Department of Sociology
News & Events
The BGSU Department of Sociology's research, disseminated as working papers, publications, and presentations, often garners media attention. Additionally, faculty, students, and staff participate in conferences, workshops, and seminars across the country, sharing policy-relevant research on American families with practitioners, fellow researchers, and policymakers.
BGSU Sociologist and CFDR Co-director Professor Wendy D. Manning finds percentage of persons living alone has doubled since 1960 from 13 to 27%.
Sociology Doctoral Student J. Bart Stykes, Sociology Professor and NCFMR Co-director Wendy D. Manning, and Sociology Professor and Chair and NCFMR Co-director Susan L. Brown's research published in Demographic Research.
"Wendy Manning, co-director of the National Center for Family and Marriage Research on the campus of Bowling Green State University, said fertility rates decline after every economic downturn."
Dr. I-Fen Lin's research finds ..." one in three baby boomers was unmarried and the vast majority of them either divorced or never married."
Dr. Wendy D. Manning Leads Amicus Briefs Supporting Lawsuits to Overturn Gay Marriage Ban
"Researchers at Bowling Green warn that the rising divorce rate among older Americans has serious implications that go well beyond the couple themselves." -- Brown and Lin
- Divorce After 50 Grows More Common
- Remarriage Rate Declining as More Opt for Cohabitation
Dr. Ray Swisher Attends White House Research Conference. This August 20th, Dr. Ray Swisher will attend a White House Office of Public Engagement conference event, entitled "Parental Incarceration in the United States: Bringing Together Research and Policy to Reduce Collateral Costs for Children," co-sponsored by the National Science Foundation and American Bar Foundation. This mixed audience conference brings researchers, practitioners, and policymakers together to explore the era of mass incarceration and child well-being. Dr. Swisher's research shows that parental incarceration is associated with greater depression and delinquency among children, but among children experiencing family sexual abuse, incarceration can be protective.
Dr. Al DeMaris Publishes New Statistical Manual Designed for Physicians. Dr. Al DeMaris published a 2013 Springer book with Steven H. Selman (Chairman of the Department of Urology at the University of Toledo Medical Center) entitled "Converting Data into Evidence: A Statistics Primer for the Medical Practitioner." This volume is designed to help physicians learn statistics in such a way that they will have greater fluency and understanding, as they read published research in their own speciality journals. The volume uses 30 publications in the medical literature to make statistics and methodological design transparent and accessible for physicians trying to keep up with their literatures and assess basic mechanisms and efficacy of medical treatments. His approach uses his own simplicity and ease to help them read for the validity and significance of the findings.
Drs. Susan Brown and I-Fen Lin earn 2012 IPUMS Research Award. This May 2013, Drs. Susan Brown and I-Fen Lin earned the 2012 IPUMS Research Award for their article, "Unmarried Boomers Confront Old Age: A National Portrait," in The Gerontologist, 2012, 52, 153-165. This prestigious award honors outstanding research which uses the IPUMS-USA/CPS, IPUMS-International, or IHIS data to explore economic, social, or demographic processes. Their research on the changing union contexts among aging baby boomers contributes widely to basic research, public policy, and social commentary.
Our Department Celebrates Major Achievements As Spring Semester 2013 Draws to a Close. On Friday, May May 3, the Board of Trustees celebrated the promotion and tenure to Associate Professor of our own Dr. Jorge Chavez. The Board of Trustees also voted to appoint Dr. Wendy Manning as a Distinguished Research Professor. Earlier this week, Drs. Swisher, Kuhl and Chavez learned that their R15 application received funding. And soon, after 17 years as our Chair, Dr. Gary Lee will step down and Dr. Susan Brown will become our new Chair. Here is a photo from a reception celebrating Dr. Manning's achievement hosted by Drs. Peggy Giordano and Ted Groat. Notice the two Distinguished Research Professors sitting side-by-side!
Dr. Wendy Manning Appointed Distinguished Research Professor. Professor Wendy Manning was appointed a Distinguished Research Professor in honor of her extraordinary contributions to science and the outstanding national and international recognition she brings to BGSU through her research accomplishments. During her career, she has published prolifically in family demography, and founded two national research centers, garnering over $15 million in research grants. Pictures soon to follow from a celebratory reception held by Dr. Peggy Giordano, Distinguished Research Professor! Dr. Manning Honored as Distinguished Research Professor!
