I received my Ph.D. in Sociology from Columbia University, and have taught at Harvard, the University of Pennsylvania, Princeton, and Notre Dame (my current institution). Most easily classified as a scholar of social interaction, I have done, or am doing, research on corporate meetings, Pentagon press conferences, Supreme Court oral arguments, experimental task groups, National Security Council meetings, criminal juries, deliberative democracy forums, and (in a roundabout sort of way)
newspaper editorial meetings, as well as waiting lines, network diffusion, the Bernie Madoff Ponzi scheme, the role of game analogies in social theory, and the logic of the clue-based method (which Carlo Ginzburg just barely scratched). In general, I write about one article per topic, so as to avoid economies of scale.

(Click here for a complete biography suitable for reading on ceremonial occasions.)


1999: Ph.D. (Sociology, with Distinction), Columbia University

1995: M.Phil. (Sociology) Columbia University

1994: M.A. (Sociology) Columbia University

1991: B.A., Eastern College (magna cum laude)


2013-present: Associate Professor, University of Notre Dame.

2012-13: Lecturer, Princeton University, Department of Sociology.

2005-2012: Assistant Professor, University of Pennsylvania, Department of Sociology.

2001-2005: Assistant Professor, Harvard University, Department of Sociology.

1999-2001: Post-doctoral Fellow, Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy, Columbia University.

Areas of research

Social interaction, language, deliberation, decision making, social networks, theory, secrecy & deception.

Sociology Department, Notre Dame University, 736 Flanner Hall, Notre Dame, IN 46556

***Current CV***


Who I am not
Where I am not

Work in progress

A study of criminal jury deliberations (with Matthew Fox); a study of deliberative democracy forums (with Ann Mische); a study of the interplay of organization, networks, and dramaturgy in Bernard Madoff's Ponzi scheme.


My Notre Dame page

Notre Dame Sociology

Supplemental article materials

Courses (most recent syllabi)

Introduction to Sociological Research (undergraduate--Penn)

Contemporary Sociological Theory (undergraduate--Penn)

Contemporary Sociological Theory (graduate--Penn)

Doing Sociology (undergraduate--Notre Dame)

Social Interaction (graduate--Princeton)

Models of Social Dynamics (graduate--Harvard)

The Social Organization of Secrecy and Deception (undergraduate--Notre Dame)

Identities, Attitudes, and Social Interaction (undergraduate--Princeton)

Media appearances

"Popular Mechanics," New York Times Fashion & Style Magazine