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Sociology Professors Awarded NSF Grant


October 30, 2018

Diane M. Sicotte, PhD, associate professor in the Department of Sociology, (P.I.) and Kelly A. Joyce, PhD, professor in the Department of Sociology and Center for Science, Technology and Society (STS), (co-P.I.) were awarded $345,270 from NSF through the Science, Technology and Society program for a three-year project, titled “Societal Aspects of Energy Infrastructure Expansion.”

Through interviews and fieldwork, the research will examine the opinions of labor union leaders and members on efforts to develop and expand gas infrastructure, versus renewable energy sources. The technical and scientific expertise of unionized workers will be studied in order to understand how, and if, such expertise impacts technology design and use, or is used in political claims-making and policy formation. The project joins literature in Sociology and STS, tackles environmental justice issues by looking “upstream” at socio-technical systems in the making, and plans to contribute both to scholarly and public understandings of the energy (gas) infrastructure and environmental injustice.