Dr. Wendy Manning lead's ASA's review of family structure and children's well-being research for Amicus Brief Filed with U.S. Supreme Court in Same-Sex Marriage Cases. Professor Manning, Director of the Center for Family & Demographic Research (CFDR) and Co-Director of the National Center for Family and Marriage Research (NCFMR) led an American Sociological Association (ASA) examination of social science evidence about children's well-being in same-sex and heterosexual parenting relationships. The ASA's review of the literature finds that children fare as well in both types of relationships and thus unsubstantiated fears about same-sex parenting do not justify upholding DOMA and Proposition 8. The ASA's amicus brief was filed February 28, 2013.
Research by Susan Brown and I-Fen Lin on rising gray divorce and singlehood among Baby Boomers continues to receive national media attention. The pair's findings were discussed on CBS This Morning and Brown was quoted in articles in the Chicago Tribune and USA Today, the week of February 25th, 2013. Their work was also featured in the New York Post, BusinessInsider, CBS MarketWatch, and Fox Business throughout February.
Drs. Heidi Lyons, Peggy Giordano, Wendy Manning and Monica Longmore Earn Hugo G. Biegel Award. Former graduate student, Heidi Lyons, and her BGSU colleagues, earned the 2011 Hugo G. Biegel Award for her paper "Identity, Peer Relationships, and Adolescent Girls' Sexual Behavior: An Exploration of the Contemporary Double Standard." Journal of Sex Research 48(5): 437-449. This award recognizes the outstanding paper of the year published in this journal. In both 1997 and 2009, Al DeMaris earned this prestigious award.
Jessica Cohen Wins BGSU's 2011-2012 Distinguished Dissertation Award! Former graduate student, Jessica Cohen, earned the BGSU 2011-2012 Distinguished Dissertation Award for her work, "Postmarital Union Formation and Childbearing." Jess is now an Assistant Professor at St. Mary's University in San Antonio, Texas. Her committee included Wendy Manning (Chair), Susan Brown, Al DeMaris, Diane Frey, and Kara Joyner. This marks the second year in a row the Sociology Department had Ph.D. students earn this distinguished achievement. Last year, Lauren Rinelli McClain earned this award with Susan Brown (Chair).
Susan Brown Earns Prestigious Olscamp Research Award. Today we heard that Susan Brown earned the Olscamp Research Award, an honor given to faculty who have demonstrated outstanding scholarly productivity in the past three years. We will report more about this honor, once Susan has formally received the award, during the presentation ceremony later this Spring.
Susan Brown and I-Fen Lin's Research on Unmarried Baby Boomers Garners Media Attention! Over the past weeks, Dr. Brown and Lin's research on the marriage and divorce patterns of aging Baby Boomers received widespread media coverage. Their work appeared in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Atlanta Constitution, to name a few newspapers. Dr. Brown was also interviewed on Talk of the Nation for National Public Radio and in a spot for The Today Show. The New York Times covered Dr. Lin and Brown's 2012 lead article in a special issue on Baby Boomers in The Gerontologist. They found that one-third of Boomers are unmarried and that unmarried boomers are more vulnerable in terms of poorer financial resources, social support, and health. The Wall Street Journal coverage referred to Dr. Brown and Lin's NCFMR working paper, The Grey Divorce Revolution, in which they demonstrate that the actual rate of divorce for those age 50 and older more than doubled since 1990. In 1990, less than 1 in 10 people aged 50 and over were divorced, but in 2009, 1 in 4 people aged 50 or older are divorced. Susan will soon present an update to their research at the Ohio State University Initiative on Population Research. Of course, earlier versions of these papers appeared at Population Association of America Annual Meetings!
