Irving Schneider and Family Building (Heller School), 105
Departments/ProgramsThe Heller School for Social Policy and Management
DegreesStanford University, Ph.D.
Brandeis University, B.A.
ExpertiseInternational and comparative education policy; educational opportunity and social mobility; leadership development; social policy and democratic governance in developing countries
Project design, management, implementation and evaluation
Extensive field experience in Brazil and Latin America
ProfileDr. Joan Dassin is Professor of International Education and Development and Director of the MA Program in Sustainable International Development (SID). She comes to the Heller School after spending the 2013-2014 academic year at the Centre for Latin American Studies and St Antony’s College, University of Oxford, where she conducted research on how educational opportunity for young people in the developing world leads to personal empowerment and social transformation. The study is based on her experience as the founding Executive Director of the Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program (IFP), a global scholarship program that operated from 2000 to 2013. IFP enabled more than 4,300 social justice leaders in Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and Russia to pursue graduate-level studies at the world’s top universities. In June 2011 Dr. Dassin received the Marita Houlihan Award for Distinguished Contributions to International Education from NAFSA: Association of International Educators, an independent organization with more than 10,000 members. Dr. Dassin previously served as the Ford Foundation’s Regional Director for Latin America and Country Representative, Brazil Office, based in Rio de Janerio. She has given many interviews in national and international media and has published articles and books on social justice in international education, leadership development, human rights, and freedom of expression.
Dr. Dassin has held academic positions at Columbia and Fordham Universities and at Amherst College. She earned a PhD from Stanford University in Modern Thought and Literature and has been the recipient of three Fulbright Scholar Awards for teaching and research in Brazil.
Awards and Honors
Marita Houlihan Award for Distinguished Contributions to International Education (NAFSA: Association of International Educators (2011)
Honorary Citizenship, São Carlos, Brazil (By Vote of São Carlos Municipal Legislature) (2007)
Fulbright Advanced Scholar Serial Teaching and Research Grant (Brazil, 1998; 1999) University of São Paulo at São Carlos. Topic: Educational Innovation in Brazil (1998)
Fulbright Teaching and Research Grant (Brazil, 1985), University of São Paulo and Federal University of Rio de Janeiro. Topic: Literature and Historical Memory (1985)
Best Article Prize, Latin American Studies Association (1982)
Fulbright Professorship of American Literature (Brazil, 1976-77) Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro. Topic: Women's Literature and Contemporary Anti-War Fiction (1976)
Dissertation Research Grant, Social Science Research Council (Brazil) (1971)
Phi Beta Kappa, Brandeis University (1969)
Louis Dembitz Brandeis Honorary Scholarship (1967)
Dassin, Joan, Jurgen Enders and Andrea Kottmann. ""Social Inclusion in International Higher Education and Leadership for Social Justice: The Approach and Achievements of the Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program." Leadership and Social Inclusion in International Higher Education. Ed. Terry Bigalke and Mary Zurbuchen. New York: Palgrave MacMillan, 2014
Dassin, Joan, Jurgen Enders and Andrea Kottmann. "Social Inclusiveness, Development and Student Mobility in International Higher Education: The Case of the Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program." Internationalization of Higher Education and Global Mobility. Ed. Bernard Thomas Streitwieser. Oxford: Oxford Series on Higher Education, 2014
Dassin, Joan. "Opening Opportunities in International Higher Education." The Chronicle of Higher Education December 1, 2011.
Dassin, Joan, Rachel Clift and Mary Zurbuchen. The Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program: Linking Higher Education to Social Change. New York: Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program, 2013.
Bernd Wächter, Queenie K.H. Lam and Irina Ferencz, ed. Social Inclusion and Excellent in International Education: Necessary, Achievable and Compatible goals. Brussels: ACA Papers on International Cooperation, 2012.