Advanced Research Collaborative  


Below are profiles of the Spring 2021 Distinguished CUNY Fellows

Brian Collins

Brian A. Collins is an Associate Professor of Bilingual Education at Hunter College, CUNY. His research focuses on the dual language development of children of immigrants in the U.S. and how language competences influence dimensions of children’s social, psychological, and academic well-being. Dr. Collins is a Co-Investigator on the Harvard Project on Child Language and Developmental Psychiatry (CLDP) which has followed over 200 bilingual Latino children in public schools from kindergarten to 12th grade. Findings from this study have had important implications for young Latino children and demonstrated multiple strengths and adaptive pathways, as well as academic and social-emotional well-being related to language proficiency. In addition, Dr. Collins is an Associate Investigator on New York State Initiative for Emergent Bilinguals (NYSIEB), a collaborative CUNY project funded by the NYS DOE to support emergent bilinguals in New York City schools. Dr. Collins is committed to connecting his research to educators, clinicians, and specialists who work with bilingual children of immigrants.

Elizabeth Heath

Elizabeth Heath is an associate professor of history at Baruch College. Her research focuses on labor, race, and the role of empire in the development of capitalism in modern France. Her first book Wine, Sugar, and the Making of Modern France: Global Economic Crisis and the Racialization of French Citizenship, 1870-1910 (Cambridge, 2014) and won the Alf Andrew Heggoy prize in 2015 for best book dealing with the French colonial experience from 1815 to the present from the French Colonial Historical Society. She is currently writing a book entitled Invisible Empires: Colonial Commodities, Capitalism, and the Modern French Self, which explores the role that colonial territories, producers, and products played in the emergence of distinctive forms of perception and cognition that aided the development of French industrial capitalism between 1750 and 1970.


Dr. Jayashree Kamblé is an Associate Professor of English at LaGuardia Community College. Her research focuses on mass-market romance fiction and romance narratives in other media. Her first book was Making Meaning in Popular Romance Fiction: An Epistemolog []y (Palgrave, 2014). She recently co-edited a book collection for Routledge titled The Research Companion to Popular Romance Fiction [] (2020) and published an article on women, transculturalism, and citizenship in romance in the Journal of Popular Romance Studies []. She is currently working on her second book (on romance fiction heroines) as well as articles on the racial geographies of historical romance novels (supported by the ARC Fellowship) and the history of American romance fiction (supported by the William P. Kelly Research Fellowship). She is a Vice-President of the International Association for the Study of Popular Romance [] and often discusses her research on podcasts such as Shelf Love [].


Vivian Louie is Professor of Urban Policy and Planning and Director of the Asian American Studies Center and Program at Hunter College. She was CUNY Thomas Tam Visiting Professor from 2013-2014. Louie has been associate and assistant professor, and postdoctoral fellow in education, as well as lecturer in sociology at Harvard, and a program officer at the William T. Grant Foundation. She has also previously worked as a newspaper journalist, journalism teacher, and youth magazine editor. Louie’s research has focused on understanding the factors that shape success along the educational pipeline among immigrants and the children of immigrants. She is the author of two books, Compelled to Excel: Immigration, Education and Opportunity Among Chinese Americans (Stanford University Press) and Keeping the Immigrant Bargain: The Costs and Rewards of Success in America (Russell Sage Foundation), along with numerous scholarly articles, chapters, and entries. She is co-editor of and contributor to a third book, Writing Immigration: Scholars and Journalists in Dialogue (University of California Press). Louie has received research support from the Social Science Research Council, the National Academy of Education/Spencer Foundation, and the Russell Sage Foundation. Her research has been featured on NPR, All Things Considered and additional news outlets. She serves on the New York State Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, the Russell Sage Foundation Race, Ethnicity and Immigration Advisory Committee and the board of Youth Communication. She previously served on the board of the Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center. Louie earned her Ph.D. and M.A. from the Yale University Department of Sociology, M.A. from the Stanford University Department of Communication, and A.B. from Harvard University in History and Literature.


Hongwei Xu is an associate professor in the Department of Sociology at Queens College – CUNY. He received his BA in sociology from Peking University and his PhD in sociology from Brown University. Prior to joining Queens College in 2018, he was an assistant research professor in the Survey Research Center and the Population Studies Center at the University of Michigan. His substantive research interests include social and environmental determinants of health, the life course perspective of population aging, spatial inequality, and child development. His empirical research draws on data from a variety of sources including but not limited to nationally representative surveys, historical archives and maps, remote sensing, and administrative records. He is specialized in survey methods, hierarchical modeling, spatial statistics, survival analysis, and causal inference using observational data. He has conducted social research in diverse settings, including the United States, China, India, and Kenya. His research has been supported by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. His work has been published in, among others, American Journal of Sociology, Demography, European Sociological Review, Health & Place, International Journal of Epidemiology, Population Studies, Sociological Methods, Social Science & Medicine, and Journals of Gerontology Series B (Psychological and Social Sciences).

