UC Berkeley’s flagship institute for social science research

Our purpose is captured in our name: we provide an organizational framework—a “matrix”—that supports cross-disciplinary research pursued by social scientists across the University of California, Berkeley campus and beyond.

Matrix News

Research Teams

Published August 17, 2022

Matrix Announces Research Teams for 2022-2023

Social Science Matrix has selected six new Matrix Research Teams for the 2022-2023 academic year. Matrix Research Teams are groups of scholars who gather regularly to explore or develop a novel question or emerging field in the social sciences. This year’s funded teams — three faculty-led teams and three student-led teams — were chosen following review by a cross-disciplinary panel of faculty members.

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Authors Meet Critics

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Event Date: September 9th, 2022
1:00pm-2:30pm Pacific

Authors Meet Critics: “The Government of Emergency” 

Join us on Friday, September 9, from 1-2:30pm PDT for an “Authors Meet Critics” discussion focused on "The Government of Emergency: Vital Systems, Expertise, and the Politics of Security," by Stephen Collier and Andrew Lakoff. The authors will be joined in conversation by Michael Watts, and Aihwa Ong will moderate.

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Matrix On Point

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Event Date: September 26th, 2022
12:00pm-1:30pm

Matrix on Point: Humanitarian Technologies 

Register for an online Matrix on Point panel discussion on how technology is changing humanitarian interventions, the human rights of recipients, and the broader power relations between donors and recipients. With Daragh Murray, University of Essex Human Rights Centre & School of Law; Fleur Johns, UNSW Sydney; and Wendy Wong, from the Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy at the University of Toronto.

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Authors Meet Critics

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Event Date: September 30th, 2022
12:00pm-1:30pm Pacific

Authors Meet Critics: “Work Pray Code: When Work Becomes Religion in Silicon Valley”

Join us on September 30 for an "Author Meets Critics" panel featuring Carolyn Chen, Associate Professor in the UC Berkeley Department of Ethnic Studies, presenting her book, "Work Pray Code: When Work Becomes Religion in Silicon Valley." Professor Chen will be joined in conversation by Arlie Hochschild, Professor Emerita in the UC Berkeley Department of Sociology, and Morgan Ames, Assistant Professor of Practice in the School of Information and Associate Director of Research for the Center for Science, Technology, Medicine and Society.

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Authors Meet Critics

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Event Date: October 10th, 2022
12:00 PM to 1:30 PM PDT

Author Meets Critics: “Voices in the Code”

Policymakers and the public often find algorithms to be complex, opaque, and intimidating—and it can be tempting to pretend that hard moral questions have simple technological answers. Join us on October 10 for an "Authors Meet Critics" panel about the book "Voices in the Code: A Story About People, Their Values, and the Algorithm They Made," by David Robinson, a visiting scholar at Matrix and a member of the faculty at Apple University. Robinson will be joined in conversation by Iason Gabriel, a Staff Research Scientist at DeepMind, and Deirdre Mulligan, Professor in the UC Berkeley School of Information.

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Authors Meet Critics

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Event Date: October 14th, 2022
12:00 PM to 1:30 PM PDT

Author Meets Critics: “Keeping It Unreal: Comics and Black Queer Fantasy”

Join us on October 14 for an Authors Meet Critics panel on "Keeping It Unreal: Comics and Black Queer Fantasy," by Darieck Scott, Professor of African American Studies at UC Berkeley. Scott will be joined in conversation by Ula Taylor and Scott Bukatman, and Greg Niemeyer will moderate.

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Authors Meet Critics

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Event Date: November 9th, 2022
12:00 PM to 1:30 PM PT

Authors Meet Critics: How the Clinic Made Gender

Register to join us on November 9 for an "Authors Meet Critics" panel on "How the Clinic Made Gender: The Medical History of a Transformative Idea," a new book by Sandra Eder, Assistant Professor of History at UC Berkeley and Acting Director of the Center for Science, Technology, Medicine and Society (CSTMS). Eder will be joined in conversation by Professors Laura Nelson and Danya Lagos; the panel will be moderated by Catherine Ceniza Choy.

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Matrix News

Funding Opportunity

Published August 17, 2022

PhD Students: Apply to be a Social Science Matrix Communications Fellow

Want to contribute to the Matrix website? We are inviting PhD students or candidates in the UC Berkeley Division of Social Sciences to apply for the Social Science Matrix Communications Fellowship. Fellows will meet monthly and contribute at least two articles, podcasts, or other features for the Matrix website during the 2022-2023 academic year. Each fellow will also receive a stipend of $1500.

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Matrix News

Research Teams

Published August 17, 2022

Matrix Announces Research Teams for 2022-2023

Social Science Matrix has selected six new Matrix Research Teams for the 2022-2023 academic year. Matrix Research Teams are groups of scholars who gather regularly to explore or develop a novel question or emerging field in the social sciences. This year’s funded teams — three faculty-led teams and three student-led teams — were chosen following review by a cross-disciplinary panel of faculty members.

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Podcast

Interview

Published August 10, 2022

Institutionalizing Child Welfare: An Interview with Matty Lichtenstein

This episode of the Matrix Podcast features an interview with Matty Lichtenstein, a recent PhD from Berkeley’s Sociology Department, who studies how state and professional organizations shape social and health inequalities in maternal and child welfare. The interview focuses on Lichtenstein's research on the transformation of American child welfare and the impact of that transformation on contemporary maternal and infant health practices.

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Matrix News

Faculty Fellows

Published August 10, 2022

Four Professors Chosen as 2022-2023 Matrix Faculty Fellows

Four UC Berkeley professors have been selected to be the inaugural Matrix Faculty Fellows for the 2022-2023 academic year: Gašper Beguš, Assistant Professor of Linguistics; Puck Engman, Assistant Professor of History; Ethan Katz, Associate Professor of History; and Salar Mameni, Assistant Professor of Ethnic Studies.

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Article

Podcast

Published August 3, 2022

Race, Gender, and Political Speech: An Interview with Gabriella Licata

When Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was insulted on the Capitol steps in July 2020, it was a brief media sensation. But what does being called an “effing bitch” mean for how we think about political speech? This episode of the Matrix Podcast features an interview with Gabriella Licata, a PhD candidate in Romance Languages and Literatures at UC Berkeley, focused on how the standard language ideologies of political speech come to shape perceptions of language and people in Congress.

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Article

Interview

Published June 17, 2022

How CRISPR Became Routine

Read a Matrix visual interview with Santiago Molina, a Postdoctoral Fellow at Northwestern University, who researches how CRISPR, the genetic engineering technology, has become an everyday part of scientific practice.

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