Heidi Gottfried

Heidi Gottfried

Associate Professor


313-577-2735 (fax)


Curriculum vitae

Heidi Gottfried



Heidi Gottfried received her Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 1987. Her research interests span areas, ranging from sociology of work, the care economy, sociology of gender, welfare state, feminist theory, labor movements, to comparative political economy. She has co-edited numerous special issues and books on gender, work, and the economy, including the Handbook on the Sociology of Work and Employment (Sage, 2015), Gendering the Knowledge Economy: Comparative Perspectives (2007), and most recently, Care Work in Transition: Transnational Circuits of Gender, Migration and Care, a special issue of Critical Sociology (with Jennifer Jihye Chun). Her monograph Gender, Work and Economy: Unpacking the Global Economy (Polity Press, 2013) chronicles the changing patterns of gender and work across industrialized countries, old and emerging global cities, both in the global North and South. Generous research support from the Social Science Research Council-Abe Fellowship and the Center for Global Partnership of The Japan Foundation culminated in her monograph, The Reproductive Bargain: Deciphering the Enigma of Japanese Capitalism (Brill, 2015). Partnering with Anne Zacharias-Walsh and Kazuko Tanaka, she developed a two-year grassroots exchange program that produced bi-lateral solidarity networks among Japanese working women’s organizations and their counterparts in the US.

Her published articles and chapters have appeared in The Oxford Handbook of Employment Relations, Social Theory at Work, Sociology, The British Journal of Sociology, and Work, Employment and Society. She has received numerous research grants, presented her research world-wide, and held a variety of guest professorships at the Institute of Social Theory and Dynamics, Hiroshima; International Christian University, Tokyo; Hamburg University; In-East, Uni-Duisburg-Essen; Maria Jahoda Feminist Guest Professor, University of Bochum; Ochanomizu University, Tokyo; Shanghai University, the Australia National University; the Swedish Institute for Work Life Research; and the Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin fur Sozialforschung. As a founding member and co-convener of the international feminist working group on Gender, Globalization and Work Transformation (GLOW), she fostered a network of scholars publishing several monographs, special journal issues, and books on comparative care work, gender regimes and welfare states.

Another initiative began several years ago launching and serving on the International Advisory Board of the Global Labor Migration Network based at the University of Maryland. The Global Labor Migration Network’s first major project organizing a summit “Global Labor Migration: Past and Present, 20-22, June 2019, was attended by over two hundred leading scholars and labor activists from around the world. That inaugural summit was held in Amsterdam at, and co-sponsored by, the International Institute of Social History. It is part of the ongoing work of the Global Labor Migration Network organizing the renewed and energetic attention to labor migration scholarship and research in sociology, anthropology, law, history, public health, education, and public policy. A second summit initiative already received a funding award of 44,000 Euro ($50,000) from the Swiss-based World Society Foundation. This summit has been postponed due to the pandemic, with a date to be announced. I am co-editing with Eileen Boris, Julie Greene and Joo-Cheong Tham, Global Labor Migration, under contract with the University of Illinois Press directs attention to one of the world’s most pressing issues, generates scholarly dialogue, and proposes new research agendas and methodologies. The book advances the study of labor migration not only through multidisciplinary perspectives but also through a more expansive field of study. Despite a proliferation of interest in migration studies, much of the literature and debates are confined to disciplinary silos or focus on a single sector (e.g., care, agriculture, construction). By thinking beyond disciplinary boundaries, with sociologists, legal scholars, and historians as contributors, the chapters simultaneously reflect on the contemporary nature of labor migration as well as its historical roots.


  • Ph.D . Sociology (December 1987) University of Wisconsin, Madison,
  • MA Sociology (August 1983) University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  • BA (with distinction) (May 1979) University of Michigan, Ann Arbor,

Selected publications

Global Labor Migration: New Directions, edited by Eileen Boris, Heidi Gottfried, Julie Greene, and Joo-Cheong Tham, University of Illinois Press, under contract.

Handbook on the Sociology of Work and Employment, edited by Stephen Edgell, Heidi Gottfried and Edward Granter. Sage, 2015.

The Reproductive Bargain: Deciphering the Enigma of Japanese Capitalism, Leiden: Brill, 2015. (paperback edition, Haymarket, 2016).

Gender, Work and Economy: Unpacking the Global Economy, Cambridge: Polity Press, 2013.

“Historical and Contemporary Perspectives on Global Labor Migration, Global Labor Migration: New Directions, edited by Eileen Boris, Heidi Gottfried, Julie Greene, and Joo-Cheong Tham. University of Illinois Press, forthcoming.

“Convergence and Divergence in Public Gender Regimes — Germany and Japan in National and World Regional Comparison,” (with Karen Shire), Geschlechterungleichheiten in Arbeit, Familie und Wohlfahrtsstaat, edited by Irene Dingeldey. Vienna: Campus Verlag, 2021.

“Precariousness in Japan: After the ‘Lost Decade’” in The Crisis of Global Youth Unemployment, edited by Tamar Meyer, Jamie McCullum, Sujata Moori. Routledge, 2018.

“Understanding Japanese Capitalism,” (with David Fasenfest) Special Issue on Japanese Capitalism in Critical Sociology, January 2021 Vol. 47, 1: 149-161.

“Caring Across Borders: The transformation of Care and Care Work.” (with Jennifer Jihye Chun). Global Dialogue, 8:2, August 2018 (online journal)

“Care work in Transition: Transnational Circuits of Migration, Gender, and Care,” (with Jennifer Jihye Chun) Special Issue on Care work in Critical Sociology, November 2018 Vol. 44, 7-8: 997-1012.

“The Phoenix Rises: The Origins of Tokyo as a Global City,” Special Issue on Urban Developmentalism in Critical Sociology, 43, 3, 2018: 421-435.

“Re-regulating Breadwinner Models in Socially Conservative Welfare Regimes: Comparing Germany and Japan,” (with Jacqueline O’Reilly) Social Politics, vol. 9, no. 1 (Spring 2002): 29-59.

"Compromising Positions: Emergent Neo-Fordisms and Embedded Gender Contracts," The British Journal of Sociology 51, 2 June 2000: 235-259.

“Beyond Patriarchy? Theorising Gender and Class,” Sociology: Journal of the British Sociological Association, 32, 3, August 1998:451-468.


Currently teaching

  •  Sociology 4402 Global Inequality

    Sociology 1020 Social Problems


Courses taught

Sociology 8270 Seminar on Gender

Sociology 7100/5100 Speical topics Globalization, Gender and Work

Sociology 4960 Women in Society

Sociology 2300 Social Inequality