The University of Massachusetts Amherst


Ofer Sharone

Associate Professor

Ofer’s research focuses on career transitions, work and and unemployment. His studies are primarily cross-national comparisons and utilize in-depth interviews and participant observations.

His recently published book entitled Flawed System/Flawed Self: Job Searching and Unemployment Experiences (University of Chicago Press) compares the job searching and unemployment experiences of white-collar workers in Israel and the United States. This book won the Zelizer Award in Economic Sociology and the Weber Award in Organizations, Occupation, Work (OOW). His current research with the Institute for Career Transitions focuses on strategies for supporting long term unemployed job seekers. This research has received wide attention from national media and led to an invitation from the White House and the Department of Labor to participate in policy discussions on addressing long-term unemployment. Ofer’s teaching interests include the sociology of work and culture, American society, negotiations, and social theory.


Ofer holds a B.A. in Economics from the University of Illinois; a J.D. from Harvard Law School; and a Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of California, Berkeley.

Research areas

Sociology of work; Economic Sociology; American Society; Social Theory; Qualitative methodology

Selected publications:

Flawed System/Flawed Self: Job Searching and Unemployment Experiences.  University of Chicago Press.

“LinkedIn or LinkedOut? How Social Networking Sites are Reshaping the Labor Market.” Research in the Sociology of Work

“Sociology as a Strategy of Support for Long- Term Unemployed Workers.”  The American  Sociologist

“Social Capital Activation and Job Searching: Embedding the Use of Weak Ties in the American Institutional Context.” Work and Occupations.

“Why Do Unemployed Americans Blame Themselves While Israelis Blame the System?” Social Forces.

“Constructing Unemployed Job Seekers as Professional Workers: The Depoliticizing Work-Game of Job Searching.” Qualitative Sociology.