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Ethan Schoolman

Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Erb Institute for Global Sustainable Enterprise, University of Michigan

  • Affiliation(s)
    • Graduate Fellow, Graham Environmental Sustainability Institute (UM)
    • Graduate Associate, Erb Institute for Global Sustainable Enterprise (UM)
  • Fields of Study
    • Culture and Knowledge
    • Power, History, and Social Change
  • About

    Ethan Schoolman is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Erb Institute with a dual appointment as a Dow Sustainability Fellow in the School of Natural Resources and Environment. As an interdisciplinary scholar with a doctoral degree in sociology, Ethan's research focuses on the political economy and environmental and social impacts of food systems, determinants of sustainable behavior, and consumer culture. At Erb, Ethan is investigating whether strong local food systems contribute to environmental and social sustainability, while also coordinating qualitative research for the USDA-funded Food Access in Michigan Project. His doctoral work developed new theory on the subjective experience of "socially responsible purchasing" and on why "buying local" may have surprisingly broad support across socioeconomic and political lines. Ethan has also written on environmental inequality in developing countries, impediments to interdisciplinarity in sustainability science, the political history of climate change, and challenges in environmental education. Prior to his doctoral work, Ethan worked as a fundraiser for non-profit groups, a reporter, a housekeeper in backcountry Alaska, and an ecological field assistant. He also holds a master's degree in political science from Princeton and a bachelor's degree from the University of Chicago.

  • Education
    • M.A. Princeton University
    • B.A. University of Chicago
  • Research Areas of Interest
    • Environmental Sociology
    • Political Sociology
    • Cultural Sociology
    • Consumers and Consumption
    • Social Theory
  • Dissertation Title
    • How Personal is the Political? Understanding Socially Responsible Consumption
  • Dissertation Committee
    • Howard Kimeldorf, Mark Mizruchi, Sandra Levitsky, Genevieve Zubrzycki