College of Education and Human Development

Family Social Science

Sharon Danes

  • Professor emeritus

Sharon Danes

Areas of interest

Intersection of Social and Economic Decision-Making
Family Businesses
Families and Work
Family Financial Issues Within Relationships
Change and Resiliency
Farm Women, Families, and Businesses
Children and Money


During her over 40-year academic career, Sharon Danes’ research focused on the intersection of family and business systems that affect the viability of family businesses, as well as the intersection of social and economic decision-making in family finances. She developed many programs to support family business vitality and personal financial success as a Family Economist for Minnesota Extension.

In 2023, she was part of the writing team of a book on family businesses, Concise Introduction to the Family Firm, a multifaceted approach to the study and practice of family firm ownership. It explored conceptualizations of the family firm in-depth and provided encompassing theories to help propel the study and understanding of family-owned businesses.

The recipient of over $1,050,000 of research and educational grants, she authored over 160 refereed research articles, book chapters, and outreach publications emphasizing the intersection of economic and social decision-making. Danes received her doctorate in Family Economics & Management from Iowa State University, a master’s in Family Economics & Management from Michigan State University, and a bachelor’s in Home Economics Education & Extension from the University of Wisconsin.