Diana C. Mutz Receives the APSA Best Book Award

The APSA Best Book Award is presented annually by the American Political Science Association (APSA) to honor the best book on government, politics, or international affairs. This year we have co-winners for the ASPA Best Book Award: Diana C. Mutz for her work, Winners and Losers: The Psychology of Foreign Trade; and Cigdem V. Sirin, Nicholas A. Valentino, and Jose D. Villalobos for their work Seeing Us in Them: Social Divisions and the Politics of Group Empathy.

Diana C. Mutz, author of Winners and Losers: The Psychology of Foreign Trade, holds the Samuel A. Stouffer Chair in Political Science and Communication at the University of Pennsylvania where she also serves as Director of the Institute for the Study of Citizens and Politics.

She has published articles on public opinion, political psychology and the media in a wide variety of academic journals.  Her previous books include Impersonal Influence: How Perceptions of Mass Collectives Affect Political Attitudes (Cambridge University Press, 1998), Hearing the Other Side: Deliberative Versus Participatory Democracy (Cambridge University Press, 2006), Population-based Survey Experiments (Princeton University Press, 2011) and In-Your-Face Politics: The Consequences of Uncivil Media (Princeton University Press, 2015).

In 2011, Mutz received the Lifetime Career Achievement Award in Political Communication.  She was inducted as a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2008.  In support of her research, she received a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2015 and a Carnegie Foundation Fellowship in 2016 to study the impact of globalization on American public opinion.  In 2021, she was inducted as a member of the National Academy of Sciences.

Citation from the Award Committee: 

In Winners and Losers: The Psychology of Foreign Trade, Diana Mutz tackles a question that has great importance for contemporary political debates – what explains public attitudes towards international trade?  Against the prevailing scholarly wisdom, Mutz argues that these attitudes are not purely the result of economic self-interest; rather, psychological forces, such as the perception of status loss among the national ingroup, are key to understanding whether people see trade as a competitive struggle for dominance or as a set of transactions that can bring mutual benefits to all.  Mutz uses a wealth of observational and experimental evidence from the United States to test her original theory, and she extends her research to Canada to demonstrate the theory’s application beyond the U.S. context.  Her work thus speaks to scholarship in comparative politics, American politics, and international relations.  The book’s findings should influence research on the economic reasoning of the mass public well beyond trade and shed light on one of the most important developments of recent years – the rise of populist politics.

APSA thanks the committee members for their service: Kimberly J. Morgan (chair) of George Washington University, Professor Eva Anduiza of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Dr. Karam Dana of the University of Washington, Dr. Hans J.G. Hassell of Florida State University, and Dr. Nils Ringe of the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

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