Go Back

Photo of Irene Bloemraad

Irene Bloemraad Political Sociologist

Irene Bloemraad studies the nexus between immigration, politics and national identities. Her 2006 book, Becoming a Citizen, compares immigrants’ acquisition of citizenship and political participation in the United States and Canada, finding that government settlement and multiculturalism policies have influenced newcomers’ practice and understanding of citizenship such that immigrants to Canada show greater political incorporation than those in the United States. Current projects examine the link between immigration-driven diversity and public-minded engagement, the visibility and influence of immigrant organizations, and the political socialization of immigrants and their native-born children. Bloemraad has published on these and related topics in a variety of sociology and immigration journals. She also regularly presents her work to policy-makers, academics and the general public.


“Best Article” award for “Is There a Trade-off…” (with Matthew Wright), Migration and Citizenship section, American Political Science Association, 2013.

American Cultures Innovation in Teaching Prize, University of California, Berkeley, 2013.

Social Sciences Distinguished Teaching Award, College of Letters and Science, University of California, Berkeley, 2012.

Appointed Thomas Garden Barnes Chair of Canadian Studies, University of California, 2012.

Honorable mention for the Thomas & Znaniecki Best Book Award International Migration section, American Sociological Assc., for Becoming a Citizen, 2008.

Relevant Publications

I. Bloemraad, H. Sarabia, A. Fillingim, "Staying out of Trouble? and Doing what is 'Right:' Citizenship Acts, Citizenship Ideals and the Effects of Legal Status on Second-Generation Youth", American Behavioral Scientist 60(13) 1534?1552, 2016.

I. Bloemraad, V. Terriquez, "Cultures of Engagement: The Organizational Foundations of Advancing Health in Low-Income Communities of Color", Social Science and Medicine 165: 214-222, 2016.

I. Bloemraad, I., F. Silva, K. Voss, "Rights, Economics or Family? Frame Resonance, Political Ideology and the Immigrant Rights Movement", Social Forces 94(4): 1647-1674, 2016.

I. Bloemraad and M. Wright, "Utter Failure or Unity out of Diversity? Debating and Evaluating Policies of Multiculturalism," Int. Migr. Rev., vol. 48 (S1), pp. S292-S334, Fall 2014.

I. Bloemraad, "Being American / Becoming American: Birthright Citizenship and Immigrants? Membership in the United States," Studies in Law, Politics and Society, vol. 60, pp. 55-84, 2013.


K. Voss and I. Bloemraad, Eds., Rallying for Immigrant Rights: The Fight for Inclusion in 21st Century America. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2011.

S.K. Ramakrishnan and I. Bloemraad, Eds., Civic Hopes and Political Realities: Immigrants, Community Organizations, and Political Engagement. New York: Russell Sage Foundation Press, 2008.

I. Bloemraad, Becoming a Citizen: Incorporating Immigrants and Refugees in the United States and Canada. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2006.



Senior Fellow Social Interactions, Identity & Well Being

Senior Fellow Successful Societies


University of California, BerkeleyDepartment of Sociology


PhD (Sociology) Harvard University

MA (Sociology) McGill University

BA (Political Science) McGill University


United States

Ideas Related to Irene Bloemraad