Guzzo honored for robust record of research, publishing

Dr. Karen Guzzo, sociology, received the 2017 Olscamp Research Award. Given annually by the Office of Sponsored Programs and Research to a faculty member for outstanding scholarly or creative accomplishments during the previous three years, the award includes a $2,000 cash prize and a reserved parking spot for a year. She received the award at the Faculty Excellence Awards on April 13.

Guzzo’s research productivity during the past three years is truly outstanding, said her nominators. Her leadership and national recognition in the sociology field only has grown through her impressive achievements during this period, including numerous high-quality publications as well as a federal grant award from the National Institutes of Health totaling more than $1 million.

Her BGSU nominators, Drs. Susan Brown and Wending Manning, sociology, and Dr. Jennifer Barber of the University of Michigan and Dr. Marcia Colson of the University of Wisconsin, echoed strong support for her significant work.

“Dr. Guzzo’s publication record is outstanding and surpasses the best in our field,” Brown and Manning said. “Typically, productive faculty in our discipline publish two or three articles per year. In the last three years, Dr. Guzzo has 16 published, averaging over five per year.”

“Dr. Guzzo has worked on several important topics in demography, but one of the most visible, interesting and important has been her research on stepfamilies,” Barber said.

“Karen’s research has covered a variety of topics in the field of family demography, especially related to aspects of fertility and family formation,” Colson said. “Her work on multipartnered fertility has been particularly influential – both for its analytic rigor and conceptual clarity.”

Guzzo is nationally recognized as one of the best scholars in the area of fertility. She addresses key questions about the patterns and motivations for nonmarital childbearing and multiple partner fertility (having children with more than one partner across the life course).

Her scholarly impact is evidenced by her high citation count. According to Google Scholar, her work has been cited more than 1,000 times. Her invited article for the Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science published in 2014 is still more evidence of her national reputation. This issue of the Annals emerged from a national conference held at the University of Wisconsin on families, poverty and public policy. She is on the cutting edge of conceptualizing and measuring family complexity — an emerging phenomenon affecting a growing share of families and children.

This work, along with her research on unintended fertility, stepfamilies and cohabitation is moving forward our understanding of contemporary family life, her nominators said. Guzzo’s expertise in these domains not only benefits the field of family demography but also is advantageous for BGSU graduate students as she collaborates and publishes with several graduate students at the University and other institutions, as well as postdoctoral fellows and junior faculty. She is eager to work with students on their research to build their own scholarly records and she regularly serves as the chair or a member of thesis and dissertation committees.

The tremendous scientific impact of Guzzo’s research is evidenced by her successful grantsmanship. In 2014, she was awarded a five-year R01 grant from the National Institutes of Health with total project costs exceeding $1.1 million. She is the principal investigator on this multi-site award that includes co-investigators at the Ohio State University and the University of Michigan.

The reviews of her research make it clear that Guzzo is an eminent scholar who is conducting research of the highest caliber, noted Brown and Manning. In addition to her exceptional research record, Guzzo is a leader in service to the discipline and at BGSU. At the national level, she has been elected to serve on the board of the National Council on Family Relations (NCFR), the premier national organization for family scholars that includes sociologists, demographers, human developmentalists and psychologists.

Her excellent reputation is reflected in her current service on the editorial boards for the Journal of Marriage and Family and Journal of Family Theory and Review, both of which are flagship journals for the NCFR. Her service contributions have gone a long way elevate the research environment at BGSU.

Updated: 02/24/2020 10:23AM