West Philly Prof Receives MacArthur ‘Genius’ Grant

A West Philadelphia professor was one of 22 Americans who received a MacArthur Foundation “genius” grant yesterday.

Jacob Soll, 42, who lives in University City with his wife and two daughters and teaches political history at Rutgers University-Camden, was the only recipient in the Delaware Valley this year.

Soll is currently researching the role of accounting in the rise and fall of states from Renaissance Italy to modern Wall Street and the importance of libraries in state-building.

He has an gained an international reputation for his cross-disciplinary work on the history of information culture and has published several critically-acclaimed books.

The MacArthur Fellowship presents the five-year, $500,000 grant to people who show creativity, significant achievement and future potential in their work.

Recipients are anonymously nominated by leaders in their fields and, in the past, have included scientists, historians, poets, artists and public servants.

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