Robert C. Tucker/Stephen F. Cohen Dissertation Prize

The Robert C. Tucker/Stephen F. Cohen Dissertation Prize, established in 2006 and sponsored by the KAT Charitable Foundation, is awarded annually (if there is a distinguished submission) for an outstanding English-language doctoral dissertation in Soviet or Post-Soviet politics and history in the tradition practiced by Robert C. Tucker and Stephen F. Cohen. The dissertation must be defended at an American or Canadian university, and must be completed during the calendar year prior to the award. The prize carries a $6,000 award intended to help the author turn the dissertation into a publishable manuscript. The prize is awarded at the ASEEES Annual Convention.

Rules of Eligibility

Rules of eligibility for the ASEEES Robert C. Tucker/Stephen F. Cohen Dissertation Prize are as follows:

  • The book must be an author’s first published monograph or work of synthesis.
  • The publication date inside the book must list the previous calendar year as the date of publication. For example, the book must have been a publication date of 2023 to be eligible for the 2024 competition. If no publication date is listed, the copyright date will be taken as the publication date.
  • The book must be published in English and in North America.
  • Authors may be of any nationality.
  • The geographic area of study is broadly defined as the territories of the former imperial Russian state and the Soviet Union. The book may deal with any period of history.
  • Textbooks, translations (including self-translations), reference works, or edited collections of essays are not eligible.
  • Self-published works are also ineligible.
  • Books that have received other prizes are eligible.

Nominating Instructions

A nomination will consist of a detailed letter from the dissertation’s main faculty supervisor explaining the ways in which the work is outstanding in both its empirical and interpretive contributions, along with an abstract of 700-1000 words, written by the candidate, specifying the sources and general findings of the research. A faculty supervisor may nominate no more than one dissertation a year.

Faculty supervisors should send each committee member listed below their letter and the 700-1000-word abstract. (Candidates may also initiate the nomination, but it must come from their advisers.) The committee will read this material and then request copies of the dissertations that best meet the criteria, as defined in the statement above. Nominations must be received no later than May 15.

2024 Tucker/Cohen Dissertation Prize Committee

The winner of the Tucker/Cohen Dissertation Prize will be chosen by the following scholars:

Kathleen Smith, Georgetown University, 2022-2024

Melissa Chakars
St. Joseph’s University, 2023-2025

Alexis Peri
Boston University, 2022-2024

(For customs use): Please mark the nominated books as “gift” to alert Customs that this is not a commercial shipment/to insure the recipient does not have to pay for the items.

Past Winners

Robert C. Tucker/Stephen F. Cohen Dissertation Prize

More ASEEES Prizes

See more Prizes
  • Beth Holmgren Graduate Student Essay Prize

    The Beth Holmgren Graduate Student Essay Prize is awarded for an outstanding essay by a graduate student in Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies.

    Read more

  • W. Bruce Lincoln Book Prize

    The W. Bruce Lincoln Book Prize is awarded annually for an author's first published monograph or scholarly synthesis that is of exceptional merit and lasting significance for the understanding of Russia's past.

    Read more

  • Kulczycki Book Prize in Polish Studies

    The Kulczycki Book Prize in Polish Studies is awarded annually for the best book in any discipline, on any aspect of Polish affairs, published in the previous calendar year.

    Read more