I received both my Master’s (2002) and PhD (2007) in sociology from the University of Delaware. My broad research agenda involves the intersection of the sociology of risk and health. Currently, I am focusing on protest health movements, citizen science, and disease clusters.
Recent Selected Publications
2010.“The Rhetoric of Science and Statistics in Claims of an Autism Epidemic.” Pp. 203-221 in Advances in Medical Sociology, vol. 11, Understanding Emerging Epidemics: Social and Political Approaches, edited by Ananya Mukherjea. United Kingdom: Emerald Group Publishing.
From the chapter: “…some of the most heated rhetorical action takes place concerning scientific proof that medical interventions in children can lead to what has been referred to as vaccine-induced autism or vaccine-injury. At this focal point, the actual idea of scientific inquiry and scientific evidence is at the center of the debate, where major principles of the scientific method are being used to challenge one another’s findings and alternative sources of evidence are being espoused…From critiquing published articles’ research methodology, sample sizes, data sources, and conflicts of interest of scientists/authors, as well as emphasizing the importance of peer-review and the scientific credentials of researchers, most fundamental aspects of the scientific method are being used by more or less two camps to challenge each other: those that posit some causal link between medical interventions and ASD, and those that do not…There are few in the public sphere who are situated in a moderate stance about the state of the knowledge concerning the etiology of ASD.”
2010. (Book Review) Conceiving Risk, Bearing Responsibility: Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and the Diagnosis of Moral Disorder, by Elizabeth M. Armstrong (2003). Social Problems Forum: The SSSP Newsletter 41(1):14-17.
From the review: “…it is immoral to not pursue behaviors that will contribute to health; that is, decrease the risk of ill health and disease. Behaving in ways that can contribute to adverse outcomes in pregnancy is especially problematic, as it affects the woman, her unborn child, and has the potential to negatively burden society…health behavior inextricably is moral behavior, and health behavior to lower risk is a moral responsibility.”
2005. “The Relationship Between Seriously Considering, Planning, and Attempting Suicide in the Youth Risk Behavior Survey.” Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior 35(1):35-49.
From the article: “The assumed ordinal relationship between seriously considering, planning, and attempting suicide in the 1999 Youth Risk Behavior Survey was examined by constructing a trajectory that identified all possible response patterns among the four questions measuring suicidal activity…Overall, the trajectory provided insight to the progression of adolescent suicidal activity and demonstrated usefulness as a measure of suicidal intent.”
Recent Selected Presentations
2011. Perez, Victor W. and Joel Best. “Statistics, Uncertainty, and the News Media Construction of Cancer Clusters in Delaware.” Annual meeting of the Society for the Study of Social Problems, Las Vegas, NV.
2010. Perez, Victor W. and Ray J. Maratea. “Social Movement Formation in Cyberspace: The Online Network of the Autism Collaboration.” Annual meeting of the Eastern Sociological Society, Boston, MA.
2009. Perez, Victor W. and Ray J. Maratea. “How Individual Web Spaces Create a Social Movement: Mapping the Network of the Autism Blogosphere.” Annual meeting of the Society for the Study of Social Problems, San Francisco, CA.
2009. “Stability of Correlates of Suicidal Thought and Behavior in the Youth Risk Behavior Survey.” Annual meeting of the Eastern Sociological Society, Baltimore, MD.
2008. “The Implications of Medicalization and Risk for the Prevention Movement in the Social Sciences.” Annual meeting of the Eastern Sociological Society, New York, NY.
2007. “Perceived Risk of Harm and Disapproval as Mechanisms of Social Control in Youth Marijuana Use.” Annual meeting of the American Sociological Association, New York, NY.