Stephen Kotkin

John P. Birkelund '52 Professor in History and International Affairs, emeritus

Professor Kotkin has been teaching in the department since 1989. He holds a joint appointment in the Princeton School for Public and International Affairs at Princeton. He is also a Research Scholar at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University.

Professor Kotkin established the Princeton department's Global History initiative and workshop, and teaches the graduate seminar on global history since the 1850s. He served on the core editorial committee of the World Politics, flagship journal in comparative politics. He founded and co-edited a book series on Northeast Asia that published six volumes. 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. He has been the vice dean of the Princeton School for Public and International Affairs (formerly Woodrow Wilson School for Public and International Affairs) and acting director of the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies (PIIRS). In 2014-15 he is serving as acting director of what is now Russian, East European, and Eurasian studies. Outside Princeton, from 2006 (until taking a break in February 2009) he was the regular book reviewer for the New York Times Sunday Business section.

His latest book is Stalin: Waiting for Hitler, 1929-1941 (Penguin, 2017).

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

Area of Interest
Economic History
Imperial History
Political History
Home Department & Other Affiliations
Princeton School of Public & International Affairs
19th Century
20th Century