The American Political Science Association (APSA) has recognized three Harvard affiliates for excellence in the study, teaching, and practice of politics.

Beth A. Simmons, director of the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs and Clarence Dillon Professor of International Affairs in Harvard’s Department of Government, has won the Woodrow Wilson Foundation Award for her interdisciplinary book “Mobilizing for Human Rights: International Law in Domestic Politics.”

The award, supported by the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, is given annually by APSA for the best book published in the United States during the previous calendar year on government, politics, or international affairs.

Simmons’ book, which argues that international human rights law has made a positive contribution to the realization of human rights in much of the world, also won the American Society for International Law’s 2010 certificate of merit for a pre-eminent contribution to creative scholarship.


“Mobilizing for Human Rights” is remarkable in that interdisciplinary work rarely satisfies both disciplines, yet the book has garnered accolades from professional associations in law and politics.

“I think it is a good signal that strict disciplinary lines are breaking down and open minds are prevailing in many scholarly societies,” said Simmons.

Also being receiving awards from APSA are Steven J. Kelman, the Albert J. Weatherhead III & Richard W. Weatherhead Professor of Public Management in the Kennedy School of Government, and Mikhail Pryadilnikov, associate of the Kathryn W. and Shelby Cullom Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies.

Kelman received the John Gaus Award and Lectureship to honor a lifetime of exemplary scholarship in the joint tradition of political science and public administration, and to recognize achievement and encourage scholarship in public administration. Pryadilnikov has won the Leonard D. White Award, supported by the University of Chicago, for the best doctoral dissertation in the field of public administration. His dissertation is titled “The State and Markets in Russia: Understanding the Development of Bureaucratic Implementation Capacities Through the Study of Regulatory Reform, 2001-2008.”

Kelman, Pryadilnikov, and Simmons will receive their awards at the 2010 APSA annual meeting in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 2.