Alejandro Portes

Research Professor and Distinguished Scholar of Arts and Sciences

Ph.D. 1970, University of Wisconsin, Madison
M.A. 1967, University of Wisconsin, Madison
B.A. 1965, Creighton University 
Catholic University of Argentina, Buenos Aires, 1963
University of Havana, 1960

Phone: 305-284-3215
Office: G267

Before joining the University of Miami School of Law, Alejandro Portes was the Howard Harrison and Gabrielle Snyder Beck Professor of Sociology and director of the Center for Migration and Development at Princeton University. He has formerly taught at Johns Hopkins University, where he held the John Dewey Chair in Arts and Sciences; Duke University, and the University of Texas-Austin. In 1997, he was elected president of the American Sociological Association and served in that capacity in 1998-99. Born in Havana, Cuba, he came to the United States in 1960. He was educated at the University of Havana, Catholic University of Argentina, and Creighton University. He received his M. A. and Ph. D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Portes is the author of 250 articles and chapters on national development, international migration, Latin American and Caribbean urbanization, and economic sociology. He has published 30 books and special issues. His books include City on the Edge – the Transformation of Miami (California 1993), co-authored with Alex Stepick and winner of the Robert Park Award for best book in urban sociology and the Anthony Leeds Award for best book in urban anthropology in 1995; and Immigrant America: A Portrait, 3rd edition, (California 2006), designated as a Centennial Publication by the University of California Press in 1996.

His current research is on the adaptation process of the immigrant second generation in comparative perspective, the role of institutions on national development, and immigration and the American health system. In 2001, he published, with Rubén G. Rumbaut, Legacies: The Story of the Immigrant Second Generation and Ethnicities: Children of Immigrants in America (California 2001).

Legacies is the winner of the 2002 Distinguished Scholarship Award from the American Sociological Association and of the 2002 W. I. Thomas and Florian Znaniecki Award for best book from the International Migration Section of ASA. Five volumes of his collected essays have been published in English, Spanish, and Portuguese. His most recent articles have appeared in the American Sociological ReviewAnnals of the American Academy of Political and Social SciencesInternational Migration Review, and Population and Development Review.

Portes is a former fellow of the Center for Advanced Studies in the Behavioral Sciences and of the Russell Sage Foundation. He has received honorary doctorates from the New School for Social Research, the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and the University of Genoa (Italy). He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a member of the National Academy of Sciences. In 2008, he received the annual Award for Scientific Reviewing (Social and Politcal Sciences) from the National Academy of Sciences. In 2009, he was elected to the American Philosophical Society and, in 2010; he received the W.E.B. DuBois Career of Distinguished Scholarship Award from the American Sociological Association. At Miami Law he is teaching Immigration, Ethnicity & Public Policy.


(with Adrienne Celaya). “Modernization for Emigration: Determinants and Consequences of the Brain Drain”. DAEDALUS 142 (Summer, 2013): 14.

(with Jessica Yiu). “Entrepreneurship, Transnationalism, and Development”. JOURNAL OF MIGRATION STUDIES 1: 75-95 (2013).

(with Erik Vickstrom, William Haller, and Rosa Aparicio). “Dreaming in Spain: Parental Determinants of Immigrant Children’s Ambition”. ETHNIC AND RACIAL STUDIES. 36 (2013): 557-589.

(with Patricia Fernandez-Kelly). HEALTHCARE AND IMMIGRATION: UNDERSTANDING THE CONNECTIONS. New York and London: Routledge: 2013.

(with Cesar Rodriguez). LAS INSTITUCIONES EN COLOMBIA: UN ANALISIS SOCIOLOGICO, Bogota, University of the Andes Press: 2012.

2012 (with Min Zhou). “Transnationalism and Development: Mexican and Chinese Immigrant Organizations in the United States”. POPULATION AND DEVELOPMENT REVIEW 38 (2012): 191-220.

(with Lorenzo Cachon). SOCIOLOGIA ECONOMICA DE LAS MIGRACIONES INTERNACIONALES, Barcelona: Anthropos Editores: 2012.

(with Patricia Fernandez-Kelly). HEALTHCARE AND IMMIGRATION: UNDERSTANDING THE CONNECTIONS. Oxford, U.K.: Routledge: 2012.

(with Lori D. Smith). INSTITUTIONS COUNT: THEIR ROLE AND SIGNIFICANCE IN LATIN AMERICAN DEVELOPMENT. Berkeley, CA.: University of California Press: 2012.

“Tensions That Make a Difference: Institutions, Interests, and the Immigrant Drive” SOCIOLOGICAL FORUM 27 (2012): 563-578

(with Adrienne Celaya, Erik Vickstrom and Rosa Aparicio). “Who Are We? Parental Influences on Self-identities and Self-esteem of Second Generation Youths in Spain”. INTERNATIONAL REVIEW OF SOCIOLOGY 70 (2012): 9-37.

(with Patricia Fernandez-Kelly and Donald Light). “Life on the Edge: Immigrants Confront the American Health System”. ETHNIC AND RACIAL STUDIES 35 (2012): 3-22

“America and its Immigrants: A Game of Mirrors”. PROCEEDINGS OF THE AMERICAN PHILOSOPHICAL SOCIETY 155 (2011): 418-432.

(with Min Zhou). “Transnationalism and Homeland Development: A Comparative Analysis of Mexican and Chinese Immigrant Organizations in the U.S.”. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF CHINESE DIASPORA STUDIES (2011): 1-29.

(with Erik Vickstrom). “Diversity, Social Capital, and Cohesion”. ANNUAL REVIEW OF SOCIOLOGY 37 (2011): 461-479.

(with William Haller and Scott Lynch). “Dreams Fulfilled, Dreams Shattered: Determinants of Segmented Assimilation in the Second Generation”. SOCIAL FORCES 89 (2011): 733-762.

(with William Haller and Scott Lynch). “On the Dangers of Rosy Lenses”. SOCIAL FORCES 89 (2011):775-781.

“Transnationalism, Migration, and Development”. INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT PLANNING REVIEW 33 (2011): 501-507.

(with Alejandro Rivas). “The Adaptation of Migrant Children”. THE FUTURE OF CHILDREN 21 (2011): 219-246.

(with Erik Vickstrom and Rosa Aparicio) “Coming of Age in Spain: Self –identification, Beliefs, and Self-esteem of the Second Generation”. BRITISH JOURNAL OF SOCIOLOGY 62 (2011): 387-417.

Phone: 305-284-3215
Office: G267
Faculty Assistant

Roca, Andrea Marie

Phone: 305-284-2353
Office: G264