Alberto Palloni - 2019 Laureate


The IUSSP Council elected Alberto Palloni as the 2019 IUSSP Laureate in recognition of his exceptional contribution to the field of population and service to the IUSSP.


For more details on Alberto Palloni's accomplishments and contributions to the population field please read the letter of nomination.

The IUSSP Laureate was awarded to Alberto Palloni during a ceremony that took place during the PAA 2019 Annual Meeting in Austin, Texas on April 10, 2019. The ceremony included speeches by Tom LeGrand, Sam Preston, Hiram Beltram-Sanchez and Jenna Nobles.


Nomination for Alberto Palloni


Alberto Palloni received a BS/BA in Sociology at the Catholic University of Chile, a certificate in Mathematical Statistics from the Center for Mathematical Statistics in Chile, and a PhD in Sociology from the University of Washington. Alberto Palloni was the Samuel H. Preston and E.T. Young Professor of Population and International Studies at the University of Wisconsin- Madison and is currently an Emeritus Professor of Sociology at UW-Madison and senior demographer at RAND Labor and Population Unit. He has been in the faculty of the University of Texas-Austin, University of Michigan, University of Chicago, Northwestern University, and University of Wisconsin-Madison. Palloni’s international recognition in population studies is testified by his many positions as visiting Professor including positions in Italy (University of Rome, Universities of Florence, University of Siena, and University of Padua), Brazil (University of Minas Gerais), Costa Rica (Centro Centroamericano de Población, Universidad de Costa Rica), and Mexico (El Colegio de Mexico).

His stature in and beyond demography and population studies is attested by the large number of prestigious awards he has received. He was elected Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences, Fellow of the Sociological Research Association, and elected President of the Population Association of America in 2006 —the highest honor for any demographer and population scientist. Palloni has also been recognized for his research contributions, including Fellowships from the Ford Foundation and the Population Council, Guggenheim Fellow, Fellow in the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University, Doctor Honoris Causa, from the Universitѐ Catholique de Louvain-Belgium, and a Merit Scholar from the US National Institutes of Health (NIH).

As an example of the significance of these awards, consider that the Merit scholar award represents the highest distinction from the NIH to a researcher: fewer than 5 percent of all NIH researchers are granted such awards. It is given to “support impressive records of scientific achievement in research areas of special importance or promise.” Eligible scientists must have a record of at least seven years of continuous NIH support; be a leader in their field with “paradigm-shifting ideas;” and have potential for high levels of future productivity.


Throughout his brilliant career, Palloni has also advised international institutions on population matters: the U.S. government on Decennial Census methodologies, the World Health Organization on the Global Program on AIDS, the US National Institute of Child Health and Human Development through the Population Research sub-committee, the US National Research Council, and is a frequent advisor on population issues at the United Nations, the Pan American Health Organization, and the World Bank.

In addition to his many accomplishments in population sciences, Palloni has also played a fundamental role in the training of new generation of demographers, particularly in Latin America, and has provided ample mentorship opportunities to graduate students, junior faculty and his colleagues. For example, during his time as visiting Professor in Brazil and Mexico, Palloni taught summer courses on advanced demographic techniques (e.g., at CEDEPLAR in Brazil and at El Colegio de Mexico in Mexico City). Palloni also played a key role in the creation of the Center for the Demography of Health and Aging at the University of Wiscosin- Madison and was heavily involved in the grant proposal to Forgarty and NIH that provided financial support to many generations of international graduate students. At Wisconsin alone, Palloni trained over 50 PhD students, including current leaders in the field of population science such as Paula Lantz (Dean and Professor, University of Michigan), Barthelemy Kuate Defo (Professor, University of Montreal), Gilsung Park (Dean and Professor, University of Korea), Victor Gaigbe Togbe (Chief, Population & Development Section, Population Division at the United Nations), and Gilbert Brenes (University of Costa Rica), among many others.

Read more on Alberto Palloni's research accomplishments and service to the Union and the discipline in the Nomination Letter.