This landmark study in the field of comparative politics is being celebrated for its return to print as the newest addition to the "Longman Classics in Political Sciencer" series. Politics in Plural Societies presents a model of political competition in multi-ethnic societies and explains why plural societies, and the struggle for power within them, often erupt with inter-ethnic hostility. Distinguished scholars Alvin Rabushka and Kenneth Shepsle collaborate again in this reissuing of their classic work to demonstrate in a new epilogue the persistence of the arguments and evidence first offered in the book. They apply this thesis to the multi-ethnic politics of countries that are of great interest today: Iraq, Lebanon, Sudan, Yugoslavia, and more.
Domestic economic institutions change through processes of conflict
and bargaining+ Why do the strongest groups in such conflicts ever change their minds
about the acceptability of institutional arrangements they once opposed? Drawing
on the cases of Ireland in 1986–87 and Italy in 1989–93, this article demonstrates
how the process of common knowledge creation between employers and unions
changed the course of negotiations over national wage bargaining institutions+ Common
knowledge creation happens when existing institutions are in crisis+ The institutional
experimentation that follows such crises, characterized by deep uncertainty,
places a premium on persuasive argument+ The ideas most likely to serve as the basis
for newly common knowledge will have analytical and distributive appeal to both
unions and employers, and they must be ratified in public agreements, which I call
common knowledge events. Common knowledge events establish new social facts,
which can change the payoffs associated with different institutional outcomes. This
can lead even powerful actors to accept institutions they had previously opposed.
Popular reactions to the transition from centrally planned socialism to a market-based economy are explored through an examination of survey data on distributive justice and injustice attitudes in Beijing, China, in 2000, and in Warsaw, Poland, in 2001. In both capitals objective socioeconomic status characteristics of respondents have weaker and less consistent associations with distributive injustice attitudes than measures of subjective social status and self-reported trends in family standards of living. When objective and subjective respondent background characteristics are controlled for statistically, residents of democratic and enthusiastically capitalist Warsaw have stronger feelings of distributive injustice than respondents in undemocratic and only partially reformed Beijing. However, one exception to this pattern is that Beijing residents favor government redistribution to reduce income differences more than their Warsaw counterparts. Conjectures about the sources of these differences in distributive injustice attitudes are offered.
The essays in this volume reflect on the nature of subjectivity in the diverse places where anthropologists work at the beginning of the twenty-first century. Contributors explore everyday modes of social and psychological experience, the constitution of the subject, and forms of subjection that shape the lives of Basque youth, Indonesian artists, members of nongovernmental HIV/AIDS programs in China and the Republic of Congo, psychiatrists and the mentally ill in Morocco and Ireland, and persons who have suffered trauma or been displaced by violence in the Middle East and in South and Southeast Asia.
Female leadership remains strikingly low in most democracies, and voter preferences are
often suggested as a likely explanation. In this paper, we present experimental evidence
from India which suggests that, on average, villagers, especially men, are prejudiced
against female leaders. For example, men rate a hypothetical leadership speech more
negatively when the speaker's voice is experimentally manipulated to be female, rather
than male. However, randomly assigned exposure to a female leader (due to mandated
political representation for women) reduces such prejudice by 50-100% depending on
the measure. We also provide suggestive evidence that prejudice influences perceptions
of actual performance. Despite outperforming their male counterparts on many dimensions of performance, first time women leaders receive worse evaluations. Consistent
with our experimental evidence that exposure reduces prejudice, second time female
leaders are rated at par with male leaders.
