The Center for the Study of Brooklyn is a hub of Brooklyn-based interdisciplinary research, experiential and community-based learning, and nonprofit internships that advances the understanding of Brooklyn’s critical and cultural issues for the public good.


Faculty affiliates conduct interdisciplinary research on, about, and with Brooklyn. The center serves as a clearinghouse of resources that support Brooklyn-based research, including guides, curated data sets, and original reports. We provide opportunities for students to conduct interdisciplinary research on Brooklyn with Brooklyn College faculty in and out of the classroom, and work with academic departments to coordinate Brooklyn-based nonprofit and community-based internships.

Our Work

Experiential Education

Steering Committee

Affiliate Faculty

Kelly Britt, Anthropology

  • Affiliations—CUNY Graduate Center
  • Research Areas—Urban archaeology, contemporary archaeology
  • Faculty Bio

Professor Britt is currently interested in two areas of research: 1) exploring the intersection of activism and materiality, and 2) heritage management seen both locally and globally. She is currently working with the United Order of Tents Eastern District #3, the oldest Black women’s benevolent society in the United States, whose headquarters in located in a 19th-century mansion in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, and the Flatbush African Burial Ground, to preserve, protect, and honor those once buried there.

Joshua (Zhongqi) Cheng, Earth and Environmental Sciences

  • Research Areas—Urban soils, green infrastructure, urban sustainability
  • Faculty Bio

Miriam Deutch, Library

  • Research Areas—Open educational resources, digital humanities, digital scholarship
  • Faculty Bio

Kenneth Gould, Sociology

  • Affiliations—Urban Sustainability
  • Research Areas—Environmental justice, climate change, sustainable development
  • Faculty Bio

Green Gentrification and the Struggle for Environmental Justice explores the social consequences of urban “greening” from an environmental justice and sustainable development perspective. Through a comparative examination of five cases of urban greening in Brooklyn, it demonstrates that such initiatives tend to increase inequality and thus undermine the social pillar of sustainable development. New project: Problematizing states’ public investments post-disaster: the case of massive public investment in Rockaway Beach post-Hurricane Sandy. (Technically in Queens until we redraw the maps)”

Donna Granville, Sociology

  • Affiliations—Center for Teaching and Learning
  • Research Areas—Race and ethnicity, sociology of hip-hop, Afro-Caribbean immigration to the United States
  • Faculty Bio

Tammy Lewis, Sociology

  • Affiliations – Earth and Environmental Sciences, CUNY Graduate Center
  • Research Areas – Urban Sustainability, Climate Adaptation, Green Gentrification
  • Faculty Bio

Green Gentrification in Brooklyn, Climate Adaptation in Rockaway

Emily Tumpson Molina, Sociology

  • Affiliations—Urban Sustainability, CUNY Graduate Center Quantitative Methods in the Social Sciences program
  • Research Areas—Housing, urban geography, urban policy, critical data analytics
  • Faculty Bio

A People’s Guide to New York City with fellow CUNY professors Carolina Bank Muñoz and Penny Lewis (University of California Press, 2022) and Housing America: Issues and Debates (Routledge, 2017).

Lucas G. Rubin, Graduate Center Worker Education and Classics

  • Affiliations—Assistant Dean for Academic Programs, Director of the Graduate Center for Worker Education, Director of the Latin/Greek Institute
  • Research Areas—Brooklyn sports (especially pre-1898), topography

Timothy Shortell, Sociology

  • Affiliations—Data Analysis and Visualization, CUNY Graduate Center
  • Research Areas—Critical data studies, visual sociology
  • Faculty Bio

Everyday Globalization: A Spatial Semiotics of Immigrant Neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Paris. Routledge, 2016. Visual sociological study of religious, linguistic, and ethnic minorities in urban spaces and how the appearance of neighborhoods contributes to belonging and, in some cases, group conflicts.

Dan Shtob, Sociology and Urban Sustainability

  • Affiliations—Earth and Environmental Sciences, CUNY Graduate Center
  • Research Areas—Environmental sociology, natural hazards
  • Faculty Bio

Malka Simon, Art

  • Affiliations—Center for Teaching and Learning
  • Research Areas—Brooklyn architecture and landscape. Special focus on industrial and vernacular landscapes, and on outer-borough identity as expressed through the built environment.
  • Faculty Bio

Gregory Smithsimon, Sociology

  • Affiliations—CUNY Graduate Center, Science and Resilience Institute at Jamaica Bay
  • Research Areas—Urban sociology, communities, disasters
  • Faculty Bio

Part of an interdisciplinary team studying and mapping rainfall flooding, particularly with basement apartments and businesses in vulnerable areas in New York City.

Brooklyn. All in.