Karen S. Cook is the Ray Lyman Wilbur Professor of Sociology and founding, and former Director of the Institute for Research in the Social Sciences (IRiSS). She conducts research on social interaction, social networks, social exchange, and trust. She has edited a number of books in the Russell Sage Foundation Trust Series, including Trust in Society (2001), Trust and Distrust in Organizations: Emerging Perspectives (with R. Kramer, 2004), eTrust: Forming Relations in the Online World (with C. Snijders, V. Buskens, and Coye Cheshire, 2009), and Whom Can Your Trust? (with M. Levi and R. Hardin, 2009). She is co-author of Cooperation without Trust? (with R. Hardin and M. Levi, 2005) and she co-edited Sociological Perspectives on Social Psychology (with Gary Alan Fine and James S. House, 1995). In 1996, she was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and in 2007 to the National Academy of Sciences. In 2004 she received the ASA Social Psychology Section Cooley Mead Award for Career Contributions to Social Psychology. In 2018 she was elected to the American Philosophical Society.
Current and Founding Director, Institute for Research in the Social Sciences (IRiSS);
Board of Trustees, Russell Sage Foundation (2012-present)