CFDR hosts "Parental Well-Being in Contemporary Families" Conference. On Monday, March 26, 2012, the CFDR hosted a series on parental well-being. Maureen Perry-Jenkins (Psychology, University of Massachusetts Amherst) presented "New Parents' Mental Health in Socio-Cultural Context," Kristi Williams (Sociology, the Ohio State University) presented "Early and Nonmarital Childbearing, Union History, and Women's Health at Midlife," and Kevin Roy (Family Science, University of Maryland College Park) presented "Taking Care of My Own: Consequences of Fathering for Young Men on the Margins of Families and Work.
(In Photo 1, Left to Right: Maureen Perry-Jenkins, Annette Mahoney (Psychology, BGSU), President Mary Ellen Mazey, Kristi Williams, Kevin Roy, Kei Nomaguchi, Wendy Manning, Kara Joyner, and Karen Guzzo. In Photo 2, Left to Right: Kara Joyner, Rodney Rogers (Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost, BGSU), Wendy Manning, and Annette Mahoney)
CFDR hosts Dr. Sara McClelland talk on "Sexual Satisfaction in Young Adults: A Multi-Method Approach to Sexual Expectations and Outcomes." As part of the CFDR Speakers Series, on November 9th, 2011, Dr. Sara McClelland (Psychology and Women's Studies, University of Michigan) presented a powerful talk about the importance of theorizing and defining constructs when studying sexual satisfaction in young adults and the need for painstaking forms of construct validation. She presented her own research using anchored ladder, Q-Sort, survey, and semi-structured interview techniques.
Photo: Kara Joyner and Sara McClelland
CFDR hosts Dr. Xinyue Ye Talk on "Jurisdictional Boundaries and Crime Analysis: A Space-Time Perspective." As part of the CFDR Speakers Series, on October 19th, 2011, Dr. Xinyue Ye (BGSU School of Earth, Environment, and Society and Research Affiliate, China Data Center, University of Michigan) presented a wide-ranging talk about new theories and spatial methodologies for exploring the locational and time distribution of crime incidents and rates with attention to the relationships between populations, residential and use places, jurisdictional and geographic boundaries, and the dynamics of cooperation and conflict between wide varieties of law enforcement agencies.
Photo: Danielle Kuhl and Xinyue Ye
Susan Brown Presents at College of Arts & Sciences Distinguished Faculty Lecture Series. On October 18, 2011, Professor Susan Brown presented a distinguished lecture on "Partnering in Later Life: New Frontiers in Family Research," to honor her work on intimate partnering among older Americans. Today's older adults are less likely to be married than in previous generations, and Dr. Brown's research explores their creative new ways of exploring cohabiting and dating relationships.
From Top to Bottom: Photo 1, Susan Brown and Dean Simon Morgan-Russell. Photo 2, Gary Lee, Susan Brown, and I-Fen Lin (collaborators in aging and cohabitation research). Photo 3, Susan Brown and Wendy Manning (collaborators in research and co-directors of the National Center for Family and Marriage Research)
CFDR hosts Dr. Jeremy Staff Talk on "Status Transitions and Health-Risk Behaviors." As part of the CFDR Speakers Series, on October 12th, 2011, Dr. Jeremy Staff (Department of Sociology, the Pennsylvania State University) presented his multi-part project on family, school, and work transitions in young adulthood and health adaptive and maladaptive behaviors, using multiple cohorts from the Monitoring the Future data.
Left to Right: Drs. Steve Demuth, Matt VanEseltine, Jeremy Staff, Jorge Chavez, and Ray Swisher
Professor Ralph Wahrman Dies on September 30, 2011.
From his family
Beloved husband, father, grandfather, and brother Ralph Wahrman, of Bowling Green, OH, died on September 30, 2011 at Hospice of Northwest Ohio in Perrysburg, OH, surrounded by his family. He was 71. The cause was esophageal cancer. He is survived by his loving wife of 48 years, Judith (Stober); their three children, Francine of Hilliard, OH, Eric (Emily) of Bowling Green, and Anna, of New York City; a brother, Harvey (Stephanie) of East Windsor, NJ; and five grandchildren, Sarah, Jacob, Chance, Samuel and Kendall. He was preceded in death by his parents, Sam and Jessie (Goldstein) Wahrman.
