Suzanne Staggenborg, PhD

  • Professor

My areas of interest are social movements, political sociology, social problems and environmental sociology.  My research is primarily in the area of social movements, including studies of abortion politics, women’s movements, and environmental movements.  My book, Grassroots Environmentalism, was published in 2020 in Cambridge University Press’s series on contentious politics.  The book focuses on the strategic and organizational challenges facing local groups as they fight practices such as shale gas drilling and work to promote sustainable communities.  I teach courses on social movements, environmentalism, social problems, and qualitative methods.


Education & Training

  • PhD, Northwestern University, 1985
  • MA, Washington University, 1979
  • BA, Miami University, 1977

Representative Publications

Grassroots Environmentalism. Cambridge University Press, 2020.

Social Movements. Oxford University Press, Canadian ed., 2008; 2nd Canadian ed., 2012; 3rd Canadian ed., 2016;  American ed., 2011; 2nd American ed., 2016; 3rd American ed., 2022.

“Understanding Countermovements” (with David S. Meyer). 2022. Pp. 23-42 in Handbook of Anti-Environmentalism, edited by David Tindall, Mark C.J. Stoddart, and Riley E. Dunlap, Edward Elgar Publishing.

“Leadership and Structure in Coalitions: A Comparison of Two Local Alliances” (with Caitlin Schroering).  Social Movement Studies. Published online: 23 Aug 2021.

“Gender and Environmentalism” (with Chie Togami). 2022. Pp. 419-433 in Routledge Handbook of Environmental Movements, edited by Maria Grasso and Marco Guigni.

“Mobilizing Against Fracking: Marcellus Shale Protest in Pittsburgh.”  Pp. 107-127 in Fractured Communities: Risk, Impacts, and the Mobilization of Protest Against Hydraulic Fracking in U.S. Shale Regions, ed. by Anthony E. Ladd.  Rutgers University Press, 2018.

“Eventful Events: Local Outcomes of G20 Summit Protests in Pittsburgh and Toronto” (with Lesley J. Wood, Glenn J. Stalker and Rachel Kutz-Flamenbaum). Social Movement Studies 16(5): 595-609, 2017.

Research Interests

  • Social movements
  • Political sociology
  • Social problems
  • Environmental sociology
  • Qualitative Methods