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Political scientist Sagan honored with prize for teaching

STANFORD -- Scott Sagan, associate professor of political science, was named the tenth recipient of the Laurance and Naomi Carpenter Hoagland Prize for Undergraduate teaching at the Junior Convocation ceremony Wednesday, Sept. 25.

In presenting the honor, John Shoven, dean of the School of Humanities and Sciences, noted that Sagan is highly sought after by students for an honor thesis adviser as well as for his courses. He took over as director of the program in International Relations last year and led the first Stanford Honors College in international relations this summer.

Sagan earned his bachelor's degree at Oberlin College in 1977 and a doctorate in political science from Harvard in 1983. His dissertation critiquing modern deterrence theory won the American Political Science Association's award as the best dissertation that year in international relations, law and politics.

He came to Stanford in 1987, following a postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard and a stint as a consultant for the strategic nuclear policy branch of the organization of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. In addition to teaching and research at Stanford, he has served as a consultant to the Los Alamos National Laboratory, the Office of the Secretary of Defense and the Rand Corp. He also holds a Stanford appointment as senior fellow at the Institute for International Studies, working with the Center for International Security and Arms Control. Last year, he co-authored a book on the risk of nuclear accidents or accidental war. He argued that the risk is great in a debate with co-author Kenneth Waltz of the University of California-Berkeley.

The Hoagland Prize was established to honor and reward superb teachers and their commitment to undergraduate education in particular. It was named in honor of donor Laurance Hoagland Jr.'s parents.

Past winners are Patricia Jones, biological sciences; John Rick, anthropology; Jody Maxmin, classics and art; Mark Lepper, psychology; Paul Wender, chemistry; John Taylor, economics; Seth Lerer, English; and Anne Fernald, psychology.



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