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SCJ Dean Pridemore Named an AAAS Fellow 

Dean William Pridemore was cited by AAAS for his scholarly and administrative contributions to the field of criminology. (Photo by Stephanie Snyder)

ALBANY, N.Y. (Dec. 3, 2019) — William Alex Pridemore, dean of the University at Albany’s School of Criminal Justice, has been named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the world’s largest general scientific society and publisher of the journal Science.

Pridemore was cited for his administrative and scholarly contributions to criminology, including significant contributions to the cross-national study of homicides and alcohol abuse. He is one of just nine new AAAS fellows from the social, economic and political sciences.

“Dr. Pridemore has distinguished himself internationally as a scholar while at the helm of UAlbany’s School of Criminal Justice, one of the top-ranking institutions in the field,” said UAlbany Provost and Senior Vice President Carol H. Kim. “Being named an AAAS fellow is another well-deserved honor.”

Pridemore joined the School of Criminal Justice in 2015 as dean and professor, and in 2017 was named a distinguished professor, the highest faculty achievement in the SUNY system. Before joining UAlbany, he was a distinguished professor at Georgia State University, a professor at Indiana University and a postdoctoral researcher at Harvard University.

He is the 12th AAAS fellow from UAlbany in its modern history, the most recent being Lance Bosart (2013, Atmospheric Sciences); Eric Block (2012, Chemistry); Marlene Belfort (2007, Biological Sciences); and Lawrence Schell (2007, Anthropology). Six faculty members from the New York State College for Teachers, which became UAlbany, also were AAAS fellows.

“Bill Pridemore’s research appears in top tier journals and is an exemplar of interdisciplinary research excellence,” said UAlbany’s Vice President for Research James Dias. “His groundbreaking work on poverty and cross-national homicide rates challenges longstanding theoretical beliefs, measurement practice and research standards. Being inducted as an AAAS fellow adds to his previous career research awards, including the Freda Adler Distinguished Scholar Award from the American Society of Criminology and the Gerhard O.W. Mueller Distinguished Scholar Award from the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences.”

Pridemore’s primary research interests include the impact of social structure on homicide and suicide rates, and the role of alcohol in violence and mortality. He is a founding editorial board member of the Annual Review of Criminology, and was the founding director of Indiana University’s Workshop in Methods.

He has been the principal or co-principal investigator on grants totaling more than $2.5 million, and has published more than 100 articles in peer-reviewed journals in criminology, public health, substance abuse and sociology. For more than a decade he has been the American Society of Criminology’s liaison to AAAS.

He received his undergraduate and master’s degrees in criminal justice from Indiana University and his PhD from UAlbany in 2000. His research has been funded by multiple agencies, including the National Institute of Justice, National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation.

“Dean Pridemore has distinguished himself as a stellar comparative criminologist, authoring more international, comparative and cross-national articles in his discipline’s leading journals than any other scholar,” said Alan Lizotte, distinguished professor and former dean of the School of Criminal Justice. “One of the first scholars to gain access to previously unavailable data following the collapse of the Soviet Union, his criminological research on Russia was groundbreaking, using the data to examine trends of violence and to test fundamental criminological and sociological theory.”

Pridemore also has researched crime, drug use, suicide and homelessness in Iran, another nation where obtaining data is difficult. His research in the United States and abroad has gained him an international reputation, leading to invited presentations in Australia, Canada, Estonia, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland and Ukraine, among other countries.

This year’s fellows will be formally announced in the AAAS News & Notes section of the journal Science on Nov. 29. They also will be honored on Feb. 15 during the 2020 AAAS Annual Meeting in Seattle, Washington.

The tradition of naming AAAS fellows began in 1874. Fellows are nominated by their peers for scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications; the final selection rests with the AAAS Council, the policymaking body of the association. There are a total of 443 new fellows this year across the disciplines.

AAAS was founded in 1848 and includes more than 250 affiliated societies and academies of science, serving 10 million individuals. In addition to Science, which has the largest paid circulation of any peer-reviewed general science journal in the world, AAAS publishes Science Translational Medicine; Science Signaling; a digital, open-access journal, Science Advances; Science Immunology; and Science Robotics.

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