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Beth Sorensen
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Reed College's 98th Commencement set for May 16

James Paul Kahan ('64), a Senior Research Leader at RAND Europe, is the commencement speaker

PORTLAND, OR (May 3, 2005) - Reed College's 98th commencement will be held at 11 a.m. on Monday, May 16, under the great tent on Reed's south lawn. This year approximately 300 graduates will receive their bachelor's degrees, and five will receive their master of arts in liberal studies degrees. This event is not open to the public.

The commencement speaker will be James Paul Kahan, a Senior Research Leader at RAND Europe, Leiden, the Netherlands. (See biographical notes below)

NOTE: If you would like to send reporters or camera crews, please contact Beth Sorensen at 503/777-7574 or at

James Paul Kahan
James is Senior Research Leader at RAND Europe, Leiden, the Netherlands.   He holds a Ph.D. in mathematical social psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1968) and a B.A. in psychology from Reed College (1964).

At RAND, Kahan has participated led a variety of projects in the areas of health policy, education, transportation safety, governance, drug policy, criminal justice, science and technology policy, strategy analysis, military command-and-control, and Army training. He is internationally known for innovations in many methods having to do with individual and group decision making, including seminar gaming, scenario techniques, Delphi techniques, focus groups, and foresight. He has published over 200 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters.   He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Society and of the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues, and a charter member of the Game Theory Society.   He has served on the editorial boards of major professional journals in social psychology and health policy.

In a prior academic career, Kahan taught at the University of Southern California in the Department of Psychology and at the RAND Graduate School, as well as year-long appointments as Postdoctoral Fellow at the Université d'Aix-en-Provence, France; (twice) Fellow-in-Residence at the Netherlands Institute of Advanced Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences (NIAS); and Visiting Professor at the University of Haifa, Israel and appointments at the Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands, and the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium.

Kahan is also a master teacher and performer of international folk dance and song and an active member of the Anglo American Theatre Group, The Hague.

Reed College
Since its founding in 1908 as an independent undergraduate institution, Reed College has remained steadfast to one central commitment: to provide a balanced, comprehensive education in liberal arts and sciences, fulfilling the highest standards of intellectual excellence. Reed provides one of the nation's most intellectually rigorous undergraduate experiences, with a highly structured academic program balancing broad distribution requirements and in-depth study in a chosen academic discipline.

The distinctive Reed experience includes a challenging curriculum involving wide reading, conference and laboratory-based teaching in small groups, and a student body motivated by enthusiasm for serious intellectual work. Reed offers a B.A. in one of 22 major fields and numerous interdisciplinary fields, as well as an M.A. in liberal studies degree.

With an enrollment today of about 1,340 students, Reed has produced the second highest number of Rhodes Scholars (31) for any liberal arts college, as well as over 50 Fulbright Scholars, over 60 Watson Fellows, and two MacArthur ("Genius") Award winners. Reed ranks third in the nation among institutions of higher learning in the production of PhDs in all disciplines. Reed is first in this percentage in biological sciences, and second in chemistry and humanities. Visit for further information.

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