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Nan Dirk de Graaf

Official Fellow in Sociology
Professor of Sociology

Research Interests: Social stratification, especially educational attainment and consequences of social mobility, cultural sociology, sociology of religion, pro-social behaviour, and political sociology.

Nan Dirk de Graaf is an Official Fellow at Nuffield College and a Professor in Sociology. He joined Nuffield College in 2007. He obtained his PhD at Utrecht University (1988) and was a post-doc researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Education and Human Development in Berlin (1988-1989). He was a research fellow of the Royal Netherlands Academy (1990-1995) and a full Professor in Sociology (also the chair of the Department) at Nijmegen University (2001-2007) and the chair of the Inter-university Centre for Social Science Theory and Methodology (ICS: 2003-2007).

He published in journals such as the American Journal of Sociology, American Sociological Review, Social Forces, Annual Review of Sociology, European Sociological Review, Comparative Political Studies, European Journal of Political Science and West European Politics.

NEW open access: (with K Gērxhani & W Raub 2022) Handbook of Sociological Science: Contributions to Rigorous Sociology, Edward Elgar Press. Sociology is fragmented. The Handbook of Sociological Science offers a refreshing, integrated perspective on research programs and ongoing developments in sociological science. It highlights key shared theoretical and methodological features, thereby contributing to progress and cumulative growth of sociological knowledge.

Open Access site


Nan Dirk de Graaf



(with Kasimir Dederichs) Gender Segregation in Civic Life: Women's and Men's Involvement in Voluntary Associations. Gender & Society, 37: 942-971, 2023.

(with Anthony Heath), 'From Male Dominance to Sharing: Partner's Class and Female Political Party Identification 1964-2010', European Societies, 2023. Open Access:

(with Klarita Gërxhani and Werner Raub) Handbook of Sociological Science: Contributions to Rigorous Sociology. Edward Elgar, 2022.

(with Fijnanda van Klingeren), Heterogeneity, Trust and Common-Pool Resource Management. Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences, 11: 37-64, 2021. (Open Access:

(with Chaeyoon Lim) Religious Diversity Reconsidered: Local Religious Contexts and Individual Religiosity. Sociology of Religion, 82: 31-62, 2021. doi:10.1093/socrel/sraa027.

(with Jörg Stolz,and Detlef Pollack), Can the State Accelerate the Secular Transition? Secularization in East and West Germany as a Natural Experiment. European Sociological Review, 34: 626-642, 2020.

(with Jörg Stolz, Detlef Pollack and Jean-Philippe Antonietti), Losing My Religion as a Natural Experiment: How State Pressure and Taxes Led to Church Disaffiliations between 1940 and 2010 in Germany. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion. 2020.


(with Dingeman Wiertz), Societal Problems as Public Bads, London and New York: Routledge, 2019.

(with Anthony Heath and Lindsay Richards), 'Explaining Corruption in the Developed World: The Potential of Sociological Approaches', Annual Review of Sociology, 42: 51-79, 2016.

(with Geoffrey Evans), Political Choice Matters: Explaining the strength of class and religious cleavages in cross-national perspective, Oxford University Press, 2013.

(with Stijn Ruiter), 'National Context, Religiosity and Volunteering: Results From 53 Countries', American Sociological Review, 71: 191-210, 2006.

(with Jonathan Kelley), 'National Context, Parental Socialization, and Religious Belief: Results from 15 Countries', American Sociological Review, 62: 639-659, 1997.

(with Paul Nieuwbeerta and Anthony Heath), 'Class Mobility and Political Preferences: Individual and Contextual Effects', American Journal of Sociology, 100: 997-1027, 1995.