Ryan Hagen

Ryan Hagen


4. The Constant Metropolis: Disaster Risk Managers and the Production of Stability in New York City.


Ryan Hagen is an organizational and comparative historical sociologist studying risk and social change. His research examines how actors construct perceptions of the future, how those perceptions shape actions in the present, and how this work of anticipation influences macro-level social change. His dissertation is a study of risk construction and the institutional production of stability in a Global City. The project is based on extensive ethnographic fieldwork among disaster risk managers in New York City as they planned for hurricanes, cyber-attacks, disease pandemics and nuclear terrorism, among other future dangers. In earlier, historical work he investigated the conditions under which agents of the state alternately encouraged, accommodated, or intervened in lynch mob violence in the post-Reconstruction U.S. South. In the fall of 2019, having successfully defended his dissertation, he will join Columbia's Sociology department as a Postdoctoral Fellow.


  • PhD Sociology, Columbia University, August 2019
  • M.Phil Sociology, Columbia University, May 2014
  • MA Sociology, Columbia University, May 2011
  • BA English & American Literature/Political Science, New York University, May 2005


  • Masters Thesis Seminar
  • Mistake, Misconduct and Disaster
  • How Organizations Fail
  • The Social World
  • Media, Culture, and Society
  • Economy and Society