FIS Ph.D. dissertation award to be announced 11/15



FIS 2017 best Ph.D. dissertation award winner was announced November 15, 2017

Dissertations accepted and placed in competition were received from the following instituitions:

Faculty of Letters University of Porto/School of English University of Kent, the Erasmus Mundus PhD programme, ‘TEEME; Harvard University; Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Iran; University of Cambridge; University of Chicago; Stanford University; and two dissertations from Yale University.  





Best Ph.D. Disertation Award on a Subject of Iranian Studies, 2017

November 15, 2017


The Foundation for Iranian Studies is pleased to announce that the Committee on Selection of the Best Ph.D. Dissertation of the Year on a Topic of Iranian Studies of the Foundation for Iranian Studies has chosen Kusha Sefat’s dissertation “Tehran: The Politics of Things” submitted to the Board of Graduate Studies, Queen’s College, University of Cambridge, as the recipient of the Foundation's annual Ph.D. dissertation award for the academic year 2016-2017.


In making its decision, the Committee, following the criteria established by the Foundation’s Board of Directors, noted that Kusha Sefat has made an "exceptional contribution to the field of Iranian Studies” by, among other achievements, “stating clearly the study’s problematic… constructing an original, intellectually fecund, and conceptually productive theoretical framework for the analysis and explication of political sociology of the Iranian revolution of 1979 and the dynamics of the post-revolutionary politics …developing and employing successfully a rigorous methodology to bring together a significant array of primary and secondary sources, including relevant literature, politically instrumental media, and critical information secured through interviews judiciously conducted in the field in Tehran and elsewhere… adopting an innovative approach to the study of links between public objects and words and their effect on the development and structuring of political fields… methodically connecting data, text, and speech to construct a credible framework for discerning and evaluating how confluence of public object and discourse shaped a determinative political field in the revolution as well as in each of the first three decades of post-revolutionary Iran, and by extension, potential applicability of the lessons derived to studies of other historically relevant events … excellent organization of the work.”


The Committee also cited Austin O’Malley’s dissertation “Poetry and Pedagogy: The Homiletic Verse of Farid al-Din `Attar” submitted to the Faculty of the Division of Humanities, University of Chicago, and Waleed Ziad’s dissertation “Traversing the Indus and the Oxus: Trans-Regional Islamic Revival in the Age of Political Fragmentation and the ‘Great Game’, 1747-1880” submitted to the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Yale University, with honorable mention for superior scholarship, originality, clarity, and significant contribution to Iranian Studies.


Notice of the awards will appear in the Foundation’s interactive web, MESA and AIS journals, and in various Persian and English language academic publications.


Gholam Reza Afkhami


Ph.D. Dissertation Awards Committee




To access the list of the award winners Click



For further information about the award, selection criteria, and previous winners consult the Foundation for Iranian Studies Website at www.fis-iran.org, Programs, Dissertation Awards. Inquiries should be emailed to fis@fis-iran.org.