Research & Biography

William Sites is an Associate Professor in the School of Social Service Administration at the University of Chicago. His fields of interest include urban studies, community organization, political economy, social movements, immigration, race, culture and social theory.

At SSA, Professor Sites teaches courses in political processes, urban political economy, social movements, urban politics, community organization, and the role of theory in research.

Professor Sites's work focuses on how economic and political structures, policymakers, and community action shape the ways in which cities develop and change, and on how such changes relate to the power and social welfare of residents. Focusing most centrally on whether and how urban politics matters for lower-income people, his research has addressed such issues as conflicts over neighborhood gentrification, the evolution of urban development policy, and the implications of the U.S. response to globalization for social equity and community change in American cities.  His book-length study of the transformation of New York City, issued as part of the Globalization and Community series by the University of Minnesota Press, is titled Remaking New York: Primitive Globalization and the Politics of Urban Community.

Current research interests include contemporary immigrant mobilization, the history of labor politics and urban governance in the American metropolis, and the political economy of music and culture in post-World War II Chicago.

Professor Sites received an I.B. (International Baccalaureate) from Pearson College, a B.A. in Creative Writing from Oberlin College, and a Ph.D. in Sociology from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York.