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Photo courtesy Kathleen Thelen

Ford Professor of Political Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

American Academy Lecturer - Class of Spring 2023

Kathleen Thelen is Ford Professor of Political Science at MIT and a Permanent External Member of the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies in Cologne. Her work focuses on the origins and evolution of political-economic institutions in the rich democracies. She is the author, among others, of Varieties of Liberalization and the New Politics of Social Solidarity (2014) and How Institutions Evolve (2004), and co-editor of The American Political Economy: Politics, Markets, and Power (with Jacob Hacker, Alexander Hertel-Fernandez, and Paul Pierson, 2022), Advances in Comparative Historical Analysis (with James Mahoney, 2015), and Beyond Continuity (with Wolfgang Streeck, 2005). Her awards include the Aaron Wildavsky Enduring Contribution Prize (2019); the Michael Endres Research Prize (2019), the Barrington Moore Book Prize (2015), the Woodrow Wilson Foundation Award of the APSR (2005), the Mattei Dogan Award for Comparative Research (2006), and the Max Planck Research Award (2003). She was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2015 and to the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences in 2009. Thelen has served as President of the American Political Science Association (APSA), Chair of the Council for European Studies and as President of the Society for the Advancement of Socio-Economics. Thelen is General Editor of the Cambridge University Press Series in Comparative Politics.

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