Curriculum VITAE

Department/Program(s):History, Woodrow Wilson School
Position: Professor
Title: John P. Birkelund ’52 Professor in History and International Affairs. Vice Dean, Woodrow Wilson School.
Area(s): Asia, Europe
Field: Power, Authoritarianism,Geopolitics, Russian empire and Soviet Union, Global History

Professor Kotkin has been teaching in the department since 1989. He holds a joint appointment in the Woodrow Wilson School for Public and International Affairs at Princeton.

Professor Kotkin established the department’s Global History workshop. He serves on the core editorial committee of the journal, World Politics. He founded and edits a book series on Northeast Asia. From 2003 until 2007, he was a member and then chair of the editorial board at Princeton University Press. From 1996 until 2009 he directed Princeton’s Program in Russian and Eurasian Studies.

Outside Princeton, he serves as the lead academic consultant in emerging markets for the World Pension Forum, an umbrella organization for institutional investors. He also works as a consultant, investigator, and strategist for the Open Society Institute (Soros), Ford Foundation, and other agencies in post-Communist higher education. From 2006 (until taking a break in February 2009) he has been the regular book reviewer for the New York Times Sunday Business section.

His latest book is Uncivil Society: 1989 and the Implosion of Communist Establishments, with a contribution by Jan Gross (Random House, 2009). He is currently writing a book on dictatorship and power entitled « Stalin’s World. » He also has a manuscript in draft called « Lost in Siberia: Labyrinths of the Ob River Basin. »

His research interests include authoritarianism, geopolitics, global political economy, empire, and modernism in the arts and politics.


University of California, Berkeley, M.A., 1983
University of California, Berkeley, Ph.D., 1988
University of Rochester, B.A., 1981

Steven Kotkin’s full CV online