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College of Arts and Sciences

Faculty and Staff

Matthew Brashears

Title: Associate Professor
Department: Sociology
College of Arts and Sciences
Phone: 803-777-3123
Resources: Curriculum Vitae [pdf]
Department of Sociology


Dr. Brashears earned his Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Arizona in 2008. He is primarily interested in social networks, with particular emphasis on the connections between networks and social psychology. His current research focuses on linking cognition to social network structure and studying the effects of error and error correction on diffusion dynamics. How do our cognitive assets and limitations shape our social network structures? How does innovation emerge from conformity? He uses a variety of experimental, quasi-experimental, and non-experimental methods to investigate these issues both with student populations and representative samples of larger groups. Dr. Brashears is also interested in covert social networks, and the use of ecological models to connect individual behavior to collective dynamics. His research has been supported by the National Science Foundation, the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, and the Army Research Office, and has appeared in Nature Scientific Reports, the American Sociological Review, Social Networks, Sociological Science, and Social Psychology Quarterly. He currently serves on the editorial board for Social Psychology Quarterly.