Silver elected to American Academy of Arts & Sciences

  • Roxane Cohen-Silver

Distinguished Professor Roxane Cohen Silver. Photo by Steve Zylius

Distinguished professor recognized as expert on coping with trauma

Acclaimed psychologist Roxane Cohen Silver from the University of California, Irvine – whose groundbreaking studies on stress and coping have advanced our understanding of how traumatic incidents like terror attacks, infectious disease outbreaks and natural disasters affect us – has been elected a member by the American Academy of Arts & Sciences

The 244th class of AAAS inductees includes 250 exceptional individuals from around the globe, honored for their excellence and success in academia, the arts, industry, public policy and research.

“This is an outstanding recognition of the extraordinary accomplishments of Professor Silver, who is one of the world leaders in her field,” said Hal Stern, UC Irvine provost and executive vice chancellor. “This is yet another illustration of the remarkable achievements of UC Irvine’s faculty, which includes 47 members of the National Academies and 38 members of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences.”

Jon Gould, dean of the School of Social Ecology, agreed.

“The school is immensely proud of Professor Silver,” Gould said. “Election to the Academy is one of the highest honors a scholar can receive, and she is most deserving.”

Silver is a Distinguished Professor of psychological science, medicine and public health at UC Irvine. She has spent more than four decades studying acute and long-term psychological and physical reactions to stressful life experiences, including personal traumas such as loss, physical disability and childhood sexual victimization, as well as larger collective events like mass violence, pandemics, wars and natural disasters across the world.

Her research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the National Institute of Mental Health, the Department of Homeland Security and the Public Health Service. Silver has guided governments in the U.S. and abroad in the aftermath of terrorist attacks and earthquakes and has served on senior advisory committees and task forces for the Department of Homeland Security, providing insight on the psychological impact of disasters and terrorism. She has also testified twice before the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Science, Space and Technology and given several briefings to policymakers at the White House and on Capitol Hill on the role of social and behavioral science research in disaster preparedness and response and the effect of the media following disasters.

“I am honored to have been elected a fellow by the American Academy of Arts & Sciences,” said Silver, who has received numerous accolades for her scholarly and teaching achievements. “I have spent most of my career at UC Irvine and have received incredible support from wonderful colleagues, students, postdocs and staff here.”

With her election, UC Irvine has 40 current and former scholars as AAAS members. Silver earned a Ph.D. in social psychology at Northwestern University and joined UC Irvine’s faculty in 1989. She also serves as the vice provost for institutional research, assessment and planning.

The American Academy of Arts & Sciences, founded in 1780, is one of the nation’s oldest learned societies and independent policy research centers, convening elected members from the academic, business and government sectors to respond to challenges facing the nation and the world.

The 2024 inductees join a distinguished roster of previously elected members, including Benjamin Franklin (elected in 1781), Alexander Hamilton (1791), Ralph Waldo Emerson (1864), Charles Darwin (1874), Albert Einstein (1924), Robert Frost (1931), Margaret Mead (1948), Milton Friedman (1959), Martin Luther King Jr. (1966), Stephen Hawking (1984), Gabriel Garcia Marquez (1984), Condoleezza Rice (1997), John Legend (2017), James Fallows (2019), Joan Baez (2020) and Sanjay Gupta (2021). Current members represent today’s innovative thinkers in every field and profession, including more than 250 Nobel and Pulitzer Prize winners.

Learn more about members elected from 1781–2023 in the Academy’s online directory.


Mimi Ko Cruz
Director of Communications