Lauding her for blending “deep academic knowledge with compelling moral reasoning,” the American Academy for Political and Social Science (AAPSS) has named Harvard Kennedy School Professor Samantha Power its Daniel Patrick Moynihan Prize winner for 2019.
Power, the Anna Lindh Professor of the Practice of Global Leadership and Public Policy and a professor of practice at Harvard Law School, is being recognized for her dual role as a leading public scholar and passionate advocate for human rights.
AAPSS President Ken Prewitt said Power is a fitting recipient of an award named after Moynihan, the late U.S. Senator from New York who, like Power, served as the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations. Moynihan was also a Harvard professor of education and urban politics in the late 1960s and early 1970s. The award is given annually to a leading policymaker, social scientist, or public intellectual “whose career demonstrates the value of using research and evidence to improve the human condition.”
“In accepting the 2019 Moynihan Prize, Ambassador Power reminds social scientists around the world that we have a moral obligation as well as an academic task,” Prewitt said.
Ambassador Power served as the 28th U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations from 2013 to 2017. Obama has called her “one of our foremost thinkers on foreign policy.” At the U.N., she rallied member nations to oppose Russian aggression in Ukraine, negotiated sanctions against North Korea, lobbied to secure the release of political prisoners, helped to cripple ISIS’s financial networks, and helped to guide a coalition to end the Ebola crisis in Africa.
John Holdren, the Teresa and John Heinz Professor of Environmental Policy at HKS and co-director of the Program on Science, Technology, and Public Policy at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, was the recipient of the 2018 Moynihan Prize.
Previous Moynihan Prize recipients include economist and Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz and fellow Kennedy School scholar William Julius Wilson, Lewis P. and Linda L. Geyser University Professor.
As the Moynihan Prize recipient, Power will give a public lecture in Washington, D.C., on October 3, 2019.