many challenges in achieving their goals. Leadership can play an important role in reducing the impact of factors that threaten a multi-sector partnership’s success. Community-based participatory research (CBPR) partnerships are collaborative and, in many cases, multi-sectored. While there is a developing literature and practice on multi-sector, collaborative partnerships, leadership in CBPR is relatively unexplored, especially at various partnership stages (i.e., formation, implementation, maintenance, and accomplishment of goal). Through the method of focused ethnography, we explored the research question “How is leadership exercised during the formation stage of a CBPR partnership?” Eighteen partners (government, community, and university sectors) were interviewed about the leadership during the formation stage of their partnership, and data were qualitatively content-analyzed. Partners explained that leadership was exercised during the formation stage through (1) individual characteristics, (2) actions, and (3) as a collective. Our findings illustrate that CBPR leadership shares many of the characteristics of traditional leadership and adapts them to support the collaborative process of CBPR, leading to a collective form of leadership. These findings have implications for the study and practice of CBPR leadership.

Read the full article here.

 

PhD Candidate Merin Oleschuk on Transnational Foodways

Merin OleschukPhD Candidate Merin Oleschuk published an article in Anthropologica that discusses the role of culinary traditions in shaping identity among female South Sudanese refugees living in Alberta. She argues that these ‘foodways’ allowed the women to exercise their agency in their new environment.

Merin Oleschuk is a PhD candidate at the University of Toronto studying the impact of social inequalities on food consumption. Her dissertation examines values and practices around home cooking.

We have posted the citation and the abstract of the article below. The full text is available through the University of Toronto Library Portal here.

Oleschuk, Merin. 2012. “Engendering Transnational Foodways: A Case Study fo Southern Sudanese Women in Brooks, Alberta.” Antropologica, 54(1):119-131.

This article explores the experiences of Southern Sudanese refugee women in Brooks, Alberta, illustrating how “foodways” (Long 2004) impact and reflect women’s conceptions of themselves as gendered, multinational citizens. When women seek out and appropriate diverse culinary traditions to create belonging within multiple circumstances, they enact agency. Women do not passively accept their fractured connections to their homeland but instead actively work to rebuild relation ships within the diversity that defines their experiences in ways that garner them power, prestige and resources to improve their lives. These movements show how gender and power are en twined in the creation of transnational belonging.

Read the full article here.

 

PhD Graduate Louise Birdsell Bauer, PhD Candidate Angela Hick, and Professor Cynthia Cranford on Toronto Homecare Workers

 

 

Louise Birdsell-BauerPhD Graduate Louise Birdsell Bauer, PhD Candidate Angela Hick, and Professor Cynthia Cranford published an article in the Labor Studies Journal. The article analyzes union interactions with homecare workers in the late 2000s. The authors use interviews with both union members and officials to study the role of social unionism, which refers to the interaction between unions and workers that involve economic and social justice.

Louise Birdsell Bauer obtained her PhD in Sociology at the University of Toronto in 2018. She researches contract academic work in universities, employment relations, and trends in unions and strikes in Canada and the US. Angela Hick is currently a PhD Candidate in the Sociology Department at University of Toronto St. George. Cynthia Cranford is an Associate Professor of Sociology at University of Toronto Mississauga and her research bridges the areas of work, gender and migration.

We have posted the citation and the abstract of the article below. The full text is available through the University of Toronto Library Portal here.

Cranford, Cynthia, Angela Hick and Louise Birdsell Bauer. 2018. “Lived Experiences of Social Unionism: Toronto Homecare Workers in the late 2000s.” Labor Studies Journal, 43(1):74-96.

This article examines workers’ experiences with a union characterized by a social unionist framing and repertoire in the political realm and bureaucratic servicing of problems in the workplace realm. It analyzes interviews with members and officials about union strategies within privatized homecare predominately provided by immigrant women in Toronto. Workers report both consensual and tense relations with clients prompting them to praise their union’s political strategies yet criticize its limited workplace support. Findings indicate the importance of framing and repertoire that connect quality work with quality care, yet indicate a complex labor process that requires more conceptual and strategic attention.

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PhD Candidate Athena Engman on Statistical Significance in Quantitative Sociology

Athena Engman

PhD Candidate Athena Engman published an article in Quality and Quantity that examines the concept of statistical significance, its history, and the consequences of its misinterpretation. She argues that the potential consequences of the misuse of the concept of statistical significance outweigh its benefits.