Below are profiles of the Fall 2020 Distinguished CUNY Fellows


Libby Garland
 teaches history at CUNY's Kingsborough Community College, and in the Master's of Arts in Liberal Studies program at the Graduate Center. She is the author of After They Closed the Gates: Jewish Illegal Immigration to the United States, 1921-1965 (University of Chicago Press, 2014).


Kaufman is an Assistant Professor of Linguistics at Queens College of the City University of New York. He received his BA in linguistics from the University of the Philippines, Diliman and his Ph.D. in Linguistics from Cornell University. He is also a founder and co-director of the Endangered Language Alliance, a non-profit organization working to document and sustain languages spoken by Indigenous and immigrant communities in New York City. As a linguist, his research focuses primarily on the Austronesian languages of the Philippines and Indonesia and in this connection he also serves as co-editor of the journal Oceanic Linguistics. For the last several years he has collaborated with computer scientist Raphael Finkel on an NSF grant to produce online linguistic corpora in endangered languages. He is also involved in a long-term collaboration focusing on questions of health and language among Indigenous New Yorkers from throughout the continent. 

Richard E. Ocejo [] is associate professor of sociology at John Jay College and the Graduate Center, and the director of the MA program in International Migration Studies at the Graduate Center. An urban and cultural sociologist, he is the author of Masters of Craft: Old Jobs in the New Urban Economy [] (Princeton University Press, 2017), about the transformation of low-status occupations into cool, cultural taste-making jobs (cocktail bartenders, craft distillers, upscale men’s barbers, and whole animal butchers), and of Upscaling Downtown: From Bowery Saloons to Cocktail Bars in New York City [] (Princeton University Press, 2014)about growth policies, nightlife, and conflict in gentrified neighborhoods. His work has appeared in such journals as the Urban Affairs ReviewPoetics, Journal of Urban Affairs, Sociological Perspectives, and City & Community. He is also the editor of Urban Ethnography: Legacies and Challenges [] (Emerald, 2019) and Ethnography and the City: Readings on Doing Urban Fieldwork [] (Routledge, 2012), a co-Book Review Editor at City & Community, and serves on the editorial boards of the journals Contemporary Sociology, Work and Occupations, Metropolitics, and the Journal for Undergraduate Ethnography. Finally, he is a podcast host at the New Books in Sociology [], part of the New Books Network.

Charles Post
 teaches sociology at the Borough of Manhattan Community College and the Graduate Center. His first book was The American Road to Capitalism: Studies in Class Structure, Economic Development and Political Conflict, 1620-1877 (Haymarket Books, 2012) was shortlisted for the Isaac and Tamara Deutscher Prize in 2011 and recieved the Paul Sweezy Marxist Book Aware from the Marxist Section of the American Sociological Association in 2013. He has published in Historical Materialism, Journal of Peasant Studies, Journal of Agrarian Change and New Left Review.  His project at the ARC on "The Deep Determinants of Inequality: The Dynamics of Plant Closures in the U.S. Tire Industry, 1966-2008" is part of a larger project on labor-capital conflicts in the US rubber industry in the twentieth century.


Juan L. Rodríguez
 is an Assistant Professor of anthropology at Queens College, CUNY. His expertise is on semiotic and linguistic ideologies, specifically how these are mobilized to produce public political life in the process of state formation and the formation of diasporic identities. He has been interested in how material circumstances affect the way in which politicians, and the voters who support them, conceive of the linguistic practices and performances that sustain their relationship. His work relies on a discourse-centered approach to language and culture taking instances of language use, and performative practices in context, as the starting point of his ethnographic research. He combines this approach with an interest in practices of translation and semiotic transduction to understand how indigenous languages in Venezuela are translated into Spanish and how Spanish have been translated into Warao, an indigenous language of the Orinoco Delta in eastern Venezuela. He takes these translation practices as part of a more general process of transduction of political speech into political influence through the distribution of state resources. His book, Language and Revolutionary Magic in the Orinoco Delta (Bloomsbury Academic Press), explores the role of translation in the process of transforming oil revenue into political influence arguing that these are interconnected processes that help us understand the place of Warao speakers in the context of the Venezuelan public political sphere.  Over the last year he started a new research project in collaboration with Dr. Miki Makihara, funded by CUNY’s PSC-Research Foundation and a Research Enhancement Grant from Queens College, in which he explores linguistic intimacy in the Venezuelan diaspora both in Chile and the U.S. In this new project He will conduct a multi-site ethnographic investigation about the ways in which the largest migratory phenomenon in the hemisphere have produced new linguistic and semiotic practices. There are now over 5 million Venezuelans migrants and refugees in different Latin American countries and the United States. The Venezuelan diaspora in Chile is a very new phenomenon, and the linguistic ideologies that sustain this diasporic identity are being drawn in the context of the worst economic and political crisis in the history of Venezuela, and a profound political crisis in Chile.

Read about past Distinguished CUNY Fellows