Margaret Levi is the Sara Miller McCune Director of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS) at Stanford University, professor of political science at Stanford, and senior fellow at Woods Institute for the Environment. She is the Jere L. Bacharach Professor Emerita in political science at University of Washington, where she was director of the CHAOS (Comparative Historical Analysis of Organizations and States) Center and formerly the Director of the Harry Bridges Center for Labor Studies. She was a John Simon Guggenheim Fellow (2002-3) and is an elected member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2001), the National Academy of Sciences (2015), the American Academy of Political and Social Sciences (2016), and the American Philosophical Society (2018). She served as president of the American Political Science Association in 2004-5. In 2014 she received the William H. Riker Prize in Political Science. In 2019 she was named the 25th laureate of the Johan Skytte Prize in Political Science. The prize was awarded to Levi for “having laid the foundations of our understanding of why citizens accept state coercion, by combining theoretical acumen and historical knowledge.
Levi is the author or coauthor of numerous articles and seven books. Her research investigates the conditions under which people come to believe their governments and organizations are legitimate and the consequences of those beliefs for compliance, consent, and the rule of law. Other work considers the future of workers.
She was general editor of Cambridge Studies in Comparative Politics and is co-general editor of the Annual Review of Political Science. Levi and her husband, Robert Kaplan, are avid collectors of Australian Aboriginal art. Ancestral Modern, an exhibition drawn from their collection, was on view at the Seattle Art Museum (SAM) in 2012. Yale University Press and SAM co-published the catalogue, which is now available digitally.