Stockholms universitet

Tim BartleyForskare, affilierad

Om mig

I am an organizational, political, and economic sociologist with particular interests in globalization, labor, and the environment.  Much of my work examines the prospects for corporate accountability, decent work, sustainability, and environmental justice in global production networks.

My most recent book, Rules without Rights: Land, Labor, and Private Authority in the Global Economy (Oxford University Press), examines standards for decent work and sustainable development “on the ground” in Indonesia and China. Based on qualitative interviews with practitioners in each country, documentary evidence, and quantitative analyses, the book shows what corporate accountability and sustainability initiatives accomplish and why they so often fail.

In new research, I am examining public perceptions of state intervention to address distant labor and environmental problems (using survey experiments conducted in the United States and Germany), as well as perceptions of COVID-era disruptions among garment workers in Indonesia. I am also examining parallels and divergences in perceptions of globalization and immigration as cross-border market processes.  I continue to be interested in issues of conscientious consumption, transnational governance, and organizational fields, and I have a growing set of interests in digital surveillance and predictive analytics.

In addition to being an affiliated researcher at SCORE, I am a Professor of Sociology at Washington University in St. Louis and was previously on the faculty at Ohio State University and Indiana University. I received my PhD at the University of Arizona and later spent time as a visiting scholar at Princeton University, MIT, Sun Yat-sen University, University of Konstanz, University of St. Gallen, Université Paris-Dauphine, and the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies.  I previously served as co-editor of the journal Regulation & Governance, and I am the elected chair of the American Sociological Association’s section on Organizations, Occupations, and Work (OOW).


Research interests

Organizations, Economic sociology, Political sociology, Global and transnational sociology, Environment, Labor, Corporate Responsibility


Rules without Rights:  Land, Labor, and Private Authority in the Global Economy.  Oxford University Press, 2018.

The Politics of Land (ed. by T. Bartley)  Volume 26 of Research in Political Sociology.  Emerald Publishing, 2019.  

Looking Behind the Label:  Global Industries and the Conscientious Consumer (with Sebastian Koos, Hiram Samel, Gustavo Setrini, and Nikolas Summers). Indiana University Press, 2015.

Selected articles and chapters

Transnational Corporations and Global Governance.”  Annual Review of Sociology 44:145-165, 2018.

Shaming the Corporation: The Social Production of Targets and the Anti-Sweatshop Movement” (with Curtis Child).  American Sociological Review 79(4):653-679, 2014.

Fields.”  In Pragmatic Inquiry: Critical Concepts for Social Sciences, ed. by John R. Bowen, Nicolas Dodier, Jan Willem Duyvendak, and Anita Hardon.  Routledge, 2020.

Power at a Distance:  Organizational Power Across Boundaries” (with Matthew Soener and Carl Gershenson)  Sociology Compass13:e12737, 2019.

Communities of Practice as Cause and Consequence of Transnational Governance” (with Shawna Smith).  In Transnational Communities: Shaping Global Economic Governance, ed. by Marie-Laure Djelic and Sigrid Quack.  Cambridge University Press, 2010.

Territory, Private Authority, and Rights: The Place of Land Rights in Sustainable Agriculture and Forest Certification.”  In the Oxford Handbook of Comparative Environmental Politics, edited by Jeannie Sowers, Stacy D. VanDeveer, and Erika Weinthal, Oxford University Press, forthcoming.

Power and the Practice of Transnational Private Regulation.”  New Political Economy, forthcoming.

“Private Regulation and Labour Regimes in Indonesia and China” (with Neil M. Coe).  In Labour Regimes and Global Production, ed. by Elena Baglioni, Liam Campling, Neil M. Coe, and Adrian Smith.  Agenda Publishing, forthcoming.