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Carol A. Heimer

Carol A. Heimer headshot

Research Professor

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Joint appointment

Professor of Sociology, Northwestern University


Ph.D., Sociology, University of Chicago

Curriculum vitae


Carol A. Heimer is Professor of Sociology at Northwestern University and Research Professor at the American Bar Foundation. She received her BA from Reed College and her PhD from the University of Chicago. Heimer has written on risk and insurance (Reactive Risk and Rational Action), organization theory (Organization Theory and Project Management, co-authored with Stinchcombe), the sociology of…

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Research focus

Sociology of law; global and transnational sociology. Research has focused on the relationship between law and other systems of rules and norms; the diffusion of more legalistic forms of governance to healthcare (HIV clinics, infant intensive care units); and the diffusion and adaptation of rules as they flow across boundaries


The Legal Transformation of Medicine: How Rules Work in the International World of HIV/AIDS

This book project braids together investigations of three transformative events - the “legalization” and globalization of medicine and the advent of HIV/AIDS - in a study of how laws,…

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"What Is a Clinic? Relationships and the Practice of Organizational Ethnography"
Sociological Methods and Research
"DRC's Contested Election: Constitutional Coup or Baby Step to Democracy?"
TRT World
Cover of The New Legal Realism: Studying Law Globally The New Legal Realism: Studying Law Globally
Cambridge University Press

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Colonizing the Clinic: The Adventures of Law in HIV Treatment and Research
Apr 2014
Regulatory Wranglers: Lay Theorizing about Context in HIV Clinics
Aug 2013
Aiming for Responsibility; Settling for Accountability
Jun 2013

All presentations »

Professional Service & Recognition

  • Member, Board of Trustees, Law and Society Association
  • Co-Editor, Regulation and Governance
  • Director, Legal Studies Program, Northwestern University
  • Member, Inaugural Editorial Board, Regulation and Governance
  • Member, Editorial Board, Sociological Theory
  • Member, Editorial Committee, book series on “Risk and Regulation,” Centre for Analysis of Risk and Regulation, London School of Economics
  • Member, Special Committee on Bioethics and Law, American Bar Association

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