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Development Starts With Us.

The Department of Development Sociology at Cornell University is a global leader in purpose-driven social science. Our professors, researchers, and outreach specialists are committed to improving communities in New York State and around the world. We educate the next generation of change-makers and conduct research on diverse aspects of development, including governance, population dynamics, environmental change, and food systems.

Our undergraduate program and MS/PhD graduate program offer interdisciplinary and transformative educational experiences. We provide close mentorship and opportunities for active, engaged and experiential learning for the next generation of change-makers and cutting-edge researchers.


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Blog: Rural Schools & Indiana’s School Tax Levy Referendum

Jul 9, 2019

As part of the Polson Institute's Visiting Faculty Program course in 2019, students wrote blog pieces using key frameworks in research on inclusive rural development to analyze case studies of interest. In this piece, Kristie LeBeau reflects on the system of School Tax Levy Refendums used to support faltering rural schools.

Farmworker initiatives earn community engagement honor

Jul 8, 2019

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation has named Cornell University the winner of the 2019 Northeast Region Community Engagement Scholarship Award. Given by the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU), the award recognizes extraordinary community outreach initiatives by its member universities.