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Monthly Archives: March 2014


Prof. Martin’s book receives 2014 Distinguished Scholarship Award

Professor Isaac Martin’s book, Rich People’s Movements: Grassroots Campaigns to Untax the One Percent just received the 2014 Distinguished Scholarship Award from the Pacific Sociological Association. Bravo Isaac!

Cover for<br />
Rich Peoples Movements<br />




Social Sciences Supper Club with Prof. David FitzGerald

The Social Sciences Supper Club is one of the university’s most popular dinner lecture series featuring expert faculty who focus on some of the most important social issues of our time. Supper Club events explore topics ranging from the future of regional economic growth to the workings of the human mind and behavior.

Please join us for our next Supper Club:

“What’s Next for U.S. Immigration Reform and Border Enforcement?”

Featuring David FitzGerald, the Theodore E. Gildred Chair in U.S.-Mexican Relations, associate professor of Sociology and co-director of the Center for Comparative Immigration Studies at UC Tuesday, April 8, 2014
5:30 to 8 p.m.
UC San Diego Faculty Club (Map)

The cost is $65 per person or $50 for UC San Diego alumni and includes a wine reception, dinner and parking at the Faculty Club.

Online registration is available.

For more information or questions, please contact Maryann Lapthorn at (858) 822-6694 or mlapthorn@ucsd.edu.

New book by Prof. Rona-Tas- Plastic Money: Constructing Markets for Credit Cards in Eight Postcommunist Countries

Plastic Money: Constructing Markets for Credit Cards in Eight Postcommunist Countries by Alya Guseva and Akos Rona-Tas

In the United States, we now take our ability to pay with plastic for granted. In other parts of the world, however, the establishment of a “credit-card economy” has not been easy. In countries without a history of economic stability, how can banks decide who should be given a credit card? How do markets convince people to use cards, make their transactions visible to authorities, assume the potential risk of fraud, and pay to use their own money? Why should merchants agree to pay extra if customers use cards instead of cash?

In Plastic Money, Akos Rona-Tas and Alya Guseva tell the story of how banks overcame these and other quandaries as they constructed markets for credit cards in eight postcommunist countries. We know how markets work once they are built, but this book develops a unique framework for understanding how markets are engineered from the ground up—by selecting key players, ensuring cooperation, and providing conditions for the valuation of a product. Drawing on extensive interviews and fieldwork, the authors chronicle how banks overcame these hurdles and generated a desire for their new product in the midst of a transition from communism to capitalism.

cover for Plastic Money

Jeff Tirshfield accepted into Rhodes Academy of Ocean Law and Policy

Jeff Tirshfield has just been accepted into a highly competitive program at the Rhodes Academy of Ocean Law and Policy in Rhodes, Greece, June-July 2014. His dissertation explores juridico-political issues to do with the regulation of contemporary maritime piracy.  Congrats Jeff!

Laura Pecenco co-curates art exhibit and speaks at SDSU

Laura Pecenco works at the nexus of the sociology of gender, visual sociology, and art.  She is co-curating an art exhibition at SDSU. The Prison Art Project: What does prisoner-made art look like — its themes, imagery, and materials? Laura Pecenco is a Ph.D. Candidate in Sociology at the University of California, San Diego. Her dissertation research involves analyzing prisoner-made art. Pecenco and Goeltzenleuchter worked with SDSU students to curate an exhibition of prisoner-made art. A central goal of this exhibition is to generate awareness of the pervasive myths of prison life — much of which has been perpetuated through popular entertainment — and offer another, more complex model of what it means to live behind bars.

Laura Pecenco will speak at a panel discussion on Thursday, March 20, 2014, from 2-4 pm in Room LL108 of the SDSU Library.   Another panelist is noted photographer Stephen Chalmers are panelists.  Moderated by Art / Crime Archive co-directors Dr. Paul Kaplan (criminologist) and Brian Goeltzenleuchter (artist). For questions, please contact bgoeltzenleuchter@mail.sdsu.edu<mailto:bgoeltzenleuchter@mail.sdsu.edu>.
@artcrimearchive     #ACApanel     ArtCrimeArchive.org

Laura Pecenco’s dissertation, “Paint in the Can: Creating Art and Gender in Prison,” is a multi-method analysis of the diverse ways in which gender is performed by men in prison art programs.

Recent Grad Leah Muse-Orlinoff

Congratulations to the latest Ph.D.- Dr. Leah Muse-Orlinoff! She successfully completed her dissertation titled, “Pioneer Entrepreneurs: Legal Capital and Social Network Changes in a First Generation Mexican Community.”

Leah will be joining the San Diego office of Harder+Company Community Research  as the resident social science research associate.

Ian Mullins receives OSD Teaching Award

Our grad student Ian Mullins has received an award of recognition acknowledging his service in providing accommodations to students with disabilities at UC San Diego.  Ian was nominated for this award by students, and he has been commended by the Office for Students with Disabilities for his continued hard work and dedication in meeting the needs of all students with disabilities.  Bravo Ian!