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2017 Visiting Scholar

Gabe Ignatow (PhD Stanford), Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies, Department of Sociology, University of North Texas

Professor Ignatow joined us this spring quarter as both the department’s Visiting Scholar and the Keynote Speaker at the 44th Undergraduate Research Conference. Other highlights from Dr. Ignatow's visit included speaking at the AKD Initiation and Senior Dinner, taking part in a panel on graduate schools, guest lecturing, and meeting with our faculty and students. 

Dr. Ignatow is Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of Sociology at the University of North Texas. After receiving his PhD in sociology from Stanford, Ignatow served on the faculty Bar-Ilan University in Israel and Koç University in Istanbul, Turkey. He was also selected as a faculty fellow at the Center for Cultural Sociology at Yale University. Professor Ignatow has published books and articles on a wide range of topics including environmentalism, libraries in developing countries, religious movements, the sociology of morality, the sociology of the body, and philosophical aspects of social research methods. He has published three books and edited a fourth: An Introduction to Text Mining and Text Mining: A Guidebook for the Social Sciences both with Rada Mihalcea (Sage), Transnational Identity Politics and the Environment (Lexington/Rowman & Littlefield), and The Oxford Handbook of Cognitive Sociology, co-edited with Wayne Brekhus (Oxford). His many peer-reviewed articles have appeared in journals including Social Forces and Poetics. In addition to his research, Professor Ignatow is committed to student mentorship: he currently serves as his department's Director of Graduate Studies and co-founded GradTrek, a graduate school search engine company.

Prof. Ignatow’s keynote address at the Undergraduate Research Conference, entitled “Digital Social Science: Entering a New Era of Challenges and Opportunities,” built on his work in sociology of digital media. He examined the emergent field of study increasingly being called “digital sociology.” Discussion topics included cloud computing, social media, and data mining, he identified major societal and technological trends relevant to social sciences including anthropology and sociology. Professor Ignatow also probed how sociologists, anthropologists, and other social scientists can transition and flourish in a new arena of social sciences informed by new technologies. Some related topics included: 1) transforming existing research methods and build new methodological tools, 2) increasing awareness of ethical challenges unique to the digital age, and 3) understanding social problems being engendered by new technologies. Professor Ignatow’s talk closed with a discussion of particular relevance to undergraduate social scientists attending the Undergraduate Research Conference: new opportunities for sociologists and anthropologists to engage in high tech fields, work with technologists, and to study technology critically using their social scientific imaginations.