Jason Owen-Smith is a sociologist of science and innovation, an award winning teacher and researcher, and an organizational theorist. For eight years, he served as the director of the Barger Leadership Institute at the University of Michigan, a community of students and faculty committed to developing leadership learning through liberal arts education. The institute cultivates diverse experiences that expand beyond the conventional classroom and prepare students for 21st century challenges.
Professor Owen-Smith is currently the executive director of the Institute for Research on Innovation and Science (IRIS). He is also a research professor in the Survey Research Center at the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research, one of the world’s largest academic social science research organizations. There he directs the Innovation Networks and Knowledge (INK) program, which houses IRIS and an ongoing research project in physician networks and surgical care outcomes. His current research focuses on the process of network change in contemporary societies and its effect of policy relevant domains. He received his B.A. in Sociology and Philosophy from the New College of Florida and his M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Sociology at the University of Arizona. He also completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Stanford University.