Monday, September 15, 2014

Selection of Distinguished Scholar Nominee 2014

Each year the Global South Caucus has honored a distinguished scholar at a luncheon held during the annual convention. In  this we respect geographical rotation and for 2015 the honor must go to an African or Middle East scholar. Although the Executive Committee makes the final decision, we  like to encourage member input into the selection process. Please send your choice via comment on this blog entry. (We do not normally open our entries to comment but we are specifically doing so for this purpose.) Comments should be made by September 30. If you do not wish to comment here, please send your choice directly to
The criteria for selection are the following:

The Global South Caucus’ Distinguished Scholar Award is given annually in recognition of the recipient’s exceptional and sustained contribution to global south international studies (defined within the context of the ISA), as reflected both in published works as well as policy contributions. If the recipient is able to attend the ISA convention at which the award is given, s/he will be expected to give a brief address to members, usually at a luncheon event.

General Information

Recipients must meet the Following Criteria

  1. A distinguished record of scholarship and usually a record of policy contributions reflecting a sustained interest in global south affairs. It is not required that the nominee be a member of the ISA but s/he should be at least familiar with the association and usually will have participated in some way in its activities in the past.


  • The recipient receives a plaque, which is presented at the ISA Annual Convention.

Selection Process

  • The Caucus Executive Committee will review nominations from the membership at large, and select the recipient.
  • The award will be presented during the ISA Annual Convention.

The following persons have been nominated this year:

 Prof. Jim Mittelman, American University, Washington D.C.: 
Here is a note from the nominating sponsor:

Jim's intellectual formation was largely in East Africa: as a student at the University of East Africa, Kampala, Uganda (today Makerere University), later a research associate and junior faculty member there, and then as a researcher at the University of Dar es Salaam (Tanzania) and Eduardo Mondlane University  (Mozambique).   

He has worked on policy issues (e.g. decolonization, “technological cooperation among developing countries,” and higher education for development) at UN agencies and participated in diplomacy training on North-South issues in various venues (Uganda Ministry of Foreign Affairs, United Nations Institute for Training and Research, and U.S. Foreign Service Institute).

Appointed first holder of the Pok Rafeah Chair in International Studies and Distinguished Visiting Professor, National University of Malaysia, Mittelman continues to be recognized as a major figure in our field.  He has been invited to give numerous public lectures, including “Academic Freedom, Transformation and Reconciliation,” Richard Feetham Memorial Lecture on Academic Freedom in Africa, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg  (previous speakers in this series included Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., and Bishop Desmond Tutu).

Within the International Studies Association, he was been named the 2010 International Political Economy Distinguished Senior Scholar and also served as a Vice president.  Additionally, he has served as Dean of Social Sciences at Queens College, City University of  New York; Dean of the Graduate School of International Studies (now the Korbel School), University of Denver; Director of the Social Science Foundation, University of Denver; and founding Chair, Department of Comparative and Regional Studies, American University. He has been an Appointed Member, Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton; Distinguished Visiting Fellow and currently serves as an Honorary Fellow, Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies

Author of  several books with major impact including Out from Underdevelopment: Prospects for the Third World,  a work on development strategies that became widely adopted in courses on the global South; The Globalization Syndrome: Transformation and Resistance, a cross-regional study of Eastern Asia and Southern Africa in relation to globalizing processes; Capturing Globalization, with Norani Othman and other colleagues at the National University of Malaysia, a volume awarded the University’s Gold Medal in the Social Sciences, his work has, in my view and that of others has shaped scholarship, policy, and teaching in our field. 

Active as a public intellectual, with many media appearances on issues pertaining to the global South, in venues such as the New York Times and Washington Post , radio, and television, most recently on memoralizing Nelson Mandela, Mittelman remains a major spokesperson for these issues and ideas. 

