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Department of Political Science

Head of the Department of Economics, Statistics
and Political Science
Davis R. Dewey 1903-1907
Head of the Department of History and Political Science
Charles F. A. Currier 1907-1918
Heads of the Department of Political Science
Robert C. Wood 1965-1966
Ithiel de Sola Pool 1966-1969
Robert C. Wood 1969-1970
Eugene B. Skolnikoff 1970-1974
Myron Weiner 1974-1977
Alan A. Altshuler 1977-1981
Donald L. M. Blackmer 1982-1989
Suzanne D. Berger 1989-1992
Richard J. Samuels 1992-1997
Joshua Cohen 1997-2004
Charles H. Stewart III 2005-2010
Richard M. Locke 2010-2013
Melissa Nobles 2013-2015
Andrea Campbell 2015-2019
David A. Singer 2019-

Early courses in political science were taught as part of Course IX, General Studies, until 1903 when the Department of Economics, Statistics, and Political Science was established. In 1907 the department was reorganized as the Department of Economics and Statistics, and political science became part of the Department of History and Political Science. In 1918 Charles Currier, the head of the department, became ill, and a temporary merging of History with English became permanent the following year.

Course XIV, Economics and Social Science, began offering classes in Political Science again in 1944 when Norman J. Padelford joined the faculty to teach classes in international relations. In 1956 the department was reorganized into three sections, including political science, with Padelford as section head. In that year the faculty authorized an S.B. degree in Economics, Politics, and Engineering; in 1958 a Ph.D. in Political Science was approved. In 1965 the political science section became Course XVII, the Department of Political Science.

Prepared by the Department of Distinctive Collections, MIT Libraries
March 1998; Updated: June 2016, April 2020