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Daniel B. Cornfield

Professor of Sociology
Editor, Work and Occupations
Affiliated Faculty, American Studies and Political Science
Harvie Branscomb Distinguished Professor Award
Elected Member, Sociological Research Association
Fellow, Labor and Employment Relations Association

Workshop on Organizations, Work, and Labor

Dan Cornfield comments on the Great Resignation

What factors—social, political, economic, and cultural–influence and shape the formation of inclusive, diverse, democratic communities?

Over the last half-century, the transition from manufacturing toward a two-tier service economy has been accompanied by the individualization of risk and sharpening income inequality. These trends have diminished societal capacity for addressing the marginalization of social and cultural minorities, and for realizing inclusive, diverse, democratic communities.

I am presently engaged in two research projects.  The first is a book project on how pre- and post-movement biographical and occupational trajectories of 1960-era Nashville civil rights activists, trained in non-violence in movement workshops, contributed to the continued mobilization of the civil rights movement and the diffusion of movement messages of non-violence and social integration.  This is a collaborative project with Professors Larry Isaac and Dennis Dickerson and the Reverend James M. Lawson, Jr.

The second project—“Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Policies and Practices in Local Arts Agencies in the United States”—addresses organizational and contextual determinants of variations in DEI grantmaking policies and practices across more than 500 U.S. local arts agencies.  The project is conducted in collaboration with Americans for the Arts and the Vanderbilt University Curb Center for Art, Enterprise and Public Policy, with funding from the National Endowment for the Arts.