Vol. 12, No. 2, May 2011


Job Posting

Postdoctoral Fellow: Sociology of Food: Understanding Consumer Motivation in the Alternative Food Sector

BACKGROUND: Alternative food options, such as organic food stores, farmer’s markets and community supported agriculture, are an expanding way for people to obtain their groceries and express their politics. This research project will untangle the web of motivations that guide consumers in the alternative food sector, and further understanding of why consumers look for alternatives to mainstream grocery shopping. An Ontario Government Early Researcher Award (ERA), received by Dr. Josée Johnston in 2009, funds this fellowship.

JOB SUMMARY: Primary responsibility will be to collect data (qualitative and quantitative) on alternative food consumers in Ontario as part of the ERA research program. The Fellow will work closely with Dr. Johnston, and will be expected to make intellectual contributions towards co-authorship of papers.

QUALIFICATIONS: Eligible candidates must have received their PhD in the past three years. Candidates with sociology PhDs are especially encouraged to apply, but applicants will be accepted from across related disciplinary fields. An interest in social scientific food scholarship is essential. The candidate should have a strong track record of publication in academic social science journals. Methodological experience with survey design and data collection is an asset, as is a demonstrated ability to collaborate in research and writing.

The full-time position is for 2 years, starting September 1st, 2011 with an annual stipend of $40,000 and a $6,000 travel fund. Applicants should submit a curriculum vitae and a letter outlining their research interests and accomplishments no later than May 15th, 2011 to:

Josée Johnston, Department of Sociology
University of Toronto
Toronto, ON CANADA
M6G 2T9  Josee.johnston@utoronto.ca

Books of Note

Anne M. Cronin (2010)  Advertising, Commercial Spaces and the Urban. Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan.
Drawing upon the works of Lefevbre and Bergson, the author presents an argument about how cities and advertising have become intertwined whereby city spaces becomes configured through advertising and cities themselves make exploit adverting culturally and financially.

Daloz, Jean-Pascal. (2011) The Sociology of Elite Distinction: From Theoretical to Comparative Perspectives,  Palgrave Macmillan: Basingstoke.
A comprehensive look at the key theories and theorists of taste beyond Veblen and Bourdieu, putting these in conversation with each other over time and thematically.

Sternheimer, Karen. (2011). Celebrity Culture and the American Dream: Stardom and Social Mobility. Routledge.
An examination of fan magazines from 1911-2010, this book analyses how both celebrity stories and advertisements promote an ever-shifting version of the American Dream.

Sulkunen, Pekka (2009) The Saturated Society. Governing Risk and Lifestyles in Consumer Culture. London: Sage.
The author argues that the key principles that guide modern society—the nation-state, material-technological progress as common good and individualism as normative ideal—have become ambiguous as they are now saturated by the success of consumer capitalism.

>>> back to Consumers, Commodities & Consumption, Vol. 12(2) May 2011.