Vera Dean

A scholar of international relations, Vera Dean helped shape American foreign policy through her writing. Dean fled the Russian Revolution with her family, settling in America, where she pursued a business degree before earning an MA from Yale in 1926 and a doctorate from Radcliffe in 1928 in international law and relations. That year, she began working with the Foreign Policy Association, pioneering popular education in international relations. She directed research on foreign policy and edited the Foreign Policy Bulletin, among others. The State Department invited her to advise the American delegation at the founding of the United Nations in 1945. Her 1953 Foreign Policy Without Fear and 1961 Builders of Emerging Nations became essential reading in the field. Her belief in the importance of popular understanding of international relations brought her to teaching at Barnard College in 1946, then briefly at Harvard in 1947 and Smith in 1952. She directed the non-western civilization program at the University of Rochester from 1954–1961 before joining the faculty of NYU’s Graduate School of Public Administration in 1962, teaching seminars on international administration and on political science in developing countries until her retirement in 1971.


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Date of Birth

St. Petersburg

Date of Death

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Vera Dean." (Viewed on June 18, 2021) <>.


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