Herbert Kelman

Herbert Kelman

Richard Clarke Cabot Professor of Social Ethics, Emeritus, Harvard University

Herbert Kelman is the Richard Clarke Cabot Professor of Social Ethics, emeritus, at Harvard University and was the director of the Program on International Conflict Analysis and Resolution at Harvard’s Weatherhead Center for International Affairs.

He is the past president of the International Studies Association, the International Society of Political Psychology, the Interamerican Society of Psychology, and several other professional associations. He is the recipient of many awards, including the Socio-Psychological Prize of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (1956), the Kurt Lewin Memorial Award (1973), the American Psychological Association’s Award for Distinguished Contributions to Psychology in the Public Interest (1981), the Grawemeyer Award for Ideas Improving World Order (1997), and the Austrian Medal of Honor for Science and Art First Class (1998). Kelman has been engaged for many years in the development of interactive problem solving, an unofficial third-party approach to the resolution of international and intercommunal conflicts, and in its application to the Arab-Israeli conflict, with special emphasis on its Israeli-Palestinian component.


B.A., Brooklyn College

B.H.L., Seminary College of Jewish Studies

M.S., Yale University

Ph.D., Yale University 

Research interests

Attitudes, attitude change, and social influence; international conflict and conflict resolution; nationalism and national identity; ethics of social research; Israeli-Palestinian relations; political violence and human rights

Selected publications

  • “A ‘Declaration of Principles’ for the Mideast.” Boston Globe, March 9, 2008, op-ed page K9.
  • “Preconditions in Mideast Negotiations.” Boston Globe, March 30, 2007, op-ed page A17.
  • “Beyond the Gaza Disengagement.” Boston Globe, August 15, 2005, op-ed page A11.
  • “The Development of Interactive Problem Solving: In John Burton’s Footsteps.” Political Psychology 36, no. 2 (2015): 243–262.
  • “Social Psychology and the Study of Peace: Personal Reflections.” In The Oxford Handbook of Intergroup Conflict, edited by L. Tropp, 361–372. Oxford University Press, 2012.
  • “A One-Country/Two-State Solution to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.” Middle East Policy Journal 18, no. 1 (2011) :27–41.



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