Office Hours for :
- none; currently on leave
- Ph.D., University of Arizona
- Race and Ethnicity, Immigration, Social Movements/Collective Behavior, Social Psychology
Current Research Projects
- "Asian American Panethnicity"
This project focuses on racial group formation and ethnic boundary change. Using Asian Americans as the main case, this research explores how distinct ethnic groups in the post-Civil Rights era were able to come together to create a broader collective identity around which to organize. It moves beyond the racialization hypothesis and draws upon theories of ethnic boundary formation to illuminate the conditions under which groups will cross ethnic boundaries to create new identities and solidarities. By documenting and analyzing patterns of panethnic collective action, organizational formation, organizational coalitions, and intermarriage in different locations across the U.S., this project forges new ground by developing a systematic understanding of group boundaries and change.
- "The Civic and Political Incorporation of Immigrants in New Destinations" (with Kimberly Ebert)
Funded by the Russell Sage Foundation, American Sociological Association, and National Science Foundation
This project has two main goals: (1) to document the patterns and types of immigrant collective action in non-traditional and traditional destinations, and (2) to investigate how variation in contextual factors across metropolitan areas and their change over time influence the occurrence and rate of protest and civic events where immigrants are the main organizers and participants. The study is based on statistical analyses of an original data set documenting immigrant collective action constructed from English- and Spanish-language newspapers, and it will identify potential mechanisms underlying the relationship between context and immigrant adaptation. This research provides new insights on the civic and political integration of immigrants in the U.S. with an emphasis on understanding of adaptation as a group or collective process. See additional description at Russell Sage Foundation website:
- This multi-method study examines how and the extent to which neighborhood and community contexts - with a special focus on community-based organizations - facilitate the adaptation of immigrant and second-generation youth. Using nationally-representative and regional data sets, this research will illuminate the the mechanisms through which immigrant and ethnic communities influence the educational competence, physical health, and emotional well-being of youth. In later phases of the project, neighborhood sites will be chosen to study the processes and practices occurring within community-based organizations. The project will provide a comprehensive understanding of youth adaptation outcomes and much needed information about how organizations within immigrant communities work, both of which can be used to develop effective programs and organizations to improve the lives of young people. .
- "Immigrant-Native Relations in 21st-America: Intergroup Contact, Trust, and Civic Engagement" (with Michael Jones-Correa, Helen Marrow, and Linda Tropp) Funded by the Russell Sage Foundation This interdisciplinary mixed-methods project addresses current debates about ethnic diversity and its effect on social cohesion and civic engagement by investigating where and how contact occurs between immigrant and native groups, and how contact in turn shapes feeling of trust, views of public policies, and participation in civic life. We are in the beginning stages of conducting a large-scale survey, in-depth interviews, and observations in Philadelphia and Atlanta among two immigrant groups, Mexicans and South Asian Indians, and two native-born groups, blacks and whites. We will provide an elaborated understanding of how different groups perceive and define one another and experience diversity within the different spaces they inhabit, as well as what intergroup interactions look like in public areas across a variety of settings in metropolitan areas.
- Okamoto, Dina and Kim Ebert. 2010. "Beyond the Ballot: Immigrant Collective Action in Gateways and New Destinations." Social Problems 57: 529-558.
- Okamoto, Dina and Rima Wilkes. 2008. "The Opportunities and Costs of Voice and Exit: Modeling Ethnic Group Rebellion and Emigration." Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 34(3): 347-369.
- Okamoto, Dina. 2007. "Marrying Out: A Boundary Approach to Understanding the Marital Integration of Asian Americans." Social Science Research 36(4): 1391-1414.
- Okamoto, Dina. 2006. "Institutional Panethnicity: Boundary Formation in Asian-American Organizing." Social Forces 85: 1-25.
- Okamoto, Dina. 2003. “Toward a Theory of Panethnicity: Explaining Asian American Collective Action.” American Sociological Review 68: 811-42.
- Okamoto, Dina and Lynn Smith-Lovin. 2001. “Changing the Subject: Gender, Status, and the Dynamics of Topic Change.” American Sociological Review 66: 852-73.
- Hechter, Michael and Dina Okamoto. 2001. “Political Consequences of Minority Group Formation.” Annual Review of Political Science 4: 189-215.
- Okamoto, Dina and Paula England. 1999. “Is There a Supply-Side to Occupational Sex Segregation?” Sociological Perspectives 42: 557-82.