Sara Nephew Hassani

Sociology, PhD candidate

Graduate Associate

Sara Nephew Hassani is a PhD candidate in the Sociology Department at Princeton University and a 2008 Exchange Scholar at Stanford University. She graduated from UC Berkeley in 2002 with a BA in Sociology and a minor in Public Policy. Her interests include the sociology of law, economic sociology, sociology of disaster, and sociology of communications and information technologies.

Sara's dissertation is about private property insurance claims following natural disaster. Specifically, she is analyzing long term community recovery from the 2003 California wildfires (Cedar, Paradise, and Otay fires) and the 2007 California wildfires (Witch, Harris, and Rice fires) in the San Diego area. She asks: how are property insurance claims made and paid? How is the value of lost property established? What does the experience of a policyholder – who is also a survivor of disaster – involve? How do insurance companies, through the claims adjusters they employ, decide what and when to pay?

Sara's other research interest is in how law and other institutions shape the development of new information technologies. Her article on the digital divide, "Locating Digital Divides at Home, Work, and Everywhere Else" appeared in Poetics: Journal of Empirical Research on Culture, the Media, and the Arts . In 2006, it won the Best Student Paper award from the Communication and Information Technologies Section of the American Sociological Association (CITASA).

Publications: 

"Locating Digital Divides at Home, Work, and Everywhere Else," 34 Poetics: Journal of Empirical Research on Culture, the Media, and the Arts 250 (2006).