Office of the Vice President for Global Communications

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

U-M political scientist Ronald Inglehart wins prestigious Johan Skytte Prize

U-M political scientist Ronald Inglehart and Harvard University colleague Pippa Norris have been awarded the 2011 Johan Skytte Prize in political science, officials at Sweden's Uppsala University announced.

  Ronald Inglehart

The prize, awarded by the Skytte Foundation at Uppsala, is one of the most prestigious prizes in the field, given annually "to the scholar who in the view of the foundation has made the most valuable contribution to political science," according to a description on the prize's website.

It was awarded to Inglehart and Norris "for innovative ideas about the relevance and roots of political culture in a global context, transcending previous mainstream approaches of research." It carries an award of 500,000 SEK, or Swedish Kroners, approximately equivalent to $79,000.

Inglehart is the Lowenstein Professor of Democracy, Democratization, and Human Rights, professor of political science, and a research professor at the Center for Political Studies, part of the Institute for Social Research.

Inglehart founded and directs the World Values Survey, a global network of social scientists studying changing values and their impact on social and political life. Started in 1981, the World Values Survey has executed five waves of interviews with representative national surveys of 97 societies on all six inhabited continents.

With Norris, he is co-author of numerous articles and three books, including "Cosmopolitan Communications: Cultural Diversity in a Globalized World," published in 2009 by Cambridge University Press.

Using sophisticated analyses and data from their worldwide surveys, they have shown that people's values, beliefs, and attitudes are changing systematically, and that these changes have a major impact on their societies. They have examined the impact of changing values on gender equality, the role of religion, and have examined to what extent the globalization of the mass media are causing prevailing values to converge or become more polarized.

Inglehart and Norris will accept the prize at a ceremony in Uppsala, Sweden, on Sept. 24.