Victoria D. Alexander (AB, Princeton; AM, PhD, Stanford) is Professor of Sociology and Arts Management. She joined Goldsmiths in September 2015 as the Programme Convenor of the BA (Hons) in Arts Management. She moved to Goldsmiths from the sociology department at the University of Surrey, where she taught sociology of arts and cultural organisations, and previously taught sociology of culture and organisational behaviour at Harvard University.
Her research has been in the intersection of sociology of the arts, visual culture, sociology of organisations, and sociology of culture – all areas directly relevant to Arts Management. She has studied the funding of art museums, cultural policy in comparative perspective, sociology of the arts, neighbourhoods, and visual culture. Current interdisciplinary work covers aesthetic fields, user-generated reviews of cultural attractions, and arts policy. She is Goldsmiths' lead on the EU-Funded UNCHARTED project (https://uncharted-culture.eu)
- PhD (Sociology), Stanford University 1990
- AM (Sociology), Stanford University 1985
- AB (Sociology) summa cum laude, Princeton University 1981
Teaching and Supervision
Alexander, Victoria D. and Rueschemeyer, Marilyn. 2005. Art and the State: The Visual Arts in Comparative Perspective. London: Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 978-1-4039-4525-9
Alexander, Victoria D.. 2003. Sociology of the Arts: Exploring Fine and Popular Forms. Oxford: Blackwells. ISBN 0631230408
Alexander, Victoria D.. 1996. Museums and Money: The Impact of Funding on Exhibitions, Scholarship, and Management. Bloomington: Indiana University Press. ISBN 9780253332059
Alexander, Victoria D.; Hägg, Samuli; Häyrynen, Simo and Sevänen, Erkki, eds. 2018. Art and the Challenge of Markets: National Cultural Politics and the Challenges of Marketization and Globalization. London: Palgrave. ISBN 9783319645858
Alexander, Victoria D.; Hägg, Samuli; Häyrynen, Simo and Sevänen, Erkki, eds. 2018. Art and the Challenge of Markets: From Commodification of Art to Artistic Critiques of Capitalism. London: Palgrave. ISBN 9783319646435
Alexander, Victoria D.. 2019. Cultural Policy Effects on the Marketing Orientation in London Art Museums. In: Karin M. Ekström, ed. Museum Marketization: Cultural Institutions in the Neoliberal Era. Abingdon: Routledge. ISBN 9781138393851
Alexander, Victoria D.. 2018. Public Institutions of “High” Culture. In: Laura Grindstaff; Ming-Cheng Lo and John R Hall, eds. Routledge Handbook of Cultural Sociology: Second Edition. London: Routledge, pp. 369-377. ISBN 9781138288621
Alexander, Victoria D.. 2018. Enterprise Culture and the Arts: Neo-Liberal Values and British Art Institutions. In: Victoria D. Alexander; Samuli Hägg; Simo Häyrynen and Erkki Sevänen, eds. Art and the Challenge of Markets: National Cultural Politics and the Challenges of Marketization and Globalization 1. London: Palgrave, pp. 67-93. ISBN 978-3-319-64585-8
Alexander, Victoria D. and Hägg, Samuli. 2018. Reflections on the Challenge of Markets in National, International and Transnational Art Worlds. In: Victoria D. Alexander; Samuli Hägg; Simo Häyrynen and Erkki Sevänen, eds. Art and the Challenge of Markets Volume 1: National Cultural Politics and the Challenges of Marketization and Globalization. London: Palgrave, pp. 327-339. ISBN 978-3-319-64585-8
Hale, Scott A.; Blank, Grant and Alexander, Victoria D.. 2017. Live versus Archive: Comparing a Web Archive and to a Population of Webpages. In: Niels Brügger and Ralph Schroeder, eds. The Web as History. London: UCL Press, pp. 45-61. ISBN 978–1–911307–42–6
