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Upcoming Events

War or Peace? US Foreign Policy and the Iranian Nuclear Program

Matthew Kroenig, Georgetown University

Thursday, October 2, 2014 | 5 PM 0 7 PM, School of International Service 300

Matthew Kroenig is Associate Professor and International Relations Field Chair in the Department of Government at Georgetown University, and Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security at the Atlantic Council. He is the author of Exporting the Bomb: Technology Transfer and the Spread of Nuclear Weapons (2010), which received the International Studies Association's Best Book Award, Honorable Mention. His most recent volume, A Time to Attack: The Looming Iranian Nuclear Threat (2014), has been called "the most thorough book-length examination of the issues involved in assessing the Iranian challenge."

Professor Kroenig will discuss A Time to Attack and his recent research in a talk moderated by School of International Service professor Neil K. Shenai. This event is sponsored by the Comparative and Regional Studies Program, International Peace and Conflict Resolution Program, and Global Governance, Politics, and Security Program at American University. Copies of A Time to Attack will be available for purchase and signing by the author.

View the event live stream here.

US Africa Policy for the Next Generation of Leaders

Assistant Secretary Linda Thomas-Greenfield, Bureau of African Affairs, Department of State

Tuesday, October 7, 2014 | 12:30 PM - 2:00 PM, Abramson Family Founders Room

At the Africa Summit with 45 heads of state, President Obama announced a bold re-organization of foreign assistance towards Africa. What will it take to be a part of the new generation of the Foreign Service? 

Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield, a member of the Career Foreign Service, was sworn in on August 6, 2013 as the Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of African Affairs. In this capacity, she leads the bureau in the Department of State focused on the development and management of U.S. policy toward sub-Saharan Africa. Her 32-year Foreign Service career includes an ambassadorship to Liberia (2008-20120), and foreign postings in Switzerland (at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations), Pakistan, Kenya, The Gambia, Nigeria, and Jamaica.

Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield was the 2000 recipient of the Warren Christopher Award for Outstanding Achievement in Global Affairs in recognition of her work with refugees. She has received several Superior, Meritorious, and Performance awards, including the Presidential Meritorious Service Award. She was a 2010 inductee into the Louisiana State University Alumni Association Hall of Distinction.

Past Events

4th Annual Ron Walters Memorial & Symposium: Celebrating the Activism & Legacy of Nelson Mandela

Tuesday, November 12, 2013 | 9:30 AM - 1 PM, Abramson Family Founders' Room

When world-renowned scholar and activist Dr. Ronald Walters (1983-2010) passed away, he left a critical legacy of scholarship that examined the relationship between race and politics domestically and internationally. The annual symposium in Dr. Walters' name is meant to examine contemporary issues through the same lens. This year's event is dedicated to the life and work of former South African President Nelson Mandela, whose impact on Africa and the world make him one of the most important activists of the last century.

Comparative and Regional Studies is honored to host a truly remarkable line-up of speakers, including:

  • The Hon. Ebrahim Rasool, Ambassador of South Africa
  • The Hon. John Conyers, Jr., United States House of Representatives
  • Nicole Lee, Esq., President of TransAfrica
  • The Hon. Ron Dellums, former Congressman and Visiting Fellow at the Ronald W. Walters Leadership and Public Policy Center at Howard University
  • Dr. James Mittelman, University Professor at the School of International Service

We hope you will be able to join us for this spectacular event. The schedule of events is available here. Please note that this event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. Please click here to register for the symposium.

The Gap From Parchment to Practice: Ambivalent Effects of Constitutions in Democratizing Countries

May 28-29, 2013

Government Professor Todd Eisenstadt and School of International Service Professor Carl LeVan received a grant from the Mellon Foundation and the Latin American Studies Association to sponsor a conference in May, bringing together experts on some 15 political systems worldwide to present research on the relationship between new constitutions and continued political opening in nations which achieved intermediate levels of democratization before promulgating their new constitutions.  Eisenstadt and LeVan presented their findings,  that constitutions fail to improve levels of political opening more often than not, in their 130-plus cases from the 1970s to the present. Other presenters addressed a range of cases, including Bolivia, Kenya, Malawi, and Venezuela. Faculty from several American universities, including Princeton University and the University of Pennsylvania, as well as from Latin America - as far away as Bolivia - were among the dozen paper presenters at the conference.  

Several American University professors and graduate students presented papers at the conference.  Among them, Government Department doctoral students Tofigh Maboudi and Ghazal Nadi Poshtkouhian discussed their original findings, that after political parties and groups in Egypt agreed to boycott the constitutional assembly, acceptance by framers of citizen-proposed changes to the draft constitution dropped significantly.  The conference was sponsored by the School for International Service and the Department of Government of the School of Public Affairs at American University.  The conference co-coordinators expect an edited book and a couple of journal articles will result from their collaboration.

For more information on the conference, please visit www.american.edu/spa/gov/democratization-conference-2013.cfm

America and Global Capitalism

Leo Panitch and Sam Gindin, The Making of Global Capitalism

October 17, 2012

Authors Leo Panitch and Sam Gindin talked about their new book, The Making of Global Capitalism, and were joined in a panel discussion by Comparative & Regional Studies Professors Dr. Randolph Persaud, Dr. James Mittelman, Dr. Steve Silvia, and Dr. Carl LeVan. The panel addressed the historical significance of the rise of capitalism and the role of the United States in that process, including its status as an "informal empire" in the global political economy.

3rd Annual Ron Walters Memorial & Symposium: "The Global Impact of African American Culture and Politics"

November 13, 2012 

Speakers: Dr. Elsie Scott, Dr. Sujatha Fernandes, Dr. Theresa Runstedtler, Mr. Willard Jenkins, Dr. Clarence Lusane, Ms. Camee Maddox, and Dr. Gisele-Audrey Mills.

Dr. Ronald Walters (1938-2010) left a legacy of scholarship that examined the relationship between race and politics both domestically and internationally. Dr. Walters (SIS/MA, '66, Ph.D. '71) was the former chairman of Howard University's Political Science Department and director of the African American Leadership Institute at the University of Maryland. As an advisor to political leaders from Jesse Jackson to activists in South Africa, Brazil, Australia, and the United Kingdom, he wrote extensively on the politics of the African Diaspora, as captured in his award-winning book, Pan-Africanism in the African Diaspora: An Analysis of Modern Afrocentric Political Movements.

This year's symposium will focus on the influence of African American culture and politics around the world, from music to sports to political campaigns. The event will be organized in two panel discussions, focusing first on Hip-Hop and Jazz Music, then on Sports and the Global Obama Culture. Lunch for attendees is also included in the event.


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