Francisco Vivoni

Associate Professor of Sociology

Professor Vivoni’s academic interests include contemporary urban dynamics, Puerto Rican experiences, everyday struggles over public space and skateboarding as a meaningful social practice.


University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Universidad de Puerto Rico - Recinto de Rio Piedras
Estudios Generales
Skills Urban Sociology, Skateboarding, Qualitative Inquiry, Participatory Action Research


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Global Latin Experiences Faculty Award 2017
Office of Multicultural Affairs, Worcester State University
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Excellence in Teaching and Mentoring Award 2012
AKD, International Honor Society of Sociology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
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The Beslow Graduate Paper Award 2009
Department of Sociology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
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  • Articles
  • Other
Crafting cities for all: Qualitative inquiry of the street and the spatial practice of skateboarding Read More
DIY skateparks as temporary disruptions to neoliberal cities: Informal learning through micropolitical making Read More
Waxing ledges: Built environments, alternative sustainability, and the Chicago skateboarding scene Read More
Spots of spatial desire: Skateparks, skateplazas, and urban politics Read More
Sensorial urbanism and the making of soundscapes: An exploration of sonorous space through skateboarding in the city Read More
City of social control: Skateboarding and the regulation of public space Read More
Postmodernidad, globalización e identidad nacional en Puerto Rico Read More

Service Projects

Downtown Worcester Community Walk

Downtown Worcester Community Walk

With the support of the Latino Education Institute, Professor Vivoni led a community walk with Aspire Community Academy young scholars. During the walk students worked in teams to gather qualitative and quantitative data in order to study access, quality and experience of public spaces in downtown Worcester.


Gentrification in Worcester: From Industrial Powerhouse to Postindustrial Theme Park

Professor Vivoni conducts participatory research of the built environment centered on gentrification in the city of Worcester. Key research questions include: Who is Worcester for? How do neoliberal tropes shape contemporary urban struggles in Worcester? Why should we imagine a more sustainable, inclusive and just city?


SO 100

Introduction to Sociology

The nature of group behavior and social interaction viewed through analysis of structure, norms, and values.
3 credits
SO 228

Latinx Experiences in the US and the World

This course surveys current theoretical approaches used to explain Latinx experiences and provides an empirical overview of how social institutions affect the daily lives of Latinxs in the U.S. and the world.
3 credits
SO 270

Social Theory

Fundamental concepts and intellectual traditions, especially the contributions of Comte, Spencer, Marx, Toennes, Durkheim, and Simmel.
3 credits
SO 280

Research Methods of Sociology

An analysis of the research function in sociology; the conduct of research appropriate to undergraduate students; the formal presentation of research papers.
3 credits
SO 307

Puerto Rican Diaspora

This course surveys a wide range of Puerto Rican experiences and provides an overview of how social structures shape the daily lives of Puerto Ricans in the United States. Through a focus on diasporas, the course centers on migration as a key experience within Puerto Rican imaginaries. The course explores the sociological themes of identity, race, ethnicity, language, gender, sexuality, social class, and stratification through the lens of Puerto Rican struggle and resistance. Puerto Rican diasporic communities are examined at the intersections of colonialism, modernity, and neoliberal globalization.
3 credits
SO 312

Youth, Race, and Public Space

The course studies young people as agents of social change through key debates and local/global case studies across the academic subfields of youth studies, critical race theory, and public space scholarship. Students in this course engage with youth experiences of increased surveillance and regulation in public space as well as creative forms of subversion and resistance. Through the discussion and analysis of cutting-edge scholarship, students in this course craft critical ethnographies at the multiple intersections of youth, race, and public space.
3 credits
SO 360

Urban Sociology

A cross-cultural study of urban social systems and the phenomena and problems connected with the planning process.
3 credits
SO 403

Environmental Sociology

This course explores the relationship between environment and society through a focus on political ecology, sociological dimensions of environmental crisis and dynamics of social change.
3 credits
SO 499

Sociology Capstone

This course is an overview of the discipline of sociology, emphasizing the mastery of the discipline at an undergraduate level.
4 credits