President, The American University in Cairo, Egypt

Richard C. Holbrooke Distinguished Visitor - Class of Fall 2013


Lisa Anderson is a specialist on politics in the Middle East and North Africa and was appointed president of The American University in Cairo in January 2011. Prior, she was the James T. Shotwell Professor of International Relations at Columbia University, where she had also served as dean of the School of International and Public Affairs, chair of the political science department, and director of the Middle East Institute. Before joining Columbia, Anderson was an assistant professor of government and social studies at Harvard University. The author of Pursuing Truth, Exercising Power: Social Science and Public Policy in the Twenty-first Century (2003) and The State and Social Transformation in Tunisia and Libya, 1830-1980 (1986), among other books, Anderson is also the former president of the Middle East Studies Association, chair of the board of the Social Science Research Council, member of the Council of the American Political Science Association, and member of the board of Human Rights Watch, where she served as co-chair of Human Rights Watch/Middle East. She is currently co-chair of the International Advisory Board of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, and a member of the International Advisory Council of the World Congress for Middle East Studies. Anderson holds a BA from Sarah Lawrence College and an MA in law and diplomacy from the Fletcher School at Tufts University. She earned a PhD in political science from Columbia University.