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Levi Elected to National Academy of Sciences

Sep 9 2015

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Margaret Levi, the Sara Miller McCune Director of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS) as well as professor of political science at Stanford, has been elected to the prestigious National Academy of Sciences (NAS). Levi is one of four former CASBS fellows elected to NAS in 2015. The others are Robert Bates (a member of Levi's 1993-94 cohort), Dorothy Cheney (1983-84), and Matthew Jackson (2005-06). A remarkable 205 CASBS fellows have been elected to NAS over the decades.

In an April 28 media release the NAS announced the election of Levi and 83 other U.S.-based members. Those newly elected bring the total number of NAS members to 2,250.

The NAS was established in 1863 and is charged with providing with providing independent, objective advice to the nation on matters related to science and technology. Members, according to NAS, are elected “in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research. Membership is a widely accepted mark of excellence in science and is considered one of the highest honors that a scientist can receive.”

Stanford University announced the election of Levi and eight other Stanford faculty members in an April 30 media release.

Among the new NAS members is Roberts Bates, a Harvard professor and two-time CASBS fellow, his second time in the early 1990s along with Levi. The two were among a group of fellows who collaborated on a project that ultimately resulted in the co-authored volume Analytic Narratives (Princeton Univ. Press, 1998), an ambitious book offering a rational choice, case study methodology that proposes a way of extracting empirically testable, general hypotheses and explain political outcomes from particular cases. It is innovative in that it bridges a gap between game-theoretic and empirically-driven approaches to political economy.

Levi is elated by the NAS election and the association with Bates.

“I could not have been more surprised or honored by this election to the National Academy of Sciences. It almost makes me believe that my contributions to social science indeed have been significant; I certainly have tried my hardest to advance knowledge. That Bob Bates, one of my colleagues and co-authors from the CASBS class of 1993-94, has been elected with me makes the moment event sweeter.”

New members will be inducted in April 2016 at the NAS’s 153rd annual meeting in Washington, D.C.

Activist-Scholar Award from ISA

In May 2015, shortly after the NAS announcement, Levi was honored with the 2016 Outstanding Activist-Scholar award, conferred by the International Political Economy Section of the International Studies Association (ISA). The award recognizes “truly exemplary individuals who bridge academia and activism, whose publications are recognized within the academic community as well as reaching a broader audience, and who are active participants in progressive civil society.” In particular, ISA noted her scholar activism in the campus anti-sweatshop movement in the U.S.

In March 2016 Levi will speak at the IAS conference in Atlanta on necessary steps to better ensure that the goods we consume are produced in a manner that sustains both workers and the environment. A panel of scholars will reflect on her contributions, and the award will be presented at a reception that evening.

In addition to these honors, Levi became a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2001 and a John Simon Guggenheim Fellow in 2002. She served as president of the American Political Science Association in 2004-05. In 2014 she received the William H. Riker Prize in Political Science.

Among her recent work, Levi is one of five co-authors of Labor Standards in International Supply Chains: Aligning Rights and Incentives (Edward Elgar, 2015), and co-author (with John Ahlquist) of In the Interest of Others: Organizations and Social Activism (Princeton Univ. Press, 2013).

Written by Mike Gaetani

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