John McLeveyJohn McLevey, PhD

Associate Professor

Department of Knowledge Integration


  • Department of Sociology & Legal Studies
  • Department of Geography & Environmental Management
  • School of Environment, Resources & Sustainability

Contact information

Phone: (519) 888-4567 ext. 41938
Office: Environment 1 (EV1), room 215

John McLevey website
NetLab website


PhD Sociology, McMaster University, 2013
MA Sociology, McMaster University, 2009
BA (H) Sociology, Memorial University of Newfoundland, 2008

Research interests

  • Social Network Analysis 
  • Computational Social Science 
  • Political Sociology and Social Movements
  • Cognitive Social Science / Cultural Cognition
  • Environmental Social Science

Dr. McLevey primarily works in the areas of computational social science and social network analysis, with substantive interests in political sociology and social movements, cognitive social science / cultural cognition, and environmental social science. His work to date has been funded by research grants from SSHRC and an Early Researcher Award from the Ministry of Research and Innovation. He is currently the Principal Investigator of a SSHRC-funded project (2020 – 2025) called “Disinformation, Democracy, and Online Political Deliberation.” He is also involved in a number of collaborative projects with colleagues throughout Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, Italy, and Germany.

Among other things, Dr. McLevey is the author of Doing Computational Social Science (Sage, UK, 2021) and a co-author of Industrial Development and Eco-Tourisms: Is Co-Existence Possible Between Oil Exploration and Nature Conservation (with Mark Stoddart and Alice Mattoni, Palgrave MacMillan, 2021). You can learn more about Dr. McLevey’s research by visiting the webpage for his research lab, Netlab.


John McLevey. 2021. Doing Computational Social Science. Sage, UK.

Mark Stoddart, Alice Mattoni, and John McLevey. 2021. Industrial Development and Eco-Tourisms: Is Co-existence Possible Between Oil Exploration and Nature Conservation? Palgrave MacMillan, UK.

HM. Collins with R. Evans, M. Innes, W. Mason-Wilkes, E. Kennedy, J. McLevey (authors after Harry Collins are listed alphabetically). Face-to-Face: Communication and the Liquidity of Knowledge. Book manuscript under review.

Peer Reviewed Journal Articles and Chapters in Peer Reviewed Edited Volumes

Mark Stoddart, John McLevey, Vanessa Schweizer, and Catherine Wong. Forthcoming. “Climate Change and Energy Futures: Theoretical Frameworks, Epistemological Issues, and Methodological Perspectives.” Introduction to an edited special issue of Society & Natural Resources.

David Tindall, Mark Stoddart, John McLevey, Lorien Jasny, Dana R. Fisher, Jennifer Earl, and Mario Diani. Forthcoming. “The Challenges and Opportunities of Ego-Network Analysis of Social Movements and Collective Action.” Under revision for Mario Small, Brea Perry, Bernice Pescosolido, and Edward Smith (Eds.) Personal Networks: Classic Readings and New Directions in Ego-centric Analysis. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

John McLevey. 2019. “Epistemic and Evidential Cultures.” Paul Atkinson, Sara Delamont, Richard Williams and Alex Cernat (eds). Sage Research Methods Foundations Online.

Kathryn S. Plaisance, Alexander V. Graham, John McLevey, and Janet Michaud. 2019. “Show Me the Numbers: A Quantitative Portrait of the Attitudes, Experiences, and Values of Philosophers of Science.” Synthese. 1-31.

Owen Gallupe, John McLevey, and Sarah Brown. 2018. "Selection or Influence? A Meta-Analysis of the Association between Peer and Personal Offending." Journal of Quantitative Criminology. 1-23.

John McLevey, Alexander Graham, Reid McIlroy-Young, Pierson Browne, and Kathryn S. Plaisance. 2018. "Interdisciplinarity and Insularity in the Diffusion of Knowledge: An Analysis of Disciplinary Boundaries Between Philosophy of Science and the Sciences." Scientometrics. 117(1):331-349.

John McLevey and Ryan Deschamps. 2018. "The Sociology of Public Policy Formation and Implementation." William Outhwaite and Stephen Turner (eds) The SAGE Handbook of Political Sociology. SAGE.

John McLevey, Allyson Stokes, and Amelia Howard. 2018. "Pierre Bourdieu's Uneven Influence on Anglophone Canadian Sociology." Thomas Medvetz and Jeff Sallaz (eds) The Oxford Handbook of Pierre Bourdieu. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

John McLevey and Reid McIlroy-Young. 2017. "Introducing metaknowledge: Software for Computational Research in Information Science, Network Analysis, and Science of Science." Journal of Informetrics. 11: 176-197.

Allyson Stokes and John McLevey (equal authors). 2016. "From Porter to Bourdieu: The Evolving Specialty Structure of English Canadian Sociology, 1966- 2014." Canadian Review of Sociology / Revue canadienne de sociologie. 53(2):176–202.

John McLevey. 2015. "Understanding Policy Research in Liminal Spaces: Think Tank Responses to Diverging Principles of Legitimacy." Social Studies of Science. 45(2):270-293.

John McLevey. 2014. "Think Tanks, Funding, and the Politics of Policy Knowledge in Canada." Canadian Review of Sociology / Revue canadienne de sociologie. 51(1):54-75.

Policy Reports 

Janice Aurini, John McLevey, Allyson Stokes, and Rob Gorbet. 2017. "Classroom Robotics and Acquisition of 21st Century Competencies: An Action Research Study of Nine Ontario School Boards." Report for the Council of Ontario Directors of Education (CODE) and the Ministry of Education, Ontario.

