Lecture Series

Lecture Series

The American State in a Multipolar World: Andrew Bacevich

A New Security Paradigm

This event is free and open to the public. Campus visitors and members of the public must adhere to Cornell’s public health requirements for events, which include wearing masks while indoors and providing proof of vaccination or a recent negative COVID-19 test.  The lecture will also be streamed live by eCornell.

Overview

What role should the United States play in an increasingly multipolar international order?  Should it continue to play the role of international policeman or should it cede influence to rising powers and focus on domestic problems? Andrew J. Bacevich, Professor Emeritus of International Relations and History at Boston University, takes up the challenge posed by U.S. foreign policy in the 21st century to propose a new security paradigm, one that prioritizes the security and wellbeing of the American people where they live.

Join the Center for the Study of Economy & Society for the fourth installment of its fall lecture series, “The American State in a Multipolar World,” featuring distinguished world experts, Francis Fukuyama, Jeffrey D. Sachs, Joseph Nye, and Andrew J. Bacevich, as they discuss the future of American foreign policy and the threat of a new Cold War.

What You’ll Learn

  • An alternative view on the future of American hegemony from a leading expert on U.S. foreign policy
  • How the U.S. can achieve security without sacrificing its moral center
  • Key challenges to global peace and cooperation and how to navigate them

About the Speaker

Andrew J. Bacevich is Professor Emeritus of International Relations and History at Boston University. A graduate of the U.S. Military Academy and a retired U.S. army colonel, he received his PhD in American Diplomatic History from Princeton University. Before joining the faculty of Boston University, he was a professor at West Point and Johns Hopkins. Bacevich was a 2004 Berlin Prize Fellow at the American Academy in Berlin and has held fellowships at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins, the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, and the Council on Foreign Affairs in Washington, D.C. He is the author of numerous books on U.S. foreign policy, including most recently, After the Apocalypse: America’s Role in a World Transformed (2021), The Age of Illusions: How America Squandered Its Cold War Victory (2020), and America’s War for the Greater Middle East: A Military History (2016).

Lecture Series

The American State in a Multipolar World: Jeffrey Sachs

A New Foreign Policy: Beyond American Exceptionalism

This online event is free and open to all.  Register here to gain access.

Overview

What does the end of “The American Century” mean for U.S. foreign policy and global cooperation? How can the goals of sustainable development help move us towards a more equitable society? Jeffrey D. Sachs, a world-renowned expert on economic development, considers the failures of American exceptionalism and lays out a vision of how technological dynamism and global cooperation can secure a better future for the United States and for the world.

Join the Center for the Study of Economy & Society for the third installment of its fall lecture series, “The American State in a Multipolar World,” featuring distinguished world experts, Francis Fukuyama, Jeffrey D. Sachs, Joseph Nye, and Andrew J. Bacevich, as they discuss the future of American foreign policy and the threat of a new Cold War.

What You’ll Learn

  • How the goals of sustainable development promote a more equitable society
  • The role of American exceptionalism in threatening international peace
  • How a U.S.-China Cold War would threaten global cooperation on climate action

About the Speaker

Jeffrey D. Sachs is a University Professor and Director of the Center for Sustainable Development at Columbia University, where he directed the Earth Institute from 2002 until 2016. He is also President of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network and a commissioner of the UN Broadband Commission for Development. He has been advisor to three United Nations Secretaries-General, and currently serves as an SDG Advocate under Secretary General António Guterres. He spent over twenty years as a professor at Harvard University, where he received his B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. degrees. He has authored numerous bestseller books. His most recent book is The Ages of Globalization: Geography, Technology, and Institutions (2020). Sachs was twice named as one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential world leaders and was ranked by The Economist among the top three most influential living economists.

Lecture Series

The American State in a Multipolar World: Joseph Nye

The Future of U.S.-China Relations

This online event is free and open to all.  Register here to gain access.

Overview

Will the rise of China lead to conflict with the United States? Or is cooperation still possible in the current political order? Joseph S. Nye, Jr., University Distinguished Service Professor, Emeritus and former Dean of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, offers a fresh perspective on the future of U.S.-China relations, suggesting that cooperative rivalry offers a path to preventing conflict and solving crises.

Join the Center for the Study of Economy & Society for the second installment of its fall lecture series, “The American State in a Multipolar World,” featuring distinguished world experts, Francis Fukuyama, Jeffrey D. Sachs, Joseph Nye, and Andrew J. Bacevich, as they discuss the future of American foreign policy and the threat of a new Cold War.

