Jason Anthony Plummer’s research is grounded in critical consciousness development and draws from positive youth development, psychological empowerment, social identity development, and social justice theories to understand sociopolitical development among youth of various ethnic groups. A driving question of his research is how and why adolescents and young adults become engaged in political systems as critical actors.
Critical consciousness is the capacity to understand the structural nature of oppressive and social injustices coupled with a desire to take action towards undoing their existence. Mr. Plummer’s research agenda is to document patterns of developmental change in critical consciousness across adolescence and young adulthood and corresponding changes in various forms of engagement. A goal of Mr. Plummer’s research is to identify how relationships and experiences in everyday contexts such as families, schools, and neighborhoods foster growth in critical consciousness and critical participatory behaviors. Further, he is interested in examining mechanisms that explain sociopolitical inequalities and understanding ethnic and cultural differences in youth civic engagement and political behavior. Mr. Plummer also conceptualizes critical consciousness as a worldview that may influence professional conduct within social service and state agencies (mental health, healthcare, and policing). His program of research uses both quantitative and qualitative methodologies has both theoretical and applied implications. His research projects have received funding from UCLA’s graduate division and honorable mention status from the Ford Foundation.
Mr. Plummer received his B.A. in psychology from Baruch College, CUNY, and both his master’s in social work and urban planning are from the University of Michigan. He is a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Urban Social Work and author of Families in the Urban Environment: Understanding resiliency (Cognella, 2018)