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PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 29, 2016 – The American Academy of Political and Social Science (AAPSS), one of the nation’s oldest learned societies, will welcome five distinguished scholars as Fellows of the Academy in 2017. The AAPSS inducts a new cohort of Fellows each spring in recognition of their contributions to society through research and public service.

There are 114 Fellows of the Academy in total, most of them university-based scholars responsible for research that has changed our understanding of human behavior and the world in which we live; a small number of AAPSS Fellows are public servants, who have used research and evidence in institutions of government to improve the common good.

The 2017 Fellows of the Academy are:

Lawrence Bobo, whose research has quantified, qualified, and illuminated understandings about social inequality, politics, racism and attitudes about race in America. He is the W. E. B. Du Bois Professor of the Social Sciences at Harvard University, where he holds appointments in the Department of Sociology and the Department of African and African American Studies. Bobo will be named the 2017 W. E. B. Du Bois Fellow.

Margaret Levi, a political scientist who has made foundational contributions in comparative politics, the ways in which the quality of government can be improved, and political economies that can sustain workers. She is the Sara Miller McCune Director of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS) at Stanford, where she is also a professor of political science. Levi will be named the 2017 Robert A. Dahl Fellow.

Martha Minow, an expert in human rights and advocacy for members of racial and religious minorities and for women, children, and persons with disabilities. She is the Morgan and Helen Chu Dean and Professor of Law at Harvard, and has written extensively about privatization, military justice, and ethnic and religious conflict. Minow will be named the 2017 Theodore Roosevelt Fellow.

Timothy Smeeding, a world leader in the analysis of poverty, economic and intergenerational mobility, inequality, and consumption and wealth. Smeeding was founding director of the Luxembourg Income Study (1983), and is the Lee Rainwater Distinguished Professor of Public Affairs and Economics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he led the Institute for Research on Poverty from 2008 to 2014. Smeeding will be named the 2017 John Kenneth Galbraith Fellow.

Claude Steele, who has transformed understandings of the psychological experiences of individuals, particularly how individuals experience and respond to threat. He has analyzed threats to self-image, and how self-affirmation contributes to self-regulation, focusing on the academic under-achievement of minority students, and the role of alcohol and drug use in self-regulation and social behavior. He is a professor in the Department of Psychology and the Graduate School of Education at the University of California, Berkeley.  Steele will be named the 2017 Gordon Allport Fellow.

“Each year we welcome distinguished Fellows to the Academy, and this year is no different,” said Kenneth Prewitt, Carnegie Professor of Public Affairs at Columbia University and President of the AAPSS. “Each of these scholars reminds us that the results of rigorous and compelling research serve the common good when the research influences public policymaking. We are honored that they have joined the select group of Fellows of the Academy.”

Bobo, Levi, Minow, Smeeding, and Steele will officially join the Academy on the evening of May 18, 2017, in a ceremony in Washington, DC.

For a complete list of AAPSS Fellows, visit

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The American Academy of Political and Social Science promotes the use of social science in the public domain and in policy-making. Its flagship journal, The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, brings together public officials and scholars from across social science disciplines to address issues ranging from the transition to adulthood in developing countries to the current and future impact of the Great Recession, from enhanced government regulation to the influence of the criminal justice system on American civic life.

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