Staniland helped shape programs in GSPIA

Martin Staniland, Graduate School of Public and International Affairs emeritus professor, died Nov. 26, 2020.

“Dr. Staniland played a central role in building our school and shaping our international affairs and development programs,” said GSPIA Dean Carissa Slotterback. “He was a mentor to many and will be truly missed.”

Staniland received his bachelor’s degree in history from Cambridge University, his master’s degree in African studies from the University of Ghana, and his Ph.D. in social and political sciences from Cambridge. He began his academic career teaching at the University of Glasgow and was then a post-doctoral fellow at UCLA and a research fellow at the University of California-Berkeley and Harvard.

Staniland joined GSPIA in 1984 as an associate professor, was promoted to full professor and served the school as interim dean (1995-1996), interim associate dean (2012) and director of the International Affairs program. He published five books and an edited volume concerning his main research interests of commercial aviation, international political economy and development theory and received the Joseph Pois Award for Distinguished Service from GSPIA twice. He retired in 2018.

“Martin Staniland was an accomplished scholar and a teacher who cared deeply about his students,” recalled GSPIA faculty colleague Kevin Kearns. “Above all, he was a fine human being who reveled in the embrace of his loving family and who showed care and empathy to all. His colleagues and friends will fondly remember Martin’s dry British wit and his delightful storytelling.

“I had the privilege of serving with Martin as his associate dean and working closely with him on many GSPIA initiatives. But I will most fondly remember his thoughtful and loving friendship.”

Added former GSPIA dean and professor emerita Carolyn Ban: “Martin’s scholarship was impressive. His work on air transport policy and regulation of the airline industry and the policy conference he organized brought some of the key European experts and policymakers to Pitt. It was a first-class example of policy research that was grounded in both theory and extensive empirical research and that had an impact on the field.”

He is survived by his wife Alberta Sbragia, a long-time Pitt faculty member; sister Kay Staniland; half-sister Brenda Delamain; daughter Laura Trybus and son-in-law Matthew Trybus; son Paul Staniland; and daughter-in-law Rebecca Incledon, as well as two grandchildren, Ethan and Leo Staniland.

Memorial gifts are suggested to Doctors Without Borders or the GSPIA Internship Resource Fund.

— Marty Levine