The University of Iowa

Kelly Kadera named recipient of the 2016 Susan S. Northcutt award

April 21st, 2016

The University of Iowa congratulates Director of Academic Programs Kelly Kadera as the recipient of the 2016 Susan S. Northcutt award.

The Susan S. Northcutt Award was established in 2003 by the Women's Caucus of International Studies (WCIS) to honor the caucus' founder, Susan S. Northcutt. The award recognizes a person who actively works toward recruiting and advancing women and other minorities in the profession, and has made significant contributions through service and competence in the profession of international studies and to the International Studies Association (ISA).

In a statement issued by the ISA, Kadera is recognized as “…very deserving of the Susan Northcutt award because much of her mentoring and service efforts have explicitly focused on the promotion of women and minorities in political science and international relations.”


(left to right) Paul Diehl (president of the International Studies Association and professor at the University of Texas), Kelly M. Kadera (director of academic programs for International Programs at the University of Iowa ), Susan S. Northcutt (professor at the University of Florida)

“I feel like the Queen of the Slipstream,” said Kadera in reaction to the award. “That’s because lots of path-breaking, smart women like Susan Northcutt worked hard to break down barriers to women’s success in the academy. They crossed many waters so that I could be here. Female scholars do, of course, still face a lot of challenges. We still have a leaky pipeline, our research is less likely to be cited or used in syllabi, implicit biases affect our teaching evaluations and letters of recommendations, many of our universities pay us less than men, and surveys indicate we still face chilly climates.”

To help counteract such challenges, Kadera runs a mentoring workshop called Journeys in World Politics with Sara Mitchell, professor of political science and department chair at the University of Iowa. The workshop is funded by the National Science Foundation (with previous support from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the Department of Political Science). She’s also the founding organizer of the Pay It Forward mentoring workshop, sponsored by the ISA Committee on the Status of Women.

 “Not only do other senior women and I get to see the savvy research being done by today’s young female scholars, we get to see the successes of our alumnae as they publish books and articles, achieve tenure, and become disciplinary leaders,” said Kadera. “So while there is a long way to go, we can also say that we’ve come far enough to know that the contents of the dream are visible.”

Kelly Kadera is also the author of The Power Conflict Story, which addresses a long-standing debate in the field of international relations concerning the relationship between power and conflict. She has contributed important scholarship to other debates in international relations, including democratic peace, with publications in the American Journal of Political Science and International Studies Quarterly (ISQ), as well as several published papers on gender issues in academia. She has served as the co-program chair for the 2008 ISA conference, was elected as a vice president of ISA in 2015-2016, and chairs the James Rosenau Post-doctoral Fellowship Committee. Kadera is the lead editor (along with Laura Sjoberg) of the International Studies Review and, in her capacity as editor, has worked to publish more research by female scholars in ISA and to ensure proper citations to work by women in the profession. Kadera serves on the editorial board for the Lexington book series, Innovations in the Study of World Politics, and on the editorial boards of three other journals: International Interactions, The Journal of Politics, and International Studies Quarterly.