Call for Contributions: The Publicizer

Our newsletter The Publicizer is always looking for content–contact editor Dennis Watson to contribute to upcoming issues. Possible topics:

  • Short articles on your research, work, graduate programs
  • Essays on public sociology
  • Book publication announcements
  • Member news: promotions, moves, grants, new projects, awards
  • Conference highlights essays with photos
  • Short bios of award winners, and pictures
  • Useful weblinks
  • Conference Announcements
  • Calls for papers
  • Calls for nominations
  • Short job opening announcements

Partnership between AREC and Public Library

The Applied Research and Education Center (AREC) at Indiana University Southeast helped a local public Library win the American Library Association’s Carroll Preston Baber Research Grant. AREC will conduct the survey research that will help the library better understand why portions of their community do not use the library’s many resources. The Jeffersonville Township Public Library of southern Indiana will use the data to improve their communications and programming strategies. The American Library Association sees potential for this project to be useful to libraries nationwide. http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/news/ala/pollard-and-fry-winners-2012-carroll-preston-baber-research-grant

The AREC operates under the direction of Dr. Melissa Fry and employs 5 undergraduate students from across campus to provide research support to local nonprofit organizations and government agencies and to analyze trends in our area that may be important to organizations providing community services in the region.

Member Presentation Announcement

Harry Perlstadt, Dept of Sociology, Michigan State University gave a powerpoint presentation entitled “A Sociological Perspective on Human Research Protections: The Enforcement of Social Mores” at Quest for Research Excellence, Office of Research Integrity Conference on Research Integrity, Washington DC — March 16, 2012.

New Articles on Meth Markets

Section member Henry Brownstien and colleagues have recently released research on illicit drug markets in Criminal Justice Policy Review and Contexts. See below for citations and abstracts.

Brownstein, H.H., T.M. Mulch, B.G. Taylor, J. Fernandes-Huessy, & D. Woods. 2012. “The Organization and Operation of Illicit Retail Methamphetamine Markets.” Criminal Justice Policy Review 23:67-89.

Research has shown that illicit retail drug markets for different drugs vary in organization and operation. In this paper we examine illicit retail markets for a single drug, methamphetamine, and identify the variation among meth markets in different cities and counties in the United States. We present findings from a survey of police respondents from 1,367 law enforcement agencies, including a cluster analysis to distinguish types of markets. We compare measures of the structure, relationship, and dynamics of local markets in the context of the types of markets relative to the source of the meth, the severity of the local problem, and the relative maturity of the local market. We conclude that the organization and operation of meth markets in areas that are primarily supplied by local production are different from local markets supplied primarily by imported meth. We end with a discussion of policy implications and future research. This article is based on research that was funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) for a study of the Dynamics of Methamphetamine Markets (R21D024391).

Brownstein, H.H., T.M. Mulcahy, B.G. Taylor, J. Fernandes-Huessy, & C. Hafford. 2012. “Home Cooking: Marketing Meth.” Contexts 11:30-35.

Compared to other illicit drug markets, methamphetamine markets are distinctive in the extent to which relationships among participants are personal. This paper is based on a mixed methods study of meth markets across America starting with a survey of 1,367 police agencies followed by in-depth telephone interviews with narcotics detectives in 50 different communities and then visits to 28 towns and cities in five regions of the country to observe and interview public health and safety officials, local drug treatment providers, prevention specialists, social service workers, family service providers, meth users and dealers, and other people whose lives are impacted by meth. We observed variation in the organization and operation of local markets, but always found that dealings in meth markets are personal. To understand meth markets you need to understand the people who participate in them. This article is based on research that was funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) for a study of the Dynamics of Methamphetamine Markets (R21D024391).

New Book: Distributive Justice and Fair Exchange

Distributive Justice and Fair Exchange: How to find and use social standards
ISBN 978-089-370251-1

Section member Emanuel Smikun, PhD, is the founder of American Social Indicators (www.socialindicators.org) that supports a database of indicators of distributive social justice for status groups and their class interests. His new book has just been released, blurb below:

Movements for social justice are sweeping the world. But what do we mean by social justice now that the welfare state has outlived its time? A re-reading of sociological classics suggests that distributive justice and fair exchange should be evaluated by standards of consistency between social status and class structures. Guided by these standards, the author develops an integrated method for measuring deviations from social justice in unequal status groups of American family, cultural, economic, and political institutions. Estimates of developmental social sustainability are obtained from an analysis of unfair exchanges of status groups’ shared class interests, such as occupational, management, and others. Solutions are suggested for achieving higher levels of social justice with special attention to productive participation in non-profit organizations as a countervailing power to big corporations and a constructive direction for protest movements. This book is a must read for anyone interested in understanding how the foundations of our social world are shaped and reshaped.

The book is a companion book to the website on social indicators www.socialindicators.org that can serve as its theory and methodology resource even as it stands on its own.

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