Thorson is Donald P. and Margaret Curry Gregg Professor Emeritus in the Maxwell School at Syracuse University. As a fellow at Syracuse University’s Systems Assurance Institute, Thorson created, designed, and oversaw the implementation of the Maxwell School’s Global Collaboratory, a facility that uses advanced communications and computing technologies to support global research collaborations and distributed learning. Thorson directed the SU integrated information technology research collaboration with Kim Chaek University of Technology (DPRK) and is co-director of the Regional Scholars and Leaders Seminar initiative. His research has been funded by organizations such as the United States Information Agency, IBM, the Ford Foundation, and the United States Institute for Peace, the National Science Foundation, and the Macarthur Foundation. Thorson earned his Ph.D. in political science at the University of Minnesota.