Psychology professor picked for prestigious fellowship

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Psychology professor Kevin Carlsmith has been awarded a one-year fellowship at the prestigious Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University.

Carlsmith hopes the collaboration with other top scholars at the center will provide valuable insights into his research that focuses on attitudes about torture and aggressive interrogation techniques.

About two dozen fellowships, which are extremely competitive, are awarded each year to scholars from a diverse range of fields that include the five core social and behavioral disciplines of anthropology, economics, political science, psychology, and sociology.

Most scholars at the center are from much larger research institutions such as Michigan, Princeton, and the University of Chicago.

Carlsmith believes he is the first faculty member selected from Colgate, and he is excited about the prospect of approaching his research, which is funded through the National Science Foundation, in innovative ways that cross disciplines.

He is, for example, collaborating with a legal historian who studies the legal and political history of torture, and a sociologist who studies genocide.

“The center creates an environment that encourages both quiet contemplation as well as sustained interaction with top scholars from related disciplines,” he said. “It offers us a full year of uninterrupted study and the opportunity for creative insights that can be difficult in the context of busy academic lives.”