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Painting by Paul Gaugin

Jill Doerner

Jill Doerner


Associate Professor


Ph.D., Bowling Green State University

Criminal Justice, Inequality, Juvenile Justice, Research Methods

Curriculum Vitae

Professor Doerner received her M.A. and Ph.D. in Sociology from Bowling Green State University where she specialized in crime and deviance, criminal justice, and family sociology, and her B.S.B.A. in International Business and Economics from Ohio Northern University. She has been at URI since 2008.

Her main research interests focus on differential sentencing outcomes in the criminal justice system, examining disparities across gender, race/ethnicity and age. Her most recent research focuses on the sentencing outcomes of older prisoners and more broadly the consequences of incarceration on the aging prison population. Specifically, she is interested in focusing on issues of safety, social support, health and mental well-being, along with differential sentencing among this population. Her research can be found in Justice Quarterly, Women & Criminal Justice, Journal of Crime & Justice, and Criminal Justice Policy Review.

Professor Doerner regularly teaches courses such as SOC/PSC 274 Criminal Justice System, SOC/PSC 274H -Honors Section of Criminal Justice System, SOC 301 Sociological Research Methods, SOC 332 Juvenile Justice, and SOC/PSC 476 Policy Issues in Criminal Justice. She also serves as the Academic Advisor for Sociology, Anthropology and Political Science during URI's Freshman Orientation.

News & Announcements


Donna Hughes, Carlson Professor of Gender and Women's Studies has accepted a joint appointment as Professor of Sociology. Professor Hughes is a leading international researcher on human trafficking. She has completed research on the trafficking of women and girls for sexual exploitation in the United States, Russia, Ukraine, and Korea and also does research and writing on women's rights.


Dr. Pravin Patkar, a Fulbright Scholar from India will be in residence in Sociology and Anthropology during the 2015-16 academic year. The founder of Prerana, a center for women and children in Kamathipura - the largest red-light district in the world -- he written extensively on the topic of human trafficking. He has worked with victims of bonded labor (modern-day slavery) and prostitution and sex trafficking, and is an advocate for laws and policy that protect victims and hold perpetrators accountable. Dr. Patkar will be doing research and co-teaching courses with Professor Donna Hughes.


Julie Keller Julie C. Keller has joined the department as an Assistant Professor of Sociology. She received her PhD in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2013. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Environmental Sciences from the University of California, Berkeley. Before coming to URI, Professor Keller was a Visiting Assistant Professor and Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at Oberlin College.


Rosaria Pisa has been appointed director of the Gender and Women's Studies program. Professor Pisa has conducted in-depth fieldwork in rural and urban Mexico since 1993. Her research has evolved from studying the impact of the privatization of communal land on community life to her current focus on the gender dynamics of local and organic farming.


URI Anthropology & History student, Morgan Breene, earns prestigious international award to continue her studies of underwater archaeological sites. For full article click here



For the second year in a row, an anthropologist has been awarded the University’s Early Career Research Award.

Associate Professor Holly Dunsworth received the 2014 award for her research comparing energy use in apes and other mammals with particular reference to how the energetics and metabolic parameters of pregnancy, fetal growth, infant growth, and lactation and how those determine the timing of birth in humans and other mammals. Kudos to Holly!!!

Department contacts

Department Chair
Leo Carroll,

Justice, Law & Society Minor Coordinator
Professor Leo Carroll,

Administrative Assistant
Theresa Nobile,