Athena Engman is a PhD Candidate in Sociology at the University of Toronto. She studies epistemology, philosophy of mind, and medical sociology. Her thesis probes the experiences of organ transplant recipients.

We have posted the citation and the abstract of the article below. The full text is available through the University of Toronto Library Portal here.

Engman, Athena. 2013. “Is There Life After P<0.05? Statistical Significance and Quantitative Sociology.” Quality and Quantity, 47(1):257-270.

The overwhelming majority of quantitative work in sociology reports levels of statistical significance. Often, significance is reported with little or no discussion of what it actually entails philosophically, and this can be problematic when analyses are interpreted. Often, significance is understood to represent the probability of the null hypothesis (usually understood as a lack of relationship between two or more variables). This understanding is simply erroneous. The first section of this paper deals with this common misunderstanding. The second section gives a history of significance testing in the social sciences, with reference to the historical foundations of many common misinterpretations of significance testing. The third section is devoted to a discussion of the consequences of misinterpreting statistical significance for sociology. It is argued that reporting statistical significance provides sociology with very little value, and that the consequences of misinterpreting significance values outweighs the benefits of their use.

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PhD candidate Merin Oleschuk on Authenticity and Exoticism in Ominvorous Food Culture

Merin OleschukMerin Oleschuk has published an article in Cultural Sociology that analyzes racial inequalities in gourmet food culture and the framing of food as exotic and authentic. The article is based on interviews with foodies of colour to explore how they engage with the discourse and finds that both frames of authenticity and exoticism can encourage cross-cultural understanding but also exacerbate cross-cultural differences.

Merin Oleschuk is a PhD candidate at the University of Toronto studying the impact of social inequalities on food consumption. Her dissertation examines values and practices around home cooking.

We have posted the citation and the abstract of the article below. The full text is available through the University of Toronto Library Portal here.

Oleschuk, Merin. 2016. “Foodies of Colour: Authenticity and Exoticism in Omnivorous Food Culture.” Cultural Sociology 11(2):217-233.

Omnivorous cultural theory highlights the persistence of inequalities within gourmet food culture despite its increasing democratization, arguing that foods remain symbols of distinction through their framing as ‘authentic’ and ‘exotic’. Where these two frames have been shown to encompass problematic racial connotations, questions arise over how racial inequalities manifest in foodie discourse. Drawing from interviews with foodies of color living in Toronto, Canada, this article examines how these inequalities are reproduced, adjusted and resisted by people of color. It asks: how do foodies of color interpret and deploy dominant foodie frames of authenticity and exoticism? Analysis reveals each frame’s potential both to encourage cross-cultural understanding and essentialize or exacerbate ethno-cultural difference. Participants’ ambivalent relationship with foodie discourse (i.e. deploying it alongside critiquing it) highlights how cultural capital works alongside ethno-racial inequalities, and reveals the racial tensions remaining within foodies’ attempts to reconcile democracy and distinction.

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PhD Graduate Elise Maiolino on Identity Work in Olivia Chow’s Mayoral Campaign

Elise MaiolinoPhD Graduate Elise Maiolino published an article in the Journal of Women, Politics & Policy that examines Olivia Chow’s mayoral campaign. The piece argues that racism and sexism within political campaigns requires women and people of colour to put in additional “identity work” not required by their white, male counterparts.

Elise Maiolino obtained her PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 2017. Her research combines analyses of power and authority with feminist analyses of identity to understand the role of identity in Canadian politics.

We have posted the citation and the abstract of the article below. The full text is available through the University of Toronto Library Portal here.

Maiolino, Elise. 2018. “I’m Not Male, Not White, Want to Start There?: Olivia Chow and Identity Work in Toronto’s 2014 Mayoral Election.” Journal of Women, Politics & Policy, 39(2):220-245.

This article uses sociological theories of identity work to extend the research on political leadership. Focusing on Toronto mayoral candidate Olivia Chow—a high-profile progressive politician, an instant frontrunner, and a stark contrast to Mayor Rob Ford’s populist conservative agenda—this article argues that Chow was required to negotiate and mobilize identity in ways that were different from her white male opponents. Based on an intersectional analysis of participant observation in twenty mayoral debates, this article offers three concepts that illuminate forms of identity work on the campaign trail: dispositional requirements, ideological alignment, and political compensatory labour. This article illustrates that the racist and sexist terrain of politics requires a complex set of decisions and actions on the part of marginalized candidates.

Read the full article here.