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Barbara J. Risman Ph.D.


Barbara J. Risman, Ph.D. is College of Arts & Sciences Distinguished Professor of Sociology at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She just returned from a semester abroad where she was a Fellow at the Institute of Advanced Study at Durham University, United Kingdom., a Visiting Professor at the University of Valencia, Trento University in Italy, and the VU University in Amsterdam. She was formerly a Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University. She has published widely for decades about gender and families in academic journals. The second edition of her edited textbook, Families As They Really Are (co-edited with Virginia Rutter) is used in classrooms across America. Her new book Where The Millennials Will Take Us: A New Generation Wrestles with the Gender Structure was published in 2018, as was the Handbook on the Sociology of Gender (co-edited with Carissa Froyum Roisse and William Scarborough). Risman is a public intellectual whose editorials have appeared widely including in the Chicago Tribune, the Raleigh News & Observer, the Seattle Times, and She is quoted frequently in the the popular press, including the Economist, the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, and the Atlantic. Her awards include the 2011 American Sociological Association’s Award for the Public Understanding of Sociology and the 2005 Katherine Jocher Belle Boone Award from the Southern Sociological Society for lifetime contributions to the study of gender. Risman is currently President of the Board of Directors of The Council on Contemporary Families, a national non-profit whose mission is to bring new research to public conversation. In 2016, she was President of the Southern Sociological Society and Vice-President of the American Sociological Association.

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