What You’ll Learn

  • Whether geopolitical rivalry prevents cooperation
  • How empowering others helps nations achieve their own goals
  • The key challenges facing the international community in the 21st century

About the Speaker

Joseph S. Nye, Jr. Is University Distinguished Service Professor, Emeritus and former Dean of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.  He earned his bachelor’s degree from Princeton University, attended Oxford University on a Rhodes Scholarship, and earned a Ph.D. in Political Science from Harvard University. He has previously served as the U.S. Assistant Secretary of Defense for Security Affairs, Chair of the National Intelligence Council, and Deputy Under Secretary of State for Security Assistance, Science and Technology.  He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the British Academy, and the American Academy of Diplomacy.  He has written extensively on U.S. diplomacy and foreign policy and was named as one of the top 100 Global Thinkers in 2011 by Foreign Policy.  His most recent books are Do Morals Matter? (2019), Is the American Century Over? (2015), and Presidential Leadership and the Creation of the American Era (2013).

Lecture Series

The American State in a Multipolar World: Francis Fukuyama

Covid, Climate and the Coming Challenges to Global Democracy

This event is free and open to the public. Campus visitors and members of the public must adhere to Cornell’s public health requirements for events, which include wearing masks while indoors and providing proof of vaccination or a recent negative COVID-19 test.  The lecture will also be streamed live by eCornell: register here to gain access to the online broadcast.

Overview

What do two ongoing crises, the COVID-19 pandemic and the global climate emergency, mean for the future of global democracy and cooperation? Will liberal democracies rise to the challenge? Or will a resurgence of fascism prevent collective action? Francis Fukuyama, Olivier Nomellini Senior Fellow at Stanford University, examines the key issues faced by the contemporary international order and delivers a prognosis based on the coming challenges to global democracy.

Join the Center for the Study of Economy & Society for the inaugural lecture by Francis Fukuyama of a new series, “The American State in a Multipolar World.” The series features distinguished scholars and public intellectuals: Francis Fukuyama, Jeffrey D. Sachs, Joseph Nye Jr., and Andrew J. Bacevich as they discuss the issues and choices facing the American state in a multipolar global economy and shifting world system. Does maintaining American democracy rely on American hegemony? Is a new Cold War compatible with the priorities of climate change and the COVID pandemic, which require inter-state cooperation?

What You’ll Learn

  • The challenges faced by liberal democracies in the years ahead
  • What lessons we should draw from the COVID-19 pandemic in addressing climate change
  • How we should respond to emerging threats to global peace and cooperation

About the Speaker

Francis Fukuyama is Olivier Nomellini Senior Fellow at Stanford University’s Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, Mosbacher Director of FSI’s Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law, and Director of Stanford’s Ford Dorsey Master’s in International Policy. He received his B.A. from Cornell University in classics and his Ph.D. in Political Science from Harvard University. He has written extensively on issues in development and international politics. His influential book, The End of History and the Last Man (1992), has appeared in over twenty foreign editions. Before joining Stanford, he has served as a member of the Political Science Department of the RAND Corporation, on the Policy Planning Staff of the U.S. State Department, as a member of the President’s Council on Bioethics between 2001-2004, and has taught at George Mason University and Johns Hopkins. His most recent book is Identity: The Demand for Dignity and the Politics of Resentment (2018).

Lecture Series

Delia Baldassarri, NYU

Between in-group selection and economic interdependence: Field experiments on prosocial behavior in a multiethnic society
Baldassarri poster

How does prosocial behavior extend beyond in-group boundaries in multiethnic societies? Recent waves of immigration in Western societies have led scholars to conclude that ethnic heterogeneity undermines trust, social capital, and collective goods provision. However, the type of prosociality that helps heterogeneous societies function is different from the in-group solidarity that glues homogeneous communities together. The interdependence and division of labor of life in contemporary urban settings often forces people outside the comfort zones of their familiar networks to constructively interact with unknown, diverse others. Using a large-scale lab-in-the-field experiment with representative sample of Italian natives and immigrants from the metropolitan city of Milan, we study behavior toward coethnics and non-coethnics in strategic and non-strategic interactions. We find that when given the opportunity to select their interaction partners, Italians favor coethnics over immigrants. However, when forced to interact with non-coethnics, as it happens in many economic transactions, Italians generally treat them similarly to how they treat coethnics. They also value signs of social and market integration. Taken together, these results contribute to make sense of the persistence of discriminatory behavior toward minorities in selection processes, as well as confirm contact theory intuition that interaction with outgroup members, especially when individuals have common goals and equal status in the interaction, is likely to foster prosociality.