His main interest continues to be the nexus of globalization and the global South. A very prolific writer and teacher as well as mentor, his next book , provisionally titled Universities and International Relations: Repurposing Higher Education is under contract with Princeton University Press. One of the themes in this work is the distinctive and ongoing challenges facing postcolonial universities in different contexts.

Prof. Bahgat Korany, American University in Cairo: Described by his nominating sponsor as an

"Egyptian & Canadian & global citizen."

From AUC, here is his bio:

Bahgat Korany is a Professor in the Department of Political Science at the American University in Cairo and the Director of the AUC Forum. He is also an Honorary professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Montreal. Education includes B.A. (honors) Cairo University, M.A. (International Relations) the University of Sussex, England, the Diploma in Development Studies (Economics and Sociology), the Institute of Development Studies in Geneva, and a Ph.D. (Political Science) from the University of Geneva (1974).

Korany’s post-graduate work experience has been varied, ranging from the United Nations (European Office, 1970-74) to academia: at the graduate Institute of International Studies in Geneva (1970-74) ; the University of Montreal (since 1974); and American University in Cairo since 1998. He is founder and first Director of the Interdisciplinary Program of Arab Studies at the University of Montreal (1979-1993), and co-founder and first Director of the Inter-University Consortium of Arab and Middle East Studies, (Canada 1987-1999). Dr. Korany has furthermore been a visiting professor at the Universities of Dakar, Laval, Carleton, Harvard (visiting scholar), McGill, Algiers, Aix-Marseille, Princeton, Oxford, Paris, etc. He is also a founding member of the International Organization of South-South Cooperation (Beijing, April 1983).

In addition to publishing newspaper articles (e.g. regular columnist to El-Ettihad’s Special week-end edition since 2001) and giving radio and TV interviews in North America, Europe and the Middle East. Korany has published nine books – in English or French -and contributed chapters to about 29 other books as well as about 50 articles in specialized periodicals. Some of his writings have been translated and published in Arabic, Spanish, Italian and Chinese. He was / is a member of the Editorial Board of several established periodicals such as Canadian Political Science Review, Études Internationales, Third World Affairs Yearbook, (London, England), International Interactions (Washington D.C.), European Journal of International Relations, Mediterranean Politics, and International Studies Quarterly. His first book, 'Social Change, Charisma and International Behavior' was awarded the 1976 Hauchman Prize. In 1993, Bahgat Korany was elected to the Royal Academy of Canada and has been included in the annual Canadian WHO’s WHO’s since then.

Professor Rita Abrahamsen. Described by her nominator as follows:

Rita has made a profound and sustained contribution not only to the study of Africa but, perhaps more importantly, its use to generate insights into International Relations that are of far wider theoretical, disciplinary and political import. Her work has ranged widely across issues of economic and political development and, most recently, into the globalisation and privatisation of security. Her 2011 coauthored book with Michael C. Williams, Security Beyond the State, is a seminal intervention in multiple subfields of IR simultaneously, notably international security, IPE, global governance and, of course, the study of Africa.

Her profile from University of Ottawa's website:
Rita Abrahamsen is Professor in the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs. Her research interests are in African politics, security and development, security privatization and postcolonial theory. She is the author (with M.C. Williams) of Security Beyond the State: Private Security in International Politics (Cambridge University Press, 2011) and Disciplining Democracy: Development Discourse and the Good Governance Agenda in Africa (Zed Books, 2000). Her articles have appeared in leading journals including African Affairs, Alternatives, International Political Sociology, Journal of Modern African Studies, Political Studies, Third World Quarterly and Review of African Political Economy. She is joint-editor of African Affairs, the highest ranked journal in African studies. Prior to joining the University of Ottawa, she was in the Department of International Politics at the University of Aberystwyth, and she has been visiting fellow at the University of Cape Town, the European University Institute in Florence, the University of Queensland in Brisbane, and the International Peace Research Institute (PRIO) in Oslo.

Write-in entry:
Samir Amin