The Heller School for Social Policy and Management

Carmen Sirianni

Morris Hillquit Professor of Labor and Social Thought

Carmen  Sirianni's photo


Office: Pearlman Hall 210
Phone: 781-736-2652
Brandeis Directory


Civic innovation, sustainable cities, public policy for democracy, political sociology, environmental organizations, public administration, employee participation. Current research, teaching, and public service focus on civic innovation and democratic renewal in the contemporary U.S., democracy in environmental and urban fields, as well as the history of self-governance in American Political Development.


  • SOC 1a - Order and Change in Society
  • SOC 123b - The Welfare State and Nonprofit America
  • SOC 147a - Sustainable and Resilient Cities
  • SOC 175b - Environmental Movements: Organizations, Networks, and Partnerships
  • SOC 218b - Sustainable and Just Cities: Graduate Seminar
  • SOC 225b - Environmental Sociology, Politics, and Policy


  • State University of New York at Binghamton
  • New School for Social Research
  • Manhattan College

Carmen Sirianni

Morris Hillquit Professor of Labor and Social Thought


Interested in the study of civic innovation, collaborative governance, and public policy across various institutional fields, especially sustainable cities, environmental organizations. Engaged scholarship with national nonprofits, public agencies, civic associations.

Awards and Honors

  • Fellow, National Academy of Public Administration (elected by membership, which includes former U.S senators, governors, mayors, federal agancy heads), chartered by U.S. Congress), permanent appointment (2010 - 2019)
  • Faculty Affiliate, Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University (2009 - 2019)
  • Morris Hillquit Professor of Labor and Social Thought: endowed chair (2009)
  • Senior Advisor, National Commission on Civic Renewal (1996 - 1998)
  • Research Director, White House Working Group (Domestic Policy Council), "Reinventing Citizenship" (1994)
  • Fellow (Member), Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, (1985 - 1986)
  • National Humanities Fellowship (1985 - 1986)
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University (1978 - 1979)


