Professor, Communications Studies
Renee Houston’s research and pedagogy examines means of organizing to address inequities centered on issues of gender, social class, and race. In collaboration with Carolyn Weisz, her research on perceptions and experiences of homelessness was used by county and state officials to craft policies aimed at ending homelessness. Publications include: “The promise and peril of engaged scholarship,” in Women & Language (2015), co-written with Carolyn Weisz; “Being homeless and gay or lesbian is a difficult combination: An invisible population,” in Communicating Gender: A Casebook (2009); and, co-written with Carolyn Weisz, “City of Tacoma Housing First Case Management Survey,” a 2009 report that led to the creation of city policy to protect nonprofit organizations’ case managers on the job. Houston also has researched the social effects of information and communication technologies, such as the impact of social media, texting, and email on work and family communication. This will be covered in her forthcoming publication, with P. Edley, "Information and communication technologies in work and family life: A multi-generational view (Computer-Mediated Communication in Personal Relationships, Second Edition). Houston has also pursued research in work-life balance, systems theory, and feminist approaches to scholarship.
As associate dean, Houston leads a team of staff and faculty to institutionalize meaningful, focused experiential learning in both curricular and co-curricular activities for Puget Sound students.