2006 Distinguished Contributions to Slavic Studies Award Winner
James R. Millar has a lifetime of scholarly and professional contributions to the field of Slavic Studies. An economist trained at the University of Texas, Harvard University, and Cornell University, Professor Millar has been a leading participant in many of the most essential scholarly and professional debates of the past half-century within the study of centrally planned economies, the Soviet Union, and post-Soviet Russia. From 1989 to 2001, he directed the Institute for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies at George Washington University, where he was also Professor of Economics and International Affairs until his retirement in 2004. Previously, he served as Director of International Programs and Studies and Professor of Economics at the University of Illinois.
Professor Millar is the author and editor of several books, as well as author and co-author of nearly 100 articles and book chapters. Many of his colleagues consider two of his volumes: The Soviet Rural Community (1971), and Politics, Work, and Daily Life in the USSR (1987) to be classics in the field. His analysis of the cost of World War II to the Soviet Union similarly informed many debates in our field, while his re-analysis of the work of A.V. Chayanov forced many to reconsider the nature of the peasant economy in Russia.
Few colleagues have shown such exceptional dedication to the professional development of the field. Professor Millar has served as editor of the Slavic Review; editor of Problems of Post-Communism; President, Vice President, and Treasurer of the AAASS; member of the boards of directors of the International Research and Exchanges Board (IREX), and the National Council for Eurasian and East European Research (NCEEER); Treasurer of the American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS); founder and director of the Soviet Interview Project; and, one of the founders of the University of Illinois Summer Institute in Slavic Studies.
Professor Millar has trained numerous graduate students and has served as a mentor to countless young scholars who have continued on to make their own substantial contributions to our field.
For recognition of his service to the field as a scholar, teacher, mentor, and leader, the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies bestows its highest honor on James R. Millar.