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Kenneth Prewitt joined the faculty of SIPA in 2002 as the Carnegie Professor of Public Affairs. Professor Prewitt's research includes the use of ethnoracial classification in national statistics and the recent changes the classification has undergone. He serves on many professional advisory committees and is currently most active on the Committee on National Statistics of the National Research Council.
Professor Prewitt's publications include Politics and Science in Census Taking, Introduction to American Government (6th edition, 1991), and "The U.S. Decennial Census: Political Questions, Scientific Answers," Population and Development Review. He has authored or co-authored a dozen books and more than 100 articles and book chapters.
Professor Prewitt also has had a long professional career outside the classroom, as Director of the U.S. Census Bureau (1998-2001), Director of the National Opinion Research Center, President of the Social Science Research Council, and Senior Vice President of the Rockefeller Foundation. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Academy of Political and Social Science, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Center for the Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences. Other awards include honorary degrees from Carnegie Mellon University and Southern Methodist University; in 1990 he was awarded the Officer's Cross of the Order of Merit from the Federal Republic of Germany.
He earned his B.A. from Southern Methodist University in 1958. He received an M.A. from Washington University in 1959, and attended the Harvard Divinity School in 1960 as a Danforth Fellow. In 1963, he earned his Ph.D. in political science from Stanford University. From 1965 to 1982 he taught at the University of Chicago as an Assistant, Associate and Full Professor. His other academic apppointments include Dean of the Graduate Faculty at the New School University (2001-2002) and faculty positions at Stanford University, Washington University, the University of Nairobi, and Makerere University (Uganda).