Sociology of Organizations

Carol A. Caronna (ext. site) Ph.D.

Cohort 7 — Berkeley/UCSF
Professor, Department of Sociology, Anthropology, & Criminal Justice
Towson University, Towson, MD

Dr. Caronna received a PhD and an A.M. in sociology from Stanford University and a B.A. in sociology from the University of California, Irvine. She is the co-author of Institutional Theory and Healthcare Organizations: From Professional Dominance to Managed Care (2000, University of Chicago Press) and has published research articles in Journal of Health and Social Behavior, Social Science and Medicine, and Research in the Sociology of Organizations. She also has contributed chapters on acute care and the organization of medical care to the 8th, 9th, and 10th editions of the best-selling public health textbook, Jonas & Kovner's Health Care Delivery in the United States (Springer). She is also active in the scholarship of teaching and has published syllabi and course materials in four American Sociology Association teaching resource guides. These publications include her course designs for each of her upper level courses at Towson (Organizations and Society, Work and Occupations, and Sociology of Gender).

Discipline: Sociology

Kelly J. Devers (ext. site) Ph.D.

Cohort 1 — Berkeley/UCSF
Senior Fellow
NORC at the University of Chicago, Bethesda, MD

Dr. Devers received both her PhD and Master degree from Northwestern University. She was vice president of the Center for Evaluation and Advanced Analytics at The Lewin Group, a health care consulting firm, where she specialized in research and analysis related topics, such as bundled payments, accountable care organizations (ACOs) and patient-centered medical homes for vulnerable Medicare beneficiaries, and their impacts on access, quality, and cost.

In recent projects, Devers worked with the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) on a number of initiatives, including serving as the qualitative and mixed-methods task leader and senior adviser for the evaluation of the Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement Model. That project is testing a new model of hospital payment for hip and knee replacements to encourage care coordination from the initial hospitalization through recovery and ultimately reduce cost while maintaining quality. She also served as the qualitative and mixed-methods task lead for CMMI’s Comprehensive End-Stage Renal Disease Care Model, designed to test the concept of ACOs designed specifically for people with end-stage renal disease. Previously, she served in leadership roles on CMMI’s Multi-Payer Advanced Primary Care Practice Demonstration Evaluation, as well as for several other major projects funded by the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology.

Earlier in her career, she held a position at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and was awarded the Secretary’s Award for Distinguished Service. She was an associate professor at Virginia Commonwealth University, a senior researcher at the Center for Studying Health Systems Change, and a senior fellow at the Urban Institute.

Devers’ work has been widely published in major health services research and policy journals, with close to 50 peer-reviewed journal articles, an edited book, and numerous widely read issue briefs and reports. She also serves as a peer reviewer for federal agencies, foundations, and journal editorial Boards and is a frequent speaker on health policy issues.

Discipline: Sociology

Daniel P. Dohan (ext. site) Ph.D.

Cohort 4 — Berkeley/UCSF
Professor of Health Policy and Social Medicine, Deputy Director, Phillip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies
Co-Director UCSF/UC Hastings Consortium on Law, Science and Health Policy
University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA

Dr. Dohan received his PhD in Sociology from University of California-Berkeley. He is also Co-Director, UCSF/UC Hasting Consortium on Law, Science, and Health Policy. His research examines the culture of medicine. Dr. Dohan received his PhD in Sociology from University of California-Berkeley.

Dr. Dohan's research focuses broadly on the culture of medicine. He leads a project to develop innovative methods to integrate qualitative and narrative data into clinical decision-making and patient-centered outcomes research. In collaboration with the campus’ precision medicine initiative, he is developing stakeholder-engaged approaches for educating patients about precision medicine and to support their involvement in precision medicine research. Finally, he is collaborating with the UCSF Center for Surgery in Older Adults on ways to better align surgical treatment decision-making with frail elders’ overall goals of care.

Discipline: Sociology

Nicole Esparza (ext. site) Ph.D.

Cohort 14 — Harvard
Associate Professor of Public Affairs, Sol Price School of Public Policy
University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA

Dr. Esparza received her Ph.D. in sociology from Princeton University in 2007. Her research interests include organizational dynamics, urban inequality, and economic sociology.  Dr. Esparza's dissertation used a multi-method approach to examine nonprofit organizations in twenty-six U.S. metropolitan areas.  This research explored how inter-organizational dynamics and social and political context affect the distribution of homeless services.  As a Scholar, she studied hospital patient “dumping,” a practice in which hospitals avoid high-cost patients by refusing to admit, transferring, and/or releasing patients in unstable conditions.