Born in New York City on October 22, 1939, he graduated from elite Stuyvesant High School before earning his bachelor’s degree at Queens College. He completed his master’s degree and Ph.D. at Michigan State University and was a professor of Sociology at Bowling Green State University for 34 years before retiring in 2001.
Ralph was a gentle soul and a dear man who was devoted to his family and loved nothing more than spending time with them. Full of dry wit and wise words, he was an avid reader who loved listening to and collecting Big Band jazz music, cooking for his family, observing Jewish traditions and the culture at large, and reading his daily New York Times.
Funeral services and internment were held Monday, October 3, at Beth Shalom Cemetery, 424 Otter Creek Rd., Oregon, OH.
CFDR hosts Dr. Jennifer Bulanda Talk on "And They All Lived Happily Ever After? Marital Quality, Marital Dissolution, and Mortality Risk during the Later Life Course." As part of the CFDR Speakers Series, on September 21st, 2011, Dr. Bulanda (Dept. of Sociology and Gerontology, Miami University) presented her Health and Retirement Study (HRS) project, using 9 waves of data to explore the dynamics of marital quality and marital dissolution on mortality risks among older women and men in longterm marriages.
Drs. Jennifer Bulanda and Susan Brown
Lauren Rinelli McClain Earns BGSU Graduate College's 2010-2011 Distinguished Dissertation Award! Dr. Lauren McClain earned this year's competitive Distinguished Dissertation Award for her 2009 dissertation entitled "Father Involvement and Relationship Quality Among Cohabiting Parents." Her project used Fragile Families data to explore the correlates of father involvement among cohabiting couples with sophisticated techniques for measuring and assessing relationship quality. Her committee consisted of Drs. Susan Brown (Chair), and Al DeMaris, Kara Joyner, and Laura Sanchez. Since graduation, she has been working as an Assistant Professor at Savannah State University.
CFDR hosts Dr. Shawn Dorius Talk on "The Global Development of Egalitarian Beliefs." As part of the CFDR Speakers Series, on September 14, 2011, Dr. Dorius (Population Studies Center, University of Michigan) presented his World Values Survey research with a sample of 84 countries to demonstrate that gender attitudes about public rights in education, paid employment, and politics became more egalitarian across the world.
Left to Right: Gary R. Lee, Shawn Dorius, Kara Joyner, and Matt VanEseltine
National Research Council 2010 Report Ranks BGSU Sociology a Top Program. Bowling Green Sociology is a top-20 ranked program according to the National Research Council based on objective indicators of program quality. Our high overall ranking is due in part to the high rankings we received for research productivity and student support and outcomes.
Susan Brown and Wendy Manning win ASA Family Section's first Outstanding Article Award. Susan Brown and Wendy Manning were selected as the first winners of the new ASA Family Section Outstanding Article Award for their piece, "Family Boundary Ambiguity and the Measurement of Family Structure: The Significance of Cohabitation," Demography (2009) 46, 85-101. Congratulations!
Sociology colleagues celebrate Dr. Alan Booth. On Saturday, April 30, 2011, Susan Brown, Wendy Manning, and Gary Lee attended a celebration of Professor Alan Booth's illustrious and still exceedingly productive academic career at the Pennsylvania State University. As a former student of Dr. Booth's, Susan presented a talk entitled "Family Instability and Well-Being during Early Childhood." Our Gary Lee helped with the "roast," during the evening's closing festivities.
Sociology and CFDR colleagues earn 2011 PAA Poster Award. At this year's Population Association of America Annual Meetings in Washington, DC, graduate student, Tara D. Warner, and faculty, Raymond R. Swisher, Jorge M. Chavez, and Danielle C. Kuhl, earned a Poster Award for their outstanding paper, "Beyond a Variable-Centered Approach to Place: Identifying and Assessing Neighborhood Typologies." This award-winning poster and other PAA posters can be visited on the CFDR webpage: PAA Research!
