Christie D. Batson, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Sociology

Biography

Christie D. Batson specializes in urban and social demography, immigration and immigrant adaptation, and intermarriage.  Most recently, she has been examining neighborhood quality of life issues in Southern Nevada and effects of the housing foreclosure crisis on community quality of life.  She was a 2015 recipient of the UNLV Faculty Opportunity Award to study Community Engagement, Collective Efficacy, and Neighborhood Attachment in historic West Las Vegas.  Her work from this project is forthcoming.  She works collaboratively with several community partners including the Southern Nevada Regional Housing Authority, Henderson Strong and Southern Nevada Strong, and the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department.  Her research on Las Vegas neighborhoods has been published in Urban Affairs Review, Sociological Perspectives, and the Journal of Environment and Planning.

Her research has also examined the immigrant adaptation of adults and children in the United States using the New Immigrant Survey and the National Survey of Family Growth. She has explored immigrant adaptation and occupational mobility patterns of immigrant women in Las Vegas. Dr. Batson has specialized in studying racial and ethnic intermarriage patterns in the United States. Her research on immigrant adaptation and intermarriage has been published in Demography, Hispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences, and Journal of Marriage and Family.  

Since joining the faculty at UNLV, she has obtained nearly $500,000 in external funding. Dr. Batson is the Co-Principal investigator of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Area Social Survey (LVMASS) and the Smart Policing Initiative project funded by the Department of Justice.  Both of those funded projects used neighborhood-based methods to examine important quality of life issues among residents in Las Vegas, including neighborhood satisfaction, sense of belonging, environmental concerns, crime and safety. 

Dr. Batson currently serves on the UNLV Institutional Review Board for Social and Behavioral Sciences.

Current Research Projects

  • Community Attachment and Quality of Life in historic West Las Vegas
    This project is an in-depth mixed-methods research study examining community quality of life and neighborhood attachment in one of Las Vegas’ most historic neighborhoods, the Westside.  In the early 1900’s, the study site was “west” of the Las Vegas railroad and became a segregated community in the 1930’s  following White flight and discriminatory urban policies.  The area became a cultural and housing hub for African Americans and still remains the largest community of African American residents in Las Vegas. The project investigates questions about community attachment, social interaction among neighbors, community problem solving, neighborhood safety, housing and food accessibility, and community relationships between residents and the police.
  • Las Vegas Metropolitan Area Social Survey (LVMASS)
    The primary purpose of this project is to identify the socio-spatial distribution of attitudes and attributes relevant to urban sustainability in the Las Vegas metropolitan area. The project includes an initial wave of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Area Social Survey (LVMASS) to assess how Las Vegas residents think about their urban sustainability across three dimensions: 1) community and quality of life; 2) the natural environment; 3) urban economic development.
  • Smart Policing Initiative: Police Innovation
    This research is funded by the Department of Justice, in partnership with Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department. The highly competitive two-year award (2011-2013) of $400,000 involves three sources of data collection, including a rigorous experimental design of police saturation teams in 24 high-crime areas of Las Vegas. The project also includes a widespread residential survey (an anchor survey of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Area Social Survey) of residents living in project areas. And finally, the project is utilizing observation fieldwork from police ride-alongs in project areas.