Ph.D. in Sociology, University of Georgia, 2011
M.A. in Sociology, University of New Orleans, 2005
B.A. in Economics & International Business, 2000
Sociology of Higher Education
State Politics & Policy
Public Understanding of Science
The Academic Profession
David R. Johnson is an associate professor of higher education in the Department of Educational Policy Studies at Georgia State University. His research agenda examines how universities are shaped by changes in their institutional environments, especially as it relates to capitalism, religion and politics.
His earliest work, captured by his book “A Fractured Profession: Commercialism and Conflict in Academic Science” (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2017) considers how neoliberal policy regimes introduced in the 1980s have transformed the nature of scientific work in U.S. universities. A second line of inquiry examines the intersection of science and religion in higher education, exemplified by his co-authored books “Secularity and Science: What Scientists around the World Actually Think” (Oxford University Press, 2019) and “Varieties of Atheism in Science” (Oxford University Press, 2021). Other studies from these dimensions of his agenda appear in journals such as the Journal of Higher Education, Sociological Science, Public Understanding of Science, Social Science Quarterly, and Science, Technology & Human Values. Dr. Johnson’s most recent research — reflected by publications in Educational Researcher and Harvard Educational Review — examines legislative processes related to higher education and science policy.