My research has focused on 'grounding globalization' by investigating the local foundations, consequences and politics of a globalizing political economy. Most of my research has been on the political economy of high technology regions, particularly in Ireland, and on the state and workplace politics of such regional economies.

After finishing college in 1985, I received a Masters of Education in Teaching and Curriculum and worked for a half-dozen years in urban public education. In 1992, I entered the graduate program in Sociology at Berkeley with the intention of developing the analytic skills necessary to engage in policy debates around education. I completed my degree in 1996 as a result of the mentorship provided by faculty in the Department, particularly the efforts of Neil Fligstein and Mike Hout.

Some have written of their graduate student lives studying sociology at U.C. Berkeley as years of privileged contact with esteemed professors, and others have written of a time of alienation. For me, graduate life at Berkeley came as an enjoyable escape into another world after working as an attorney in Washington D.C..