Women and Gender Studies Program

Ragini Saira Malhotra Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Sociology, Department of Criminology
Ragini Malhotra

Office Location

300D Payson Smith



Academic Degrees

  • Ph.D. in Sociology, University of Massachusetts-Amherst
  • M.A. in Sociology, University of Massachusetts-Amherst
  • M.I.A. International Affairs, Human Rights & South Asia, Columbia University
  • B.A. Political Science & Human Rights; Anthropology; Barnard College, Columbia University


Dr. Malhotra received her PhD and MA in Sociology from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. She also holds a Masters degree in International Affairs from Columbia University, and earned her BA from Barnard College, Columbia University. Ragini is a publicly-engaged sociologist whose research centers on the politics of urban violence in childhood, gender, work, and everyday forms of criminalization and state surveillance. As an ethnographer of the Global South and urban India, Ragini has also published collaboratively on transnational feminized labor migration using quantitative methods. Both her research and teaching are motivated by her commitment to social justice and community-engagement. Before joining the USM faculty, Ragini taught in the Sociology Department at UMass-Amherst. As an educator, she emphasizes connections between theory and practice, drawing critically from her global experience working at the intersection of development, social policy, and human rights. In both India and the U.S, Ragini is politically active and engaged in community-level efforts to combat systemic power and state violence. Her teaching and scholar-activism have been recognized through awards and grants.

Research Interests

Politics of Urban Violence, Everyday Criminalization, Childhood, Gender, Labor & Work, Political Sociology, Ethnographic Methods, Global South