Jackie Smith, PhD

  • Professor


Jackie Smith’s research focuses on the how globalization impacts people and communities, and how social movements for the environment, health, and economic justice have advanced transformative struggles. She has documented long-term trends in transnational social movement organizations and coalitions, in addition to research on connections between global politics and activism in cities and communities. Smith is currently engaged in participatory research with Pittsburgh and with national human rights organizers and engaged in work to connect municipalities with United Nations human rights work.

Education & Training

  • BA, The Catholic University of American, 1990
  • PhD, University of Notre Dame, 1996

Representative Publications


Making Other Worlds Possible: The Battle in Seattle in World-Historical Context Jackie Smith (2020) "Making Other Worlds Possible: The Battle in Seattle in World-Historical Context," Socialism and Democracy,10.1080/08854300.2019.1676030. 

“Responding to Globalization and Urban Conflict: Human Rights City Initiatives” Jackie Smith (2017) Studies in Social Justice 11(2):347-368.

Jackie Smith, Basak Gemici, Samantha Plummer and Melanie Hughes. 2018. “Transnational Social Movement Organizations and Counter-Hegemonic Struggles Today” Journal of World-Systems Research 24(2):372-403.

Smith, Jackie, Samantha Plummer, and Melanie Hughes. “Transnational Contention and Changing Organizational Fields in the Late-20th and Early-21st Centuries.” Global Networks 17(1) 3-22. DOI: 10.1111/glob.12152

“Counter-hegemonic Networks and the Transformation of Global Climate Politics: Rethinking Movement-State Relations” Global Discourse: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Current Affairs and Applied Contemporary Thought (January): 1-19.


Social Movements and World-System Transformation (co-edited with Michael Goodhart, Patrick Manning, and John Markoff)

Social Movements in the World-System: The Politics of Crisis and Transformation (with Dawn Wiest)

Social Movements, Globalization, and Peacebuilding (Co-edited with Ernesto Verdeja)

Social Movements for Global Democracy

Public Sociology: 

UN to US Government: Do Better on Housing Shelterforce June 3, 2019, Jackie Smith and Emily Cummins

"Bringing Human Rights Home: New Strategies for Local Organizing" By: Jackie Smith & Joshua Cooper, Open Global Rights, August 2019.

Human Rights, Not Corporate Rights, by Jackie Smith. Forum contribution: Corporations in the Crosshairs: From Reform to Redesign Great Transitions Initiative.

Global Peasant Declaration Represents Huge Advance for Human Rights by Jackie Smith, Caitlin Schroering December 2018, Commondreams.org

“Sociology’s Nero Syndrome?” Mobilizing Ideas  

Research Interests

  • Social conflict and transformation
  • Environment & climate change politics
  • Urban politics
  • Global and local human rights movements
  • Global politics of public health
  • Media and politics
  • International migration
  • International law and institutions
  • Eco-feminism
  • Social movements
  • World-systems analysis
  • Global and transnational sociology
  • Urban sociology
  • Race and social conflict
  • Public sociology
  • Environmental sociology
  • Global health