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Robert M. Fishman

Research interests

Fishman’s published papers, a selection of which appears below, include theoretical analyses—differentiating between states and regimes in democratization and critiquing the concept of social capital—as well as methodological work on the Weberian approach to social science and on the rationale for studying labor movements from the perspective of workplace leaders. Fishman has also published papers on European integration and on sociological determinants of priestly vocations as well as other themes. 

"A tragédia portuguesa faz parte de uma tragédia maior" - an interview with Professor Fishman in Visâo, May 17, 2012

Selected publications


The Year of the Euro: The Cultural, Social and Political Import of Europe’s Common Currency. (Coedited with Anthony Messina). University of Notre Dame Press, 2006.

Democracy’s Voices: Social Ties and the Quality of Public Life in Spain. Cornell University Press, 2004. (Available also in Spanish translation.)

Working-Class Organization and the Return to Democracy in Spain. Cornell University Press, 1990. (Available also in Spanish translation.)

Selected articles, essays and book chapters

"Democratic Practice after the Revolution: The Case of Portugal and Beyond," Politics And Society 39, 2 (June 2011)

“Rethinking the Iberian Transformations: How Democratization Scenarios Shaped Labor Market Outcomes,”Studies in Comparative International Development 45, 3 (Fall 2010).

“On the Costs of Conceptualizing Social Ties as Social Capital”, Chapter three in Viva Bartkus and Jim Davis, eds., Social Capital: Multidisciplinary Perspectives (Edward Elgar Press, 2009).

“Civic Engagement and Church Policy in the Making of Religious Vocations: Cross-National Variation in the Evolution of Priestly Ordinations.” With Keely Jones, Chapter six in Giuseppe Giordan, ed., Vocation and Social Context (Brill Academic Publishers and Association for the Sociology of Religion, 2007).

“Triumphs, Failures and Ambiguities in Democratization: Juan Linz and the Study of Regime Change,” Chapter two in Joan Marcet and José Ramón Montero, eds., Roads to Democracy: A Tribute to Juan J. Linz (Institut de Ciències Polítiques I Socials, Barcelona, 2007).

“On Being a Weberian (After Spain’s March 11–14): Notes on the Continuing Relevance of Weber’s Methodological Approach,” Chapter eleven in Laurence McFalls, ed., Max Weber’s “Objectivity” Revisited (University of Toronto Press, 2007).

“On the Significance of Public Protest: Puzzles and Challenges of Spanish Politics (Along with some explanations),” in Newsletter of Iberian Politics 2, 1 (Summer 2007). (Publication of Iberian Politics Group, APSA).

“Shaping, Not Making Democracy: The European Union and the Post-authoritarian Political Transformation of Spain and Portugal,” in South European Society and Politics 8, 1-2 (2003).
Also in: Sebastian Royo and Paul Manuel, eds., From Isolation to Integration: Fifteen Years of Spanish and Portuguese Membership in Europe, (Frank Cass, 2003).

“Workplace Leaders and Labour Organisation: Limits on the Mobilisation and Representation of Workers,” coauthored with Carol Mershon, in International Contributions to Labour Studies 3 (1993).

“Rethinking State and Regime: Southern Europe’s Transition to Democracy” in World Politics 42, 3 (April 1990).




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