Special Issues of Peer-Reviewed Journals

Mark Stoddart, John McLevey, Vanessa Schweizer, and Catherine Wong (editors). 2020. Climate Change and Energy Futures. Special issue of Society and Natural Resources.

David Tindall, John McLevey, and Nina Kolleck (editors). Social Networks and Climate Change. Special issue / section of Social Networks. Call for papers currently open.

Research Grants

2020-2025. John McLevey (Principal Investigator), Anabel Quan-Haase (Co-Applicant), David Tindall (Co-Applicant), Collaborators: Darrin Durant, Deena Abul-Fottouh, Owen Gallupe, Martin Innes. “Disinformation, Democracy, and Online Political Deliberation.” SSHRC Insight Grant, $219,003 + $20,000 research supplement from the Department of Canadian Heritage Initiative for Digital Citizenship.

2019. Janice Aurini, Allyson Stokes, John McLevey, Jessica Riztk, and Rob Gorbet. “Ed-Tech Connect: An Intersectoral Workshop on Education, Technology, and 21st Century Labour.” SSHRC Connection Grant, $16,400 (plus matching funds).

2018-2019. Mark Stoddart (PI), John McLevey, (Co-Applicant), John Sandlos (Co-Applicant), Vanessa Schweizer (Co-Applicant), Catherine Mei Ling Wong (Co-Applicant). Climate Change and Energy Futures Workshop: Challenges and Opportunities for Global and Interdisciplinary Research. SSHRC Connection Grant, $24,373 (plus $14,339 in matching funds from Memorial University and University of Waterloo).

2016-2022. David Tindall (PI), John McLevey (Co-I), Mark Stoddart (Co-I). Collaborators: Mario Diani, Jennifer Earl, Dana R Fisher, Philip Leifeld, Andrew Jorgenson, Philippe Le Billon, Don Grant, Moses Boudourides. Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), Insight Grant Application. “Making sense of climate action: Understanding social mobilization to curb anthropogenic climate change through advances in social network analysis,” $282,672

2016-2020 John McLevey (PI), Ontario Early Researcher Award, Ministry of Research and Innovation, “Information and Idea Diffusion in an Open Source Collaboration Network,” $150,000.

2016-2018 John McLevey (PI), Owen Gallupe (Collaborator) and Martin Cooke (Collaborator), Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), Insight Development Grant, “Remaking the Boundaries of Open and Proprietary Science: A Longitudinal Study of Biomedical Research and Development Networks in Canada” $67,790.

2016-2018 Katie Plaisance (PI) and John McLevey (Co-I), Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), Insight Development Grant, “Increasing the Impact of Philosophy of Science in Scientific Domains”, $59,302

2015-2016 John McLevey (PI) and Vanessa Schweizer (Co-I), Basillie School of International Affairs, Major Workshops Grant, “Challenges and Opportunities for Governance of Socio-Ecological Systems in Comparative Perspective,” $8,400.

2015-2020 Mark Stoddart (PI) and John McLevey (Co-I), Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), Insight Grant, “The Oil-Tourism Interface and Social-Ecological Change in the North Atlantic,” $188,423.

2014-2016 John McLevey (PI), Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), Insight Development Grant, “Collaborative Design in Online Networks,” $74,814.

2013 University of Waterloo, Faculty Research Startup Grant, $15,000.

Open Source Research Software

metaknowledge: A Python package for quantitative and social networks research in the sociology of science and information science. Developed by Reid McIlroy-Young and John McLevey. First released in 2015. Under active development. 

nate: A Python package for network-based text analysis. Developed by John McLevey, Pierson Browne, and Tyler Crick. Under active development. 

pdpp: A Python package for principled data processing, Python. Developed by Pierson Browne, with contributions from Tyler Crick, Rachel Wood, John McLevey, and Alexander (Sasha) Graham. First released in 2015. Under active development. 

tidyextractors: A Python package for extracting quantitative datasets from source code repositories, email mbox files, and social media APIs (currently Twitter). Developed and maintained by NetLab RA Joel Becker with NetLab support. 

Contributions to Jonathan de Bruin’s Python package recordlinkage: A Python package for linking records across multiple data sources when there is no unique ID available. NetLab contributions are focused on implementing new comparison and fusion algorithms that are necessary for advancing my grant-funded empirical research on the structure and evolution of cross-sectoral collaboration networks in science and technology. Most NetLab contributions to recordlinkage are implemented by Joel Becker (RA) and occasionally Jillian Anderson (RA), and then submitted to Jonathan de Bruin as pull requests

gitnet: A Python package for mining source code repository and mailing list data and generating network datasets. Developed by Joel Becker, Jillian Anderson, Steve McColl, and John McLevey. First released in 2016. gitnet is still publicly available and functional, but development efforts and maintenance have shifted to tidyextractors and other Python packages. 


“Tory war on evidence claims another casualty” with Liam SwissToronto Star Op-Ed published on September 24, 2014, section A15.

Professional associations

  • Canadian Sociological Association
  • American Sociological Association
  • International Network for Social Network Analysis
  • Sociologists for Women in Society

Courses taught and in development

  • INTEG 120: The Art & Science of Learning
  • INTEG 275 Special Topics: Social Research Methods
  • INTEG 251: Creative Thinking
  • INTEG 340: Research Design and Methods
  • INTEG 375 Special Topics: Comparative Science and Health Policy
  • INTEG 375 Special Topics: Data Visualization
  • INTEG 375 Special Topics/SOC 312: Science and Technology in Society
  • INTEG 440/ SOC 440: Computational Social Science 
  • INTEG 475 Special Topics: "Big Data" and Social Science in the Digital Age
  • INTEG 475 Special Topics: Open Science and Technology
  • INTEG 240: Bullshit, Bias, and Bad Arguments (under development)