Discipline: Sociology

Brian A. Gifford (ext. site) Ph.D.

Cohort 10 — Berkeley/UCSF
Director, Research and Analytics
Integrated Benefits Institute, San Francisco, CA

Dr. Gifford received his PhD in Sociology from New York University and his Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology from University of California - Berkeley. He researches workforce health, performance, absence, and disability leaves for the Integrated Benefits Institute (IBI), a 501(c)(6) non-profit organization. He has been a lead or contributing author on peer-reviewed and Institute-published studies on topics such as employees’ decisions about working during spells of illness, disability leave costs for acute coronary syndromes and venous thromboembolism, health risks and sick day absences, how CFOs use information to make decisions about their organizations’ healthcare and wellness benefits, and the links between FMLA and paid disability leaves. His prior appointment was as a social scientist with the RAND Corporation.

Discipline: Sociology

Alexandra Kalev (ext. site) Ph.D.

Cohort 12 — Berkeley/UCSF
Associate Professor, Department of Sociology and Anthropology
Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel

Dr. Kalev received her PhD from Princeton University in 2005. Her research projects examine gender, racial and ethnic diversity in an age of workplace restructuring and increased legalization.  With Frank Dobbin, she is developing an evidence-based approach to diversity management spanning corporations and universities and examining the effects of diversity on firms’ financial performance. In other projects, Kalev examines the effects of industrial and organizational restructuring on the integration of Israeli-Palestinians in Israel (with Noah Lewin-Epstein and Erez Marantz), and how age, gender and networks affect merit evaluations and pay across national contexts (with Uri Shwed).

Kalev’s research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the Sloan Foundation, the Israeli Science Foundation, the Bi-National Science Foundation and the Israeli Ministry of Science.
Her work has been published in the American Sociological Review, the American Journal of Sociology, Administrative Science Quarterly and Law and Social Inquiry, among others. She was the 2010 recipient of the Richard W. Scott outstanding contribution to scholarship award from the Organizations, Occupations and Work section of the American Sociological Association. Kalev is a member of the Advisory Committee to the Israeli Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Discipline: Sociology

Michael Sauder (ext. site) Ph.D.

Cohort 17 — Harvard
Professor, Department of Sociology
University of Iowa , Iowa City, IA

Dr. Sauder holds a PhD is sociology from Northwestern University. His research interests include quantification, organizational evaluation, and status. He is currently completing a project that explores the effects of public rankings on higher education. Ongoing research includes a study of how children’s hospitals use rankings, awards, and certifications to establish organizational identity and an investigation of how physician groups respond to patient experience surveys.


Discipline: Sociology

Mark C. Suchman (ext. site) Ph.D.

Cohort 6 —
Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology
Brown University, Providence, RI

Dr. Suchman received his PhD from Stanford University and his JD from Yale University. His interests are Sociology of Organizations; Sociology of Law; Economic Sociology; Innovation and Entrepreneurship; Professions; Healthcare. He is currently writing a book on the role of law firms in Silicon Valley, and he is midway through a multi-year project on the organizational, professional, and legal challenges surrounding new information technologies in health care. He has also written on organizational legitimacy, on inter-organizational disputing practices, on the "internalization" of law within corporate bureaucracies, and on social science approaches to the study of contracts.

Discipline: Sociology

Edward T. Walker (ext. site) Ph.D.

Cohort 16 — Michigan
Associate Professor and Vice Chair, Department of Sociology
Director of Undergraduate Education
University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA

Dr. Walker received a PhD in sociology from Pennsylvania State University in 2007. Formerly on the faculty of the University of Vermont, he joined the Department of Sociology at UCLA following his time as an RWJF Scholar. Dr. Walker’s scholarly interests include civil society, political participation, organizations, social movements, and the non-profit sector. His work appears in such venues as the American Sociological Review, American Journal of Sociology, Social Problems, andPublic Opinion Quarterly. His current projects include a longitudinal study of community organizations across the U.S., research on how business contexts shape protest, and an NSF-supported examination of the influence of professional public affairs campaigns on political participation and policy.  His book on the latter topic, Grassroots for Hire, is under contract with Cambridge University Press. As an RWJF Scholar, he examined the role of inter-organizational networks in shaping the philanthropic activity of pharmaceutical companies, health insurers, device manufacturers, providers, medical sales companies, and medical research firms.

Discipline: Sociology