Cornell’s Department of Sociology explores human social organization, institutions and groups. The department is known for the cutting-edge research of its faculty and for its exceptionally strong graduate and undergraduate training programs. It has a long-standing tradition of engaging and valuing theoretically driven empirical research. This approach to sociology uses sophisticated theoretical reasoning and rigorous methodological tools, many of which are developed by Cornell faculty, to answer fundamental questions about the social world, how it is organized and how it is changing. The department’s focus on basic science is complemented by a deep commitment to informing public and educational policy, particularly on issues related to gender and racial inequality, income inequality, poverty, drug use, economic development, school funding, organizational practices and race and ethnicity.
The sociology department also has close ties with the many other research centers on campus. Interdisciplinary research touches on subjects such as inequality, economics, social sciences, nonlinear systems, politics and social dynamics.