Roberts and Sambanis Named to American Academy of Arts and Sciences


Dorothy Roberts, George A. Weiss Professor of Law and Sociology, the Raymond Pace and Sadie Tanner Mossell Alexander Professor of Civil Rights, and professor of Africana Studies; and Nicholas Sambanis, Presidential Distinguished Professor of Political Science, have been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. They join more than 260 new members honored in 2022—including four other University faculty and researchers—recognized for their “accomplishments and leadership in academia, the arts, industry, public policy, and research.”

Roberts is the founding director of the Program on Race, Science, and Society. With appointments in the Law School and Penn Arts & Sciences, she works at the intersection of law, social justice, science, and health, focusing on urgent social justice issues in policing, family regulation, science, medicine, and bioethics.

Her major books include Fatal Invention: How Science, Politics, and Big Business Re-create Race in the Twenty-first Century, Shattered Bonds: The Color of Child Welfare, and Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction, and the Meaning of Liberty. Her newest, Torn Apart: How the Child Welfare System Destroys Black Families—and How Abolition Can Build a Safer World, was published in early April. She is the author of more than 100 scholarly articles and book chapters, as well as a co-editor of six books on such topics as constitutional law and women and the law.

Nicholas Sambanis is a director of the Penn Identity & Conflict Lab (PIC Lab). He writes on conflict processes with a focus on civil wars and other forms of intergroup conflict.

Sambanis’ interdisciplinary PIC Lab works on a broad range of topics related to intergroup conflict in the world, including the effects of external intervention on peace-building after ethnic war, the analysis of violent escalation of separatist movements, conflict between native and immigrant populations, and strategies to mitigate bias and discrimination against minority groups. His focus is the connection between identity politics and conflict processes, drawing on social psychology, behavioral economics, and the comparative politics and international relations literatures in political science.

Founded in 1780, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences honors excellence and convenes leaders from every field of human endeavor to examine new ideas, address issues of importance to the nation and the world, and work together “to cultivate every art and science which may tend to advance the interest, honor, dignity, and happiness of a free, independent, and virtuous people.”

To read the full announcement, click here.

Sambanis photo by Yoon Chang of The Daily Pennsylvanian.


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