Mathieu Denis named Executive Director of International Social Science Council


Mathieu Denis speaking at a 2015 CGIAR event on closing the gender gap in agriculture

The Executive Committee of the International Social Science Council (ISSC) announced today that Dr Mathieu Denis has been appointed Executive Director of the organization. He will take over leadership of the ISSC’s international Secretariat based in Paris, France.

Previously acting Executive Director (science) at the ISSC, Mathieu Denis is a historian with experience in research and international science coordination. Denis said he’s “excited and honoured” to take over leadership of the ISSC at this important moment in the organization’s history.

“We have grown substantially over the past years, and have given a renewed significance and relevance for the ISSC. Our organisation is now playing a central role as mobiliser and coordinator in major international initiatives, such as the Science and Technology Alliance for Global Sustainability – the consortium of international organizations governing Future Earth -, or the Science and Technology Major Group, which coordinated the input of science in the UN Open Working Group on the Sustainable Development Goals. Our most exciting challenge in the coming years will be to strengthen this position and role. We must continue increasing the contribution of social sciences in joint efforts by international science organizations to collaborate and coordinate responses to global priority challenges,” said Denis.

Mathieu Denis was a post-doctoral researcher on the 2010 World Social Science Report on Knowledge Divides, and later joined the ISSC in 2012 as Science Officer. He has supervised the scientific activities of the Council, including the organisation of the World Social Science Fora in 2013 and 2015. Of his nomination, ISSC President Alberto Martinelli said:

“I am glad that Mathieu Denis has accepted the position of Executive Director. He knows our organisation and its members very well. I have had the pleasure of working with him over the past few years. He has the vision and leadership skills necessary to take the ISSC into the next stage of its history.”

The Executive Committee expressed their thanks to Vivi Stavrou, who has acted as Executive Director (management) over the past 8 months.

Mathieu Denis’s background is in social and economic history. A Canadian national, he has a PhD from the Humboldt University in Berlin, Germany. He has previously taught history, political theory and industrial relations at Université du Québec à Montréal, and Université de Montréal. Prior to joining the ISSC, Mathieu Denis had worked as researcher at the Berlin Social Science Centre and the Canadian Centre for German and European Studies.

Denis takes up his position as Executive Director today.