Mark Warren is a sociologist concerned with the revitalization of American democratic and community life. An associate professor in the Department of Public Policy and Public Affairs in the McCormack Graduate School at the University of Massachusetts Boston, Mark studies efforts to strengthen institutions that anchor inner-city communities‚ÄĒchurches, schools, and other community-based organizations‚ÄĒand to build broad-based alliances among these institutions and across race and social class. Mark is a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellow for 2015-16. He is currently serving as the¬†College Board Fellow to Advance Educational Excellence for Young Men of Color at the W.E.B DuBois Research Institute at Harvard University. Mark teaches classes on community organizing for education reform, public policy and social justice, and on collaborative research methods; he is committed to using the results of scholarly research to advance democratic practice and social justice.

On this site you will be able to learn more about Mark Warren, including his teaching, scholarship, and other professional projects that he has been working on both locally and nationally. Please take a look around.

Download Mark’s¬†latest article for free:

From Private Citizens to Public Actors: The Development of Parent Leaders Through Community Organizing


Practitioners and scholars join hands to share promising practices and research‚Äźbased examples of community initiatives that have had positive impacts on families, schools, and communities. Educators are coming to recognize the need to move beyond traditional forms of parent involvement toward meaningful engagement of families in the life of schools. In these models, parents are not only supporters of their own child‚Äôs learning ‚ÄĒ as important as that is ‚ÄĒ but also advocates and decision makers at the school and district level. Some educators, for instance, have called for the development of ‚Äúdemand parents‚ÄĚ ‚ÄĒ parents who are capable of advocating for their own child, as well as other children in the school. Demand parents support their own child, while also demanding systemic improvements and holding schools accountable for change.

Access a free pre-publication copy at this link.

Look for Mark’s newest book:

A Match on Dry Grass: Community Organizing as a Catalyst for School Reform

In¬† A Match on Dry Grass, Mark and his colleagues argue that community organizing represents a fresh and promising approach to school reform as part of a broader agenda to build power for low-income communities and address the profound social inequalities that affect the education of children. Based on a comprehensive national study, the book presents rich and compelling case studies of prominent organizing efforts in Chicago, New York City, Los Angeles, Denver, San Jose, and the Mississippi Delta. The authors show how organizing groups build the participation and leadership of parents and students so they can become powerful actors in school improvement efforts. They also identify promising ways to overcome divisions and create the collaborations between educators and community residents required for deep and sustainable school reform. Identifying the key processes that create strong connections between schools and communities, Warren, Mapp, and their collaborators show how community organizing builds powerful relationships that lead to the transformational change necessary to advance educational equity and a robust democracy. Click here to visit the book’s website.

Mark’s book on racial justice activism

In his book, Fire in the Heart: How White Activists Embrace Racial Justice, Mark Warren shows how white Americans can develop a commitment to racial justice, not just because it is the right thing to do, but because they embrace the cause as their own. Based on in-depth interviews with 50 white activists from across the country, Mark brings to light the perspectives of white people who are working day-to-day to build not a post-racial America but the foundations for a truly multiracial America rooted in a caring, human community with equity and justice at its core. Click Here to visit the book’s website.


“Fire in the Heart is a one-of-a-kind look at the motivations, tribulations, and contributions of white allies in the racial justice struggle. It brings to life the human dimension of social activism, and the voices of the activists included herein by Mark Warren are a true inspiration!”

‚ÄĒ Tim Wise, author of White Like Me: Reflections on Race from a Privileged Son