UMass Boston

Meghan Kallman

GISD - Dean's Office
Associate Professor
Bayside Floor 04

Areas of Expertise

Organizations, institutional theory, international development, political sociology, nonprofits, third sector, public service, social change and social movements, networks


PhD, Sociology, Brown University
MA, Social Science, University of Chicago
BA, Sociology (minor in Studio Art), Smith College

Additional Information

Meghan Elizabeth Kallman is an organizational theorist and an expert on political and development sociology. She earned her PhD in Sociology in 2016 from Brown University, and holds additional degrees from the University of Chicago and Smith College. She is the recipient of two prestigious National Science Foundation grants, as well as grants from the Horowitz Foundation for Social Policy, the Cogut Center, the Joseph P. Healy Grant Program, and others. Her work draws on organizational theory to understand how organizations shape the politics of their intrinsically motivated participants, including environmental, political, and community movements. Dr. Kallman also works on network theory and social movements. Her second book, which uses a case study of the US Peace Corps to make understand how organizations shape the politics of their participants, was published in 2020 by Columbia University Press, and her most recent book was published in April 2022 by Rutgers University Press. Dr. Kallman is currently working on a new project about reproductive politics in an era of climate crisis. 

She was a 2015-2016 fellow with the Women's Policy Institute of Rhode Island, a 2-term city councilor in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, and is currently a Rhode Island state senator, representing District 15 (Pawtucket/North Providence). She is the recipient of the 2022 Public Sociology Award from the Eastern Sociological Society.



Kallman, M. E., and Josephine Ferorelli. The Conceivable Future: Planning Families and Taking Action in the Age of Climate Change. (Forthcoming, Rowman & Littlefield)

Malin, Stephanie A., and Meghan Elizabeth Kallman. 2022. Building Something Better: Environmental Crises and the Promise of Community Change. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press

Kallman, M. E. 2020. The Death of Idealism: Development and Anti-Politics in the Peace Corps. New York, NY: Columbia University Press

Kallman, M. E., and Terry N. Clark. 2016. The Third Sector: Community Organizations, NGOs, and Nonprofits. Champaign, IL: University of Illinois Press

Clark, Terry N. and Meghan Elizabeth Kallman. 2011. The Global Transformation of Organized Groups: New Roles for Community Service Organizations, Non-Profits, and the New Political Culture. Beijing: China International Center for Economic and Technical Exchanges, Ministry of Commerce.  

Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles and Book Chapters

Kallman, M.E. “Why Believing Others Makes Us Better (Public) Sociologists”. Forthcoming, Sociological Forum.

Kallman, M.E. and Scott Frickel. 2022. “Making the ‘Business Case’: Vocabularies of Motive and Clean Tech Innovation in the Hidden Developmental State.” Socio-Economic Review mwac061. doi: 10.1093/ser/mwac061. Forthcoming in print.

Malin, Stephanie A., and Meghan Elizabeth Kallman. 2022. “Enforcing Hopelessness: Complicity, Dependence, and Organizing in Frontline Oil and Gas Communities.” Social Problems. doi: 10.1093/socpro/spac032.

Kallman, M E. ‘Autonomist Leadership and Organizational Practices in Street Bands’. Research in the Handbook on the Sociology of Organizations. Mary Godwyn, Ed. (in production, forthcoming in print 2022; Edward Elger Publishing)

Kallman, M. E. 2021. ‘Encapsulation, Professionalization and Managerialism in the Peace Corps’, International Public Management Journal, 24 (6), pp. 943-972

Kallman, M. E. 2020. “Leadership, Inclusion, and Group Decision-Making in HONK! Bands.” in HONK!: A Street Band Renaissance of Music and Activism, edited by R. Garofalo, E. T. Allen, and A. Snyder. New York: Routledge.

Kallman, M. E. (2019). “Living more through knowing more”: College education in prison classrooms. Adult Education Quarterly.

Kallman, M. E., & Frickel, S. (online first, forthcoming in print). Nested logics and smart meter adoption: Institutional processes and organizational change in the diffusion of smart meters in the United States. Energy Research & Social Science. 

Kallman, M. E. (forthcoming 2020). Leaders in leaderlessness: Democracy, inclusion, and group decision-making in street bands. In R. Garofalo, E. Allen, & A. Snyder (Eds.), HONK!: A street band renaissance of music and activism. New York, NY: Routledge.

Kallman, M. E. (2019, online first, forthcoming in print). Encapsulation, professionalization and managerialism in the Peace Corps. International Public Management Journal.

Kallman, M. E. (2019, online first, forthcoming in print). The “male” privilege of White women, the “White” privilege of Black women, and vulnerability to violence: An intersectional analysis of Peace Corps workers in host countries. International Feminist Journal of Politics.

Kallman, M. E., & Frickel, S. ( 2019). Power to the people: Industrial transition movements and energy populism. Environmental Sociology, 5(3), 255–68.

Kallman, M. E. (2018). Dimensions of cosmopolitanism: State identification and values among Peace Corps volunteers. International Journal of Sociology, 48(3), 189–215.

Kallman, M. E. (2018). Teaching sociology in a men’s prison: How total institutions shape pedagogy and engagement with content. Teaching Sociology, 46(4), 295–308.

Frickel, S., Wühr, D., Horne, C., & Kallman, M. E. (2017). Field of visions: Inter-organizational challenges to smart energy transition in Washington State. Brooklyn Law Review, 82.

Kallman, M. E. (2017). Allocative failures: Networks and institutions in international grantmaking relationships. VOLUNTAS: International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations, 28(2), 745–772.

Kallman, M. E. (2016). Technical, emotional, professional: Idealism and commitment in the Peace Corps. In F.-X. du Vaujany & N. Mitav (Eds.), Materiality, rules, and regulation. London, UK: Palgrave.

Kallman, M. E. (2014). Making the cosmopolitan canopy in Boston’s Haymarket Square. Ethnic and Racial Studies, 38(5), 759–774.

White Papers

Horn, Keren, and Meghan Elizabeth Kallman. 2021. ‘What the Next Mayor of Boston Needs to Do about the Affordable Housing Crisis in Boston’. Commissioned by the Boston Area Research Initiative (BARI), an interuniversity partnership that pursues original urban research on the cutting edge of scholarship and public policy.

Book Reviews

Kallman, M. E. 2021. ‘Amateurs without Borders: The Aspirations and Limits of Global Compassion' University of California Press, 2021'. Social Forces.

Other Publications

Kallman, M. E. (2019). Turning towards each other. Part of theUncertain Futures Forum, hosted by the Post-Carbon Institute. 

Kallman, M. E. (2019). Thinking intersectionally about women in the Peace Corps. Blog of the International Feminist Journal of Politics.

Kallman, M. E., & Ferorelli, J. (2018). On the future: A harsh climate for motherhood. In A. Dolman, B. Schwartz-Bechet, & D. J. Davis (Eds.), Motherhood in precarious times. Bradford, ON: Demeter Press.

Kallman, M. E. (2015). Professionalized activism and social change. In Mobilizing ideas: A blog of the Center for the Study of Social Movements at the University of Notre Dame.