Eric Allen Hanley

Associate Professor
Primary office:
Fraser Hall, RM 712


Areas of Specialization:

Political & Economic Sociology, Globalization, Social Stratification, Sociology of Organizations

Teaching Interests

  • Environmental Sociology
  • Political Sociology
  • Globalization
  • Comparative-Historical
  • Social Stratification

Research Interests

  • Environmental Sociology
  • Political Sociology
  • Globalization

Eric Hanley (PhD UCLA) specializes in economic, environmental and political sociology.  His recent research focuses on political behavior in United States, specifically the rise of white nationalism.  Other projects also include analyses of the anti-mining movement in Peru and the political and economic processes contributing to land degradation in western China.  Recent publications include “State Corporatism and Environmental Harm: Tax Farming and Desertification in Northwestern China” (with KuoRay Mao, 2018, Journal of Agrarian Change) and “The Anger Games:  Who Voted for Donald Trump in the 2016 Election, and Why?” (with David Smith, Critical Sociology, 2018). Areas: Political, Environmental, and Economic Sociology, Globalization.


Has globalization enhanced the capacity of environmental movements (local, national, transnational) to limit environmental degradation worldwide?

Population growth, economic development, and rising standards of living remain major sources of environmental degradation in developed and developing countries alike.  One by-product of global economic development, however, has been the creation of systems of communication which, in turn, have opened up possibilities for transnational collective action. One of the themes of my work is an examination of the new kinds of resources which globalization has made available to individuals and groups to mount collective challenges. These resources include transnational advocacy networks, international institutions, and international norms which, taken together, have provided local and national environmental movements with new opportunities to have their voices heard.  But external sources of support and networking may have negative implications as well. By involving more moderate elements, for example, transnational advocacy networks may weaken the ability of more radical environmental activists to mobilize their bases of support at the local level. By examining the linkages between local environmental movements on the one hand and transnational advocacy networks and international institutions on the other, we can determine the extent to which globalization increases environmental movements’ power.

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