October 14, 2014
On October 14, Francis Fukuyama, Senior Fellow at the Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law at Stanford University, gave the 2014 Edwin L. Godkin Lecture at Harvard Kennedy School's JFK Jr. Forum. The lecture was titled "The Huntington Legacy in Political Development." Fukuyama discussed his new book, Political Order and Political Decay: From the Industrial Revolution to the Globalization of Democracy, emphasizing the importance of institutions in political development. The event was moderated by Graham Allison, director of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs.
The transcript of Fukuyama's address is available in PDF format.
October 24, 2014
By Julia Martin, Research Program Coordinator, Middle East Initiative
The Belfer Center’s Middle East Initiative and the Center for Public Leadership recently launched the Emirates Leadership Initiative (ELI), a new and exciting collaboration between these two centers at the Harvard Kennedy School. One component of ELI – the Research Fellows Program – allows the Middle East Initiative to host six resident fellows at the pre-doctoral, post-doctoral and/or faculty level for one year. Here are the summaries of each of the 2014-2015 Research Fellows’ current projects.
October 24, 2014
Op-Ed, Boston Globe
By Nicholas Burns, Professor of the Practice of Diplomacy and International Politics, Harvard Kennedy School
Professor Burns argues that the new Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, must define in more concrete terms his country's future economic, political and security relationships with the U.S. Burns believes U.S.-Indian ties are critical for our future. The Obama Administration has been clear what it hopes to achieve. We need such clarity from Modi.
By Laura Diaz Anadon, Assistant Professor of Public Policy; Associate Director, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program; Co-PI, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, Valentina Bosetti, Gabe Chan, Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, Gregory Nemet, Former Visiting Scholar, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program/Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, January–June 2011 and Elena Verdolini
Characterizing the future performance of energy technologies can improve the development of energy policies that have net benefits under a broad set of future conditions. In particular, decisions about public investments in research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) that promote technological change can benefit from (1) an explicit consideration of the uncertainty inherent in the innovation process and (2) a systematic evaluation of the tradeoffs in investment allocations across different technologies. To shed light on these questions, over the past five years several groups in the United States and Europe have conducted expert elicitations and modeled the resulting societal benefits. In this paper, the authors discuss the lessons learned from the design and implementation of these initiatives.
October 21, 2014
Op-Ed, The Diplomat
By Patricia M. Kim, Research Fellow, International Security Program
"Despite widespread dissatisfaction with censorship and official corruption, a lack of a voice in politics, and surprisingly high unemployment rates among university graduates in recent years, students in mainland China today are unlikely to follow in the footsteps of their predecessors and their contemporaries in Hong Kong and Taiwan. This is because since 1989, Beijing's leaders have clamped down on any discussion of democratic reforms and have presented a united front on the supremacy of Party rule."
The Harvard-Tsinghua Workshop on Market Mechanisms to Achieve a Low-Carbon Future for China explored both the opportunities and challenges for market-oriented climate, technology, and water resources policy in China. The workshop convened prominent members of the academic and policy communities from China, the United States, and Europe at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China, on June 3-4, 2014.
October 20, 2014
"How the international safeguards regime can benefit from efforts to enhance the identification method used for UF6 cylinders"
By Olli Heinonen, Senior Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
Improvements to the current methods used by nuclear industry to track and identify uranium hexafluoride (UF6) cylinders would benefit International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards, nuclear inspectorates, and regulatory authorities, as well as facility operators. A move towards a standardized UF6 cylinder identifier is gaining momentum within industry. A National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) team has analyzed how a cylinder identification and monitoring system could be useful to IAEA safeguards and has also engaged industry stakeholders to seek feedback on concepts related to unique cylinder identification and monitoring. While industry initiative is central to developing a system for identifying UF6 cylinders, the IAEA has been monitoring the maturation of identification/tracking technologies in support of possible safeguards use at facilities at the front end of the nuclear fuel cycle.
October 18, 2014
Op-Ed, Agence Global
By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative
"Analysts in the United States this week are debating the precise meaning of the statements Wednesday by John Allen, the ex-Marine general who now coordinates the U.S.-led coalition’s response to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). He said that the United States is not coordinating with the Free Syrian Army, and instead plans to develop from scratch new local ground units in Iraq and Syria to fight ISIS on two fronts."
October 17, 2014
Russia in Review: a digest of useful news from U.S.-Russia Initiative to Prevent Nuclear Terrorism for October 10-17 , 2014
October 16, 2014
Op-Ed, Foreign Policy
By Stephen M. Walt, Robert and Renée Belfer Professor of International Affairs; Faculty Chair, International Security Program
"Instead of pouring good money (and possibly U.S. lives) down that particular rat hole, I'd like to see the people who are most directly affected start fighting this one for themselves. Unless the Turks, Jordanians, Kurds, and other Iraqis are willing to get their acts together to contain these vicious extremists, even a protracted and costly U.S. effort will amount to little."