Skip to main content

Northwestern Buffett Institute for Global Affairs

Deborah Cohen

deborah_cohen_170px_v2.pngDeborah Cohen is the Executive Director of the Northwestern Buffett Institute for Global Affairs and Richard W. Leopold Professor of History at the Weinberg College of Arts & Sciences.



Deborah Cohen's research areas are modern European history and global history.  Her interests run the methodological gamut, from social science-inspired comparative history to biography.  Trained as a modern Europeanist (with specialties in Germany and Great Britain) she has recently published on Anglo-Argentines and the history of family capitalism and on American foreign correspondents.  
Cohen's new book is Last Call at the Hotel Imperial: The Reporters Who Took on a World at War (Random House and William Collins, 2022).  It won the Mark Lynton History Prize (Nieman Foundation/Columbia School of Journalism), the Goldsmith Prize (Shorenstein Center/Harvard Kennedy School) and the Ralph Waldo Emerson Prize (Phi Beta Kappa).  It was named a best book of the year by the New Yorker, NPR, Vanity Fair, BookPage and Booklist.
Cohen was elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences in 2018.  She has held fellowships from the Mellon Foundation, the National Humanities Center, the Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers at the New York Public Library, the American Council of Learned Societies (Frederick Burkhardt Fellowship for Recently Tenured Scholars) and the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. She was awarded the Clarence ver Steeg Faculty Award by Northwestern for her work with graduate students and the Charles Deering McCormick Professorship (2015–2018) for excellence in teaching.
Cohen writes regularly for the Atlantic on subjects ranging from war photography to punk rock and has reviewed for the New York Review of Books, the London Review of Books and the Wall Street Journal.  
She serves on the editorial board of Past & Present and with Margot Finn and Peter Mandler, co-edits the Cambridge University Press book series, Modern British Histories.