Department of Sociology

Ed Collom

Professor of Sociology


120 Bedford Street, Portland Campus

Office Hours Summer 2016

By appointment

Contact Information

Phone: 228-8385

I received my PhD in Sociology from the University of California-Riverside in June 2001 and became Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Southern Maine in September 2001. In September 2007 I was promoted to Associate Professor.  In September 2013 I was promoted to Professor.  From June 2008 through May 2011 I served as Chair of Sociology.  From June 2011 through May 2013 I served as President of USM AFUM, our faculty union.  I was the recipient of the 2006 Emerging Teacher-Scholar Award and the 2010-2011 Provost's Research Fellowship. I am currently the 2015-2016 Trustee Professor.

As native Southern Californians, my family and I have adjusted well to Maine and particularly enjoy the great city of Portland.

Research Interests

The broad areas of specialization that I work in are social movements, social networks, the sociology of work, the sociology of education, political sociology, and social inequality. I am primarily a quantitative survey researcher, but also employ other methods (most notably social network analysis) regularly. My research tends to surround the study of alternative social forms and focuses on three areas in particular: community currency (an alternative to the mainstream economy), home schooling (an alternative to the public education system), and workplace democracy (an alternative to bureaucratic control structures). All three of these are "bottom-up" initiatives to empower the marginalized. Community currencies and home schooling are forms of what I call "alternative social movements."

Recent Publications

“Microfinance, Cooperatives, and Time Banks: Community-Provided Welfare.”  In S. Harper and K.Hamblin, eds., International Handbook on Ageing and Public Policy (2014), pp. 433-444. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing.

Ed Collom, Judith N. Lasker, and Corinne Kyriacou. Equal Time, Equal Value: Community Currencies and Time Banking in the US. Surrey, England: Ashgate Publishing (August 2012).

"Motivations and Differential Participation in a Community Currency System: The Dynamics within a Local Social Movement Organization," Sociological Forum, 26, No 1 (2011), pp. 144-168.