Alexander, Victoria D. and Bowler, Anne E.. 2020. Contestation in aesthetic fields: Legitimation and legitimacy struggles in outsider art. Poetics, pp. 1-17. ISSN 0304-422X
Alexander, Victoria D.; Blank, Grant and Hale, Scott A.. 2018. TripAdvisor Reviews of London Museums: A New Approach to Understanding Visitors. Museum International, 70(1-2), pp. 154-165. ISSN 1350-0775
Alexander, Victoria D.; Blank, Grant and Hale, Scott A.. 2018. Digital Traces of Distinction? Popular Orientation and User-Engagement with Status Hierarchies in TripAdvisor Reviews of Cultural Organizations. New Media & Society, 20(11), pp. 4218-4236. ISSN 1461-4448
Alexander, Victoria D. and Bowler, Anne E.. 2018. Scandal and the Work of Art: The Nude in an Aesthetically Inflected Sociology of the Arts. Cultural Sociology, 12(3), pp. 325-342. ISSN 1749-9755
Alexander, Victoria D.. 2018. Heteronomy in the arts field: state funding and British arts organizations. The British Journal of Sociology, 69(1), pp. 23-43. ISSN 0007-1315
Alexander, Victoria D.. 2016. A Brave Look at Disadvantage, Black Youth, and Culture: Patterson and Fosse’s The Cultural Matrix. Ethnic and Racial Studies, 39(8), pp. 1419-1425. ISSN 0141-9870
Alexander, Victoria D.. 2014. Art and the Twenty-First Century Gift: Corporate Philanthropy and Government Funding in the Cultural Sector. Anthropological Forum, 24(4), pp. 364-380. ISSN 0066-4677
Alexander, Victoria D. and Bowler, Anne E.. 2014. Art at the Crossroads: The Arts in Society and the Sociology of Art. Poetics, 43(1), pp. 1-19. ISSN 0304-422X
Alexander, Victoria D.. 2013. Views of the Neighbourhood: A Photo-Elicitation Study of the Built Environment. Sociological Research Online, 18(1), pp. 185-200.
Moran-Ellis, Jo; Alexander, Victoria D.; Cronin, Ann; Dickinson, Mary; Fielding, Jane; Sleney, Judith and Thomas, Hilary. 2006. Triangulation and Integration: Processes, Claims and Implications. Qualitative Research, 6(1), pp. 45-59. ISSN 1468-7941
Alexander, Victoria D.. 1996. Pictures at an Exhibition: Conflicting Pressures in Museums and the Display of Art. American Journal of Sociology, 101(4), pp. 797-839. ISSN 0002-9602
Further profile content
Teaching, Area of Supervision and Professional Activities
Dr Alexander currently contributes to modules in arts management, arts and cultural theory, cultural policy and visual methds. Previously, she has taught organisational behaviour, cultural organisations and industries, sociology of the arts, visual culture and research methods (qualitative, mixed, visual, and documentary methods).
Dr Alexander will supervise PhD work in the following areas: Arts management, art worlds including understandings of artistic/creative practice, cultural organisations and industries, cultural policy, heritage, organisational behaviour, sociology of the arts, urban arts, visual culture.
Dr Alexander has been active in the sociology of the arts and in arts management. She is on the Advisory Board of the Research Network on the Sociology of the Arts, European Sociological Association, and previously served as Decana (Senior advisor), Chair, and Vice-Chair for the Network. She organised the international conference, Great Expectations: Arts and the Future, organised or co-organised numerous conference sessions on arts and culture in the US and Europe, and was Guest Editor, with Anne Bowler for a Special Issue, ‘Art at the Crossroads’ for the journal Poetics.
She led on a multi-disciplinary effort, the Surrey Light Project (EPSRC, Award Reference: EP/J501566/1), working with visual artist Tine Bech to create a light sculpture, inspired by the science of light, which was exhibited in Guildford Castle, Guildford, England.