Harold Lasswell Award for Outstanding Scientific Accomplishment in Political Psychology

Harold Lasswell Award for Outstanding Scientific Accomplishment in Political Psychology

The Lasswell Award is given for “distinguished scientific contribution in the field of political psychology.” It is named for Harold Lasswell, one of the first to apply psychology to the analysis of politics. He was, thereby, also one of the first to encounter the problems of interdisciplinary work: because of resistance to his ideas, from 1937 to 1950 not a single article of his was published in a political science journal. However, he continued to publish (in psychological and psychiatric journals, and books), and so ultimately he won recognition, being elected President of APSA in 1955. He taught at Chicago, Yale, CUNY, Temple, and finally Columbia.


How to Nominate:

All nominations must include the following: A short paragraph explaining why she/he deserves the award and a CV of the nominee.  To complete a nomination, simply send these materials to the Committee Chair by the deadline.

The award recipient will be strongly encouraged to attend the Annual Meeting and Awards Reception and may be asked to give a talk at the annual meeting the year after they receive the award, in recognition of their work in the field.


2022 Award Committee:

TBD – please check back soon

The nomination process for 2022 is not yet open. Please send submissions to the Chair. The deadline for nominations is 15 January 2022.

Winners will be notified by early March 2022.


Harold Lasswell Award for Outstanding Scientific Accomplishment in Political Psychology
James Gibson, Washington University in St. Louis

Dr. James Gibson has made path-breaking influential contributions in a wide range of areas of relevance to political psychology, including Institutional legitimacy, intergroup relations and conflict, truth and reconciliation, political tolerance, and social identity theory. With precise and in-depth analyses, his work has found broad recognition on an international scale. He is among the most highly cited political psychologists in the world. For example, a 2018 study in the American Political Science Association's journal PS ranked him as the top political scientist in the U.S. on both the number of scholarly articles published in top prestigious publications and the scholarly impact of that work. As an example his "Overcoming Trilogy" —a set of three political psychology books addressing various aspects of South Africa’s transition from apartheid— represents a broad, coherent, and cumulative explication, with the first book focusing on the problem of political intolerance, the second on reconciliation, and the third on historical injustices. His work on institutional legitimacy, African-Americans and the U.S. legal system, and multiple other topics puts him among the top scholars of political psychology in the world.


Past Winners

  • 2020 Fathali Moghaddam
  • 2019 George Marcus
  • 2018 Stephen Reicher
  • 2017 Jack Citrin
  • 2016 Linda Skitka
  • 2015 Virginia Sapiro
  • 2014 M. Kent Jennings
  • 2013 Bert Klandermans
  • 2012 Ervin Staub
  • 2011 Daniel Bar-Tal
  • 2010 Tom Pettigrew
  • 2009 Steven R. Brown
  • 2008 Philip Tetlock
  • 2007 David Winter
  • 2006 Jim Sidanius
  • 2005 Milton Lodge
  • 2004 Robert Jervis
  • 2003 Marilynn Brewer
  • 2002 John L. Sullivan
  • 2001 Peter Suedfeld
  • 2000 Fred I. Greenstein
  • 1999 William McGuire
  • 1998 Paul Sniderman
  • 1997 Betty Glad
  • 1996 Robert P. Abelson
  • 1995 David O. Sears
  • 1994 Lucian Pye
  • 1993 M. Brewster Smith
  • 1992 Dean G. Pruitt
  • 1991 Robert E. Lane
  • 1990 Philip E. Converse
  • 1989 Robert C. Tucker
  • 1988 Milton Rokeach
  • 1987 Jerome D. Frank
  • 1986 Anatol Rapaport
  • 1985 Alexander George
  • 1984 James MacGregor Burns
  • 1983 Myres McDougal
  • 1982 Leonard Doob
  • 1981 Erik Erikson
  • 1980 Angus Campbell
  • 1979 Nathan Leites

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