Salisbury University students on campus
Mark James de Socio

Mark James de Socio


PhD, University of Cincinnati
MS, University of Alabama
BS, Towson University

Dr. Mark James de Socio is Professor of Geography in the Department of Geography and Geosciences. Broadly trained in Human Geography, his research has focused primarily on urban political economy, economic development, and urban revitalization, including social network analyses of urban political networks, and classical location theory. He has published peer-reviewed research in various academic journals, including Antipode, Regional Studies, Journal of Urban Affairs, Growth and Change, and Southeastern Geographer. He served on the editorial board of The Professional Geographer (2010-19) and has served on the editorial board of Arab World Geographer since 2009. He served as Chair of the Middle Atlantic Division of the American Association of Geographers in 2012 and 2013.

In addition to scholarship, Mark is an awarded-winning novelist. He has published two novels that incorporate his research and reading interests: Alter Road (2020), and Friendship Games (2023).

Alter Road concerns unrest in Detroit, Michigan, following decades of economic decline and neglect. Friendship Games is a modern take on the USS Maine incident that launched the Spanish-American War in 1898; this time it is a US aircraft carrier that sinks in the Persian Gulf amid tensions with Iran and a changing world order.

Friendship Games earned a coveted Kirkus starred review and consideration for the Kirkus Prize for literary excellence. It was selected by the editors of Kirkus Reviews as one of their Best Books of the Year. It was named a Chanticleer Reviews’ Global Thriller of the Year and earned a Bronze Medal Award from the Military Writers Society of America. It is also a Finalist for Chanticleer Reviews’ Clue Book Award for Suspense/Thriller of the Year.

Expect a follow-up to Alter Road and Friendship Games in early 2025.