  • Sirianni, Carmen. ""Justice and the Division of Labor: Durkheim's Unresolved Tensions in The Divisi¬on of Labor in Societ¬y,"." Durkheim. Ed. Roger Cotterell. Surrey, UK: Ashgate, 2010 (forthcoming)
  • Sirianni, Carmen. "Big Rights, Small Citizens: A Review Essay." Rev. of Genealogies of Citizenship: Markets, Statelessness, and the Right to Have Rights (New York and London: Cambridge University Press),, by Margaret Somers. Contemporary Sociology
  • Sirianni, Carmen. "Civic Innovation and Youth Engagement: The Hampton Model of Systems Change and Culture Change." Critical Studies in Organization and Bureaucracy, third edition. third ed. Ed. Frank Fischer, Carmen Sirianni, and Michael Geppert. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2008 (forthcoming)
  • Sirianni, Carmen. ""Civic Innovation: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow"." by an essay review of three new books and an overview of the field of civic innovation since my co-authored 2001 book, Civic Innovation in America. Perspectives on Politics 2017
  • Sirianni, Carmen. "“Civic Innovation: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow.”." by three books reviewed, in context of an overview of the field of civic innovation since the publiction of my book in 2001, Civic Innovation in America. Perspectives on Politics. 15:1 (March 2017), 122-28 vol. 15 of 1 March 2017: 122-28.
  • Jennifer Girouard and Carmen Sirianni, ed. Varieties of Civic Innovation: Deliberative, Collaborative, Network, and Narrative Approaches. Nashville: Vanderbilt University Press, 2014.
  • Sirianni, Carmen. ""Governance"." Encyclopedia of Political Thought, ed. Michael T. Gibbons, Diana Coole, Elisabeth Ellis, and Kennan Ferguson,. first ed. 1 vols. 2014.
  • Sirianni, Carmen. "Review in symposium." Rev. of In the Interests of Others: Organizations and Social Activism (Princeton University Press, 2013), by John S. Ahlquist and Margaret Levi. Perspectives on Politics vol. !2:4 (December 2014) 2014: 862-863.
  • Sirianni, Carmen. "“Bringing the State Back in Through Collaborative Governance: Emergent Mission and Practice at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency,”." Varieties of Civic Engagement: Deliberative, Collaborative, Network, and Narrative Approaches. Ed. Jennifer Girouard and Carmen Sirianni. Nashville: Vanderbilt University Press, 2014. 203-238.
  • Sirianni, Carmen. ""A Movement for Democratic Renewal"." Reconstructing Publicity: A Study of Community Building in Rural China. vol. 2 Beijing, China, and Dayton, OH: Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, 2013 (Chinese edition); Kettering Foundation (English edition), 2013. Chinese edition published 2011..
  • Sirianni, Carmen and Jennifer Girouard. ""The Civics of Urban Planning"." The Oxford Handbook of Urban Planning. Ed. Rachel Weber and Randall Crane. New York: Oxford University Press, 2012. 669-90.
  • Sirianni, Carmen and Stephanie Sofer. ""Environmental Organizations"." The State of Nonprofit America. Second ed. Ed. Lester Salamon. Washington, DC: Brookings Press, 2012. 294-328.
  • Sirianni, Carmen, ed. Review essay in symposium on Cathy J. Cohen, Democracy Remixed: Black Youth and the Future of American Politics. New York: Oxford University Press, 2010,. Perspectives on Politics, June 2012, 2012.
  • Sirianni, Carmen. "“Networks of Democracy”." Democracy: A Journal of Ideas, special section, First Principles: Reclaiming Citizenship (with James Kloppenberg, Eric Liu) 24 (2012): 20-27.
  • Sirianni, Carmen. "Democracy as Problem Solving." Rev. of Democracy as Problem Solving, by Xavier de Souza Briggs. Perspectives on Politics 2011
  • Sirianni, Carmen (lead co-author of meeting report, as well as accompanying academic report). Partnering with Communities: Federal Models of Community-Based Programs. Washington DC Brookings Institution conference: 2010.
  • Sirianni, Carmen and Diana Schor. "City Government as Enabler of Youth Civic Engagement." Policies for Youth Civic Engagement. Ed. James Youniss and Peter Levine. Nashville: Vanderbilt University Press, 2009. 121-63.
  • Sirianni, Carmen. "Street Science." Rev. of Street Science: Community Knowledge and Environmental Health Justice, by Jason Corburn. Journal of the American Planning Association vol. 75:2 (2009
  • Sirianni, Carmen. "The Civic Mission of a Federal Agency in an Age of Networked Governance,." American Behavioral Scientist 52. 6 (2009): 933-952.
  • Sirianni, Carmen. Investing in Democracy: Engaging Citizens in Collaborative Governance. Washington, DC: Brookings Press, 2009.
  • Sirianni, Carmen. "Neighborhood Planning as Collaborative Democratic Design: the Case of Seattle,." Journal of the American Planning Association 73. 4 (2007): 73-87.
  • Sirianni, Carmen. "The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as Civic Enabler: The Watershed Approach,." National Civic Review 95. 3 (2006): 17-34.
  • Sirianni, Carmen and Lewis Friedland. The Civic Renewal Movement: Community Building and Democracy in the U.S.. Dayton: Kettering Foundation Press, 2005.
  • Sirianni,Carmen. "Civic Innovation, Conflict, and Politics." The Good Society. Ed. Lewis Friedland., 2003. 74-82.
  • Sirianni,Carmen. "Volunteering Then and Now: Civic Innovatoin and Public Policy for Democracy." United We Serve: National Service and the Future of Citizenship. Ed. E.J. Dionne, Kayla Drogosz, and Robert Litan. Brookings Institution Press, Washington DC, 2003. 191-197.
  • Sirianni,Carmen. Civic Innovation in America: Community Empowerment, Public Policy, and the Movement for Civic Renewal. University of California Press, 2001.
  • Sirianni,Carmen, co-ed. Cameron MacDonald. Working in the Service Society. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1996.
  • Sirianni,Carmen, co-ed. Frank Fischer. Critical Studies in Organization and Bureaucracy. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1994.
  • Sirianni,Carmen, co-ed. Karl Hinrichs and William Roche. Working Time In Transition: the Political Economy of Working Time in Industrial Nations. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1991.
  • Sirianni,Carmen, ed.. Worker Participation and the Politics of Reform. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1987.
  • Sirianni,Carmen, co-ed. Frank Fischer. Critical Studies in Organization and Bureaucracy. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1984.
  • Sirianni,Carmen, co-ed. James Cronin. Work, Community, and Power: The Experience of Labor in Europe and America, 1900-1925. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1983.
  • Sirianni,Carmen. Workers' Control and Socialist Democracy: The Early Soviet Experience. London: NLB, 1982.