Claude M. Steele is an American social psychologist and a professor of psychology at Stanford University. He is best known for his work on stereotype threat and its application to minority student academic performance. His earlier work dealt with research on the self (e.g., self-image, self-affirmation) as well as the role of self-regulation in addictive behaviors. In 2010, he released his book, Whistling Vivaldi and Other Clues to How Stereotypes Affect Us (W. W. Norton & Company, 2011), summarizing years of research on stereotype threat and the underperformance of minority students in higher education.
Steele is elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the National Academy of Sciences, the National Science Board, the National Academy of Education, and the American Philosophical Society. He currently serves on the board of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. He is a fellow for both the American Institutes for Research and the American Academy of Political and Social Science, and serves on the advisory council of the MIT Media Lab.
Steele has served in several major academic leadership positions as the executive vice chancellor and provost at UC Berkeley, the I. James Quillen Dean for the School of Education at Stanford University, and as the 21st provost of Columbia University. Steele was a fellow at CASBS in the class of 1994-95 and served as the director from 2005 to 2009. He has been a faculty fellow since 2019-20.