Krista Brumley

Faculty Profile

Associate Professor

Secondary Title

Director of Graduate Studies






2265 Faculty Administration Building



Krista M. Brumley is associate professor of sociology at Wayne State University. She received her PhD in 2004 from Tulane University. Her research focuses on gender, work-family, and work organizations in the U.S. and Mexico. Her current project examines how U.S. workplace conditions impact employee work-family conflict, health and well-being, and career advancement. Her Mexico fieldwork centered on analyzing gendered organizational change post-NAFTA. She also engaged in a case study of non-governmental organizations and political participation in Monterrey, Mexico. She has published on these topics in Gender & Society, Gender, Work and Organizations, the Journal of Family Issues, the Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, and Qualitative Sociology.

Selected Publications

Brumley, Krista M. [forthcoming] "'It's More Appropriate for Men:" Management and worker perceptions of the gendered ideal worker." Sociological Spectrum.

Brumley, Krista M. 2018. "Involved Fathers, Ideal Workers? Fathers' work-family experiences in the U.S." In Fathers, Childcare, and Work: Cultures, Practices, and Policies, Comparative Perspectives in Family Research Volume 12:209-232. UK: Emerald Publishing Ltd..

Brumley, Krista M. 2014. “The gendered ideal worker narrative: Professional women’s and men’s work experiences in the new economy at a Mexican company.” Gender & Society 28(6): 799-823.

Brumley, Krista M. 2014. “‘You care for your work; I’ll care for your family:’ Perceptions of managerial behavior at a Mexican company.” Community, Work & Family. 

Brumley, Krista M. 2014. “Organizational commitment over the gendered life course at a Mexican company.” Sociological Inquiry 84(4):601-625.

Brumley, Krista M. and Jon Shefner. 2014. “Opportunity, context, and action: Understanding the divergent strategies of two Mexican social movement coalitions in a time of tremendous change.” Sociological Spectrum 34:76-98.

Brumley, Krista M. 2014. “‘Now, we have the same rights as men to keep our jobs:’ Gendered perceptions of opportunity and obstacles in a Mexican workplace.” Gender, Work, & Organization 21(3):217-230.

Brumley, Krista M. 2014. ‘It was like a revolution:’ Women’s perceptions of work-family practices at a Mexican multinational corporation.” The Journal of Family Issues 35(6):776-807.

Brumley, Krista M. 2013. “From responsible debtors to citizens: Collective identity in the debtors’ movement in Monterrey, Mexico.” Journal of Contemporary Ethnography 42(2):135-168.

Brumley, Krista M. 2010. “Understanding Mexican NGOs: Goals, strategies, and the local context.” Qualitative Sociology 33:389-414.

Courses taught

Advanced Social Inequality, SOC 8700

Qualitative Methods, SOC 7260

Advanced Sex/Gender, SOC 8720

Introduction to Graduate Studies (proseminar), SOC 7030

Research Methods, SOC 4200

Social Inequality, 3300

Capstone, SOC 4996


Research Description

My research uses qualitative methods to study gender, work, organizations, social movements, and globalization in Mexico. I conducted ethnographic field research at a Mexican multinational company, including in-depth interviews, participant observation, and archival research. My earlier research was an extensive case study of non-governmental organizations and political participation in Monterrey, Mexico. My current research project is a qualitative case study of employees in professional, managerial, and executive level positions who work at major manufacturing multinational companies in the Detroit metro area. This research grows out of my interest on gendered work organizations, particularly as the increasingly unregulated global economy disrupts and complicates everyday life. The study examines the meanings employees’ attach to work and their career, and how they balance this with their family and other responsibilities outside of work.

Affiliated Departments