Whether scholars studying social movements, participants investing ourselves in them, or bystanders who are reacting to them, people focus on social movements out of a commitment that social movements “matter,” that they have the power to change policy, culture, and the world we live in. But, too often, the outcomes and efficacy of movements have been assumed rather than empirically test. Over the last decade, this has begun to markedly change. To capitalize on this research and in order to help move along more work in this area, we have created a new, easily-searchable and filterable database organizing existing literature on social movement outcomes. We hope that this database will further promote research on the topic by allowing interested academics and activists to have a source for constant updates on new findings regarding the consequences of social movements.

Users can filter studies based on the type of outcome under examination (i.e., political, biographical, etc.), the specific outcome (e.g. roll call votes), the mechanisms/factors associated with the outcome, the time period or locations covered by the data, and specific data sources. The database is also searchable and will return any entry that contains the search word. The database currently includes over 180 publications, and the database will continue to grow as scholars produce more research. We especially hope that users will submit citations to be added to the database so that it remains an exhaustive and up-to-date research tool.

Users can also download a copy of the database via Google Drive here.

For those new to the social movement outcomes literature, here are some helpful reviews:

Amenta, Edwin, Neal Caren, Elizabeth Chiarello and Yang Su. 2010. “The Political Consequences of Social Movements.” Annual review of Sociology 36:287-307.

Amenta, Edwin, and Neal Caren. 2004. “The Legislative, Organizational, and Beneficiary Consequences of State-Oriented Challenges.” In Blackwell Companion to Social Movements. Edited by David A. Snow, Sarah Soule, and Hanspeter Kriesi, 462-488. Oxford: Blackwell.

Andrews, Kenneth, and Bob Edwards. 2004. “Advocacy Organizations in the U.S. Political Process.” Annual Review of Sociology 30: 479-506.

Burstein, Paul. 1999. “Social Movements and Public Policy” In Marco G. Giugni, Doug McAdam, and Charles Tilly (eds.), How Social Movements Matter. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 3-21.

DeMartini, Joseph. 1983. “Social Movement Participation: Political Socialization, Generational Consciousness, and Lasting Effects.” Youth Society 15(2): 195-223.

Earl, Jennifer. 2000. “Methods, Movements and Outcomes.” Research in Social Movements 22: 3-25.

Earl, Jennifer. 2004. “The Cultural Consequences of Social Movements.” Pp. 308-530 in The Blackwell Companion to Social Movements, edited by D. A. Snow, S. A. Soule, and H. Kriesi. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing.

Giugini, Marco G. 2004. “Personal and Biographical Consequences.” Pp. 489-507 in The Blackwell Companion to Social Movements, edited by D. A. Snow, S. A. Soule, and H. Kriesi. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing.

Giugni, Marco G. 2008. “Political, Biographical, and Cultural Consequences of Social Movements.” Sociology Compass 2(5): 1582-1600.

Giugni, Marco G. 1998. “Was it Worth the Effort?: The Social Outcomes and Consequences fo Social Movements” Annual Review of Sociology 98:371-93.

Giuigni, Marco. 1999. “How Social Movements Matter: Past Research, Present Problems, Future Development” In Marco G. Giugni, Doug McAdam, and Charles Tilly (eds.), How Social Movements Matter. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press,
xiii-xxxiii.

Whittier, Nancy. 2004. “The Consequences of Social Movements for Each Other” Pp. 331-552 in The Blackwell Companion to Social Movements, edited by D. A. Snow, S. A. Soule, and H. Kriesi. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing.

The database was last updated May 5, 2015.

Contact information:

If you have a citation that should be added to the database, please fill out this form.  If you have any questions about the database, please contact the database administrator at movementoutcomes@gmail.com.

The Social Movement Outcomes Database is produced by the Youth Activism Project , which is part of the Youth and Participatory Politics (YPP) Research Network funded by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.