Sociology, CFDR and NCFMR have banner 2011 PAA year. While our faculty always show strong dedication to the Population Association of America, this past year we had an outstanding presence at the Annual Meetings in Washington, DC. Several faculty worked with University of Michigan colleagues on the Program Committee to help organize sessions: Kelly Balistreri, Susan Brown, Kara Joyner, I-Fen Lin, Wendy Manning, Kei Nomaguchi, Laura Sanchez, and Ray Swisher. And 13 Sociology faculty were listed on this year's program as presenters, and 5 were additionally listed as Chairs or Discussants. Eight graduate students attended the meetings, and as noted above, we even had colleagues win a Poster Award. We were happy to say hello to old friends at our Alumni Table and proud that NCFMR hosted an informational research table at this year's meetings.
Left to Right across these two photos: Susan Brown, I-Fen Lin, Monica Longmore, and Wendy Manning
Left to Right: Professors Nancy Orel, Merrill Silverstein, Linda Waite, Susan Brown, I-Fen Lin, Kara Joyner, and Deborah Carr
CFDR and NCFMR Hosted Spring 2011 Symposium!
Baby Boomers and Family Changes in the 21st Century, Tuesday, March 15th, 2011, 8:30am-2:45pm, Room 201 BTSU
"Close Relationships at Older Ages", Linda Waite, Ph.D.
Lucy Flower Professor in Urban Sociology, Department of Sociology, The University of Chicago
"Gender Role Ideology Across Age, Time, and Generations: The Case for Baby-Boom Exceptionalism." Merrill Silverstein, Ph.D.
Professor of Gerontology and Sociology, Davis School of Gerontology and Department of Sociology, University of Southern California
"Reinventing Widowhood? Some (Untested) Predictions about Baby Boomers & Spousal Loss." Deborah Carr, Ph.D.
Professor of Sociology, Institute for Health, Health Care Policy & Aging Research, Rutgers University
Al DeMaris earns second Hugo Beigel Award for outstanding empirical article. In Fall 2010, Al DeMaris earned the Hugo Beigel Award for the most outstanding empirical paper published in the Journal of Sex Research. The Foundation for the Scientific Study of Sexuality funds the award which includes an honorarium and a guest invitation to attend the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality Annual Meetings where a Certificate of Research Excellence will be awarded at a luncheon. During his career, Al has submitted only twice to this high impact journal, but each time he published and won this Hugo Beigel Award! The following are his award-winning papers:
DeMaris, Alfred. (2009). “Distal and Proximal Influences on the Risk of Extramarital Sex: A Prospective Study of Longer-Duration Marriages.” Journal of Sex Research, 46, 597 – 607.
DeMaris, Alfred. (1997). "Elevated Sexual Activity in Violent Marriages: Hypersexuality or Sexual Extortion?" Journal of Sex Research 34: 361 – 373.
We are delighted to report that Karen Benjamin Guzzo, Kutztown University, and Matthew VanEseltine, the Pennsylvania State University, will join our Sociology faculty in Fall 2011. They will enhance our demography, family, criminology and methods strengths!
Gary Lee is honored by National Council on Family Relations (NCFR). Gary Lee was awarded the designation of 2010 NCFR Fellow. Fellow status in the NCFR is an honor awarded to relatively few living members of NCFR who have made outstanding and enduring contributions to the field of the family in the areas of scholarship, teaching, outreach or professional service.
Congratulations to Susan Brown. Susan Brown starts her term on the new editorial board of Demography.
BGSU Sociology Department Earns Sociologists for Women in Society Seal of Approval. During the past year, our Sociology program earned the SWS Seal of Approval for promoting gender equity in higher education. We are among the 33% of doctoral-granting programs in the United States which have at least 40% of women as faculty members.
David Maimon (The Ohio State University) and Danielle C. Kuhl (Bowling Green State University, pictured above) earned the ASA Mental Health Section’s best publication of the year award for the 2008 American Sociological Review article, “Social Control and Youth Suicidality: Situating Durkheim’s Ideas in a Multilevel Framework.”
Peggy C. Giordano, Ryan A. Schroeder and Stephen A. Cernkovich of Bowling Green State University won the James F. Short Jr. award for outstanding article for the past two years from the ASA Crime, Law and Deviance Section for their 2007 American Journal of Sociology article, “Emotions and Crime over the Life Course: A Neo-Meadian Perspective on Criminal Continuity and Change.”