Skip to main content Skip to navigation
Department of Sociology Dahlem, Jonathan

M.A. Sociology, Washington State University, 2016
M.A. English Literature, Wright State University, 2013
B.A. English, Ohio State University, 2011


Environmental Sociology, Conservation Sociology, Environmental Justice, Sociology of Knowledge/Science, Political Sociology, Animals & Society, Gender & Environment, Social Movements

Research Interests

I research the underlying causes of sociopolitical inertia toward solving urgent environmental problems, especially biodiversity loss and climate change. In particular, my doctoral dissertation work has been the development and implementation of a “Conservation Sociology” that can attend to the social components of species extinction and conservation with rigorous sociological methodology and the application of existing sociological theory. In doing so, I explore major sociological factors such as social power, meaning-making, knowledge, conceptions of social time, and more in the specific case of the Island Marble Butterfly, an urgently threatened species native to northwest Washington state. My work is motivated by a belief that socio-political obstacles to environmental goals such as species conservation must be approached with the same empiricism with which scientists approach their biophysical components. To this end, I have also developed projects that investigate the sociological components of sea-level rise, climate change skepticism, and national-level predictors of biodiversity loss. In these and other projects, I specialize in qualitative sociological research methods, especially interviews, ethnography, participant observation, and content analysis. I am also proficient in quantitative sociological research methods, especially survey design, statistical analyses, and social networks analysis methods.

Beyond research, I am also avidly engaged in developing interdisciplinary bridges from Environmental Sociology to the natural sciences (particularly Conservation Biology), developing applied sociological strategies to issues such as species conservation, and developing strategies for effective local community outreach. Furthermore, I have dedicated much of my time as a doctoral candidate to teaching and to developing undergraduate coursework both in-person and online.

I am currently seeking employment, with a PhD anticipated to be awarded in Spring 2020. Please find an up-to-date CV on this webpage, and please feel free to e-mail me for manuscript requests or any other correspondence