Jack A. Goldstone, a noted scholar of social movements, revolutions and international politics, will give a lecture at Southwestern on Thursday, Oct. 28, as part of the 2010 Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar Program.

Goldstone will give a lecture titled “Global Trends in the Quality of Governance and Democracy” at 6 p.m. in Room 105 of the F.W. Olin Building.

Goldstone is the Virginia E. and John T. Hazel Professor of Public Policy at George Mason University. His current research focuses on conditions for building democracy and stability in developing nations, the impact of population change on the global economy and international security, and the cultural origins of modern economic growth.

Goldstone has written more than 100 research articles and is the author of 10 books, including Revolution and Rebellion in the Early Modern World; Why Europe? The Rise of the West in World History; and States, Parties, and Social Movements. His essay, “The New Population Bomb:  Four Mega-Trends That Will Change the World,” led off the January/February 2010 issue of Foreign Affairs.

Goldstone has been a consultant for the U.S. State Department, the FBI and the U.S. Agency for International Development, helping devise measures and strategies to cope with failing and failed states. He also led a National Academy of Sciences study of USAID’s democracy assistance programs and ways to evaluate their impact.

“Jack Goldstone is one of the most influential social scientists, not just in academia but in government circles as well,” said Eric Selbin, professor of political science and University Scholar at Southwestern. Selbin references Goldstone’s work several times in his latest book about revolutions.

Goldstone earned his B.A., M.A. and Ph.D. at Harvard University.  He also has been a fellow of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University and has received grants from the MacArthur Foundation and the American Council of Learned Societies.

Each year, nearly a dozen distinguished scholars visit colleges and universities with chapters of Phi Beta Kappa. Founded in 1776, Phi Beta Kappa is the nation’s oldest academic honor society.  It has chapters at 280 colleges and universities, and more than 600,000 members. The Visiting Scholar Program has sent 577 scholars on 4,784 two-day visits in its 55 years of engaging academic communities.


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