Lecture Series

Paul DiMaggio, NYU

When Content is King: Using Topic Models to Analyze Online Innovation Crowdsourcing at IBM
DiMaggio poster

Over the past twenty years, a major development in firms’ innovation strategies has been the emergence of crowdsourcing as a tool to stimulate new ideas. A growing literature has examined the process by which ideas are winnowed from such discussions for further develop¬ment. This talk focuses upon a surprisingly neglected factor: the substantive content of em¬ploy¬ee interventions. We demonstrate the utility of topic modeling as an approach to extracting thematic information about discussion content and serving as a basis for identifying significant collective concerns and the degree of consensus around them, the alignment of posts with both elite and consensus emphases, and evidence for deliberative learning during discussion threads. We use this approach to analyze an influential example of such discussions and demonstrate that posts selected to exemplify promising ideas for innovation emphasized particular themes, were aligned with cues from organizational elites as well as reflecting broader topical emphases, and were both generative of and influenced by relatively long ex¬changes. Finally, we consider feat¬ures of the discussion design and selection process that may have accounted for the results we report.

Lecture Series

Andy Summers, London School of Economics

A sociological analysis of the UK’s global elite: evidence from tax records
Summers poster

The UK has proved an attractive destination for the world’s top earners and high net wealth individuals. In 2017, around one quarter of the top 1% by income originally came from abroad, rising to one third amongst the top 0.1% and to nearly four in ten of those within the top 0.01%. Although many of these migrants settle permanently, the UK offers a special tax regime to those who maintain foreign connections, who are known as ‘non-doms’ (i.e. individuals not domiciled in the UK). In the popular imagination, non-doms epitomise a globalised economic elite, simultaneously exerting significant influence within British society, yet remaining weakly tied to the place where they live. We use administrative tax data covering every individual who claimed ‘non-dom’ status from 1997-2017 to provide the first sociological anatomy of this enigmatic group. We will present our initial findings on their national origins and the neighbourhoods within which they live, allowing us to explore the non-dom population on scales from the global down to local. We will also outline an agenda for further work on the sociology of elites in the UK.

Lecture Series

Lucas Drouhot, Max Planck Institute

Cracks in the Melting Pot? Religiosity and Assimilation among the Diverse Muslim Population in France
Drouhot poster

The maintenance of high religiosity levels among Muslim youths in Western Europe constitutes a puzzle in need of an explanation. Focusing on France and using a new empirical strategy for the quantitative study of cultural differences between heterogeneous populations, this study first demonstrates that French Muslims form a diverse group yet one with a consistent and sizable “religiosity differential” resisting intergenerational assimilation to native levels. It then formulates and tests five hypotheses to explain the second generation’s delayed religious assimilation. Material insecurity, the perception and self-report of discrimination, parental religious socialization, transnational ties with the origin country, and neighborhood ethnic segregation are all influential but with an uneven impact across subgroups within native and Muslim populations. Together, results suggest that the religiosity differential stems from a mixture of cultural transmission from the context of origin and blocked acculturation due to stratification and social closure in the context of destination.

Lecture Series

Walter Powell, Stanford

Seeing Like a Philanthropist: From the Business of Benevolence to the Benevolence of Business
Powell poster

Over the course of American history, philanthropists have been both praised and pilloried, depicted as redeemers of democracy and a threat to it. Despite the shifting social terrain in which they have operated, philanthropists — and the organizations they create — have grown in number and influence, acting as a catalytic force in the genesis and development of the modern nonprofit sector. Philanthropic largesse has also played a powerful role in shaping civic life and political affairs. We argue that it is important to understand not only how philanthropists are seen, but also how they see. In narrating the development of American philanthropy from the late 19th to the early 21st centuries, our aim is to capture changes in what it means to “see like a philanthropist”—that is, to illuminate the meanings and ends of philanthropic wealth. We focus on three core influences on philanthropic visions: (1) the sources of philanthropic wealth, (2) its organizational embodiments, and (3) the criticisms leveled at its outsized influence. We examine the reciprocal dynamic between political challenges to elite power and philanthropic visions. We show that philanthropists have transposed the practices they used to earn their great fortunes into the organizational routines of their philanthropies and turned these into requirements for those who receive their funding. The actions of past philanthropists weigh heavily on future philanthropists, Consequently, the political might of philanthropy both channels and enables the critiques to which its influence is subjected. In narrating this long arc of history, we show how the super-rich’s perceptions of themselves and their role in public life have evolved as well as the myriad ways philanthropy has altered civic and political discourse.

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“A hardhitting economic sociology would attempt to draw on the best of sociology and economics, and to unite interests and social relations in one and the same analysis.”— Richard Swedberg