Between 1850 and 1930, demographic upheaval in the United States was connected to reorganization of the racial order. Socially and politically recognized boundaries between groups shifted, new groups emerged, others disappeared, and notions of who belonged in which category changed. All recognized racial groups—blacks, whites, Indians, Asians, Mexicans and others—were affected. This article investigates how and why census racial classification policies changed during this period, only to stabilize abruptly before World War II. In the context of demographic transformations and their political consequences, we find that census policy in any given year was driven by a combination of scientific, political, and ideological motivations.Based on this analysis, we rethink existing theoretical approaches to censuses and racial classification, arguing that a nation's census is deeply implicated in and helps to construct its social and political order. Censuses provide the concepts, taxonomy, and substantive information by which a nation understands its component parts as well as the contours of the whole; censuses both create the image and provide the mirror of that image for a nation's self-reflection. We conclude by outlining the meaning of this period in American history for current and
future debates over race and classification.
This paper was originally: Hochschild, Jennifer L., and Brenna M. Powell. "Racial Reorganization
and the United States Census 1850-1930: Mulattoes, Half-Breeds, Mixed
Parentage, Hindoos, and the Mexican." Working Paper 2007-28,
Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, Harvard University, 2007.Download PDF
Presdent Pervez Musharraf's stunning defeat in Monday's elections in Pakistan represents a decisive rejection of what his opponents called his policies of "subservience" to the United States. An American press that has been virtually unanimous in opposing Musharraf will now predictably call for his resignation in favor of "genuine democracy." Since this outcome is a possibility, it is essential to ask where a government that accurately reflects the views of Pakistani citizens would stand on issues that matter most to America.Would such a government follow Musharraf's lead as a grudging shot-gun ally? Recall that after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, as Musharraf tells the story, the United States gave him the choice of becoming an ally or being "bombed back to the Stone Age."How vigorously would a new democratic government support the US-led war on terrorism in which Pakistan's army is now fighting Al Qaeda and its affiliates headquartered in Pakistan's ungoverned Northwest Territories? Would such a government be more likely to cooperate with the United States and NATO in the ongoing but faltering war against the Taliban in Afghanistan? Recall again that the rise of the Taliban took place during the term of Musharraf's civilian predecessors, including Nawaz Sharif, the leader of one of the parties that won in Monday's election.The answer to each of these questions is as unambiguous as it is uncomfortable. A Pakistani government whose actions align with its citizens' views on these issues would be at loggerheads with the United States. Over the past year, polls have highlighted the sharp decline in Musharraf's popularity, with his approval ratings dropping to 15 percent in December. Several recent polls, including ones from the Pew Global Attitudes Project, the International Republican Institute, and Terror Free Tomorrow echo those sentiments, with one showing that 70 percent of Pakistanis "want Musharraf to immediately resign."But what most American commentators have missed is that however much Pakistanis dislike Musharraf, they are more hostile toward the United States. When asked to name the "single greatest threat" to their country, 64 percent of Pakistanis named the United States. Historic archrival India, with whom Pakistan has fought five bloody wars, was second, well behind America.Eighty-nine percent of Pakistanis said they disapprove of the US war on terrorism. Eight in 10 Pakistanis oppose allowing the United States to pursue Al Qaeda terrorists in their country. A similar percentage rejects US pursuit of Taliban forces into Pakistan. In opposing Musharraf, opposition parties called him "Busharraf" and accused him of being a "lackey" of the United States in the "so-called war on terrorism," which they say is a US-led war on Islam.The US military presence in Afghanistan, where earlier Pakistani governments were the primary sponsors of the Taliban, is opposed by 83 percent of Pakistanis. Critics of Musharraf's limited cooperation with the US-NATO campaign should recognize that a government that more closely followed the wishes of its people would be less cooperative in combating the Taliban.The United States has two vital national interests in Pakistan: first, to prevent any of Pakistan's nuclear arsenal and bomb-making materials from being stolen, sold or transferred to terrorists; second, to destroy Al Qaeda's leadership, sanctuary, and training camps. Neither interest will be advanced by a transition from the devil we know to the new democratic Pakistani government.Fortunately, Pakistan's nuclear weapons are secured by its army, the country's most effective national institution. Unless the army were destabilized or became substantially disaffected because of extended political instability, it will fulfill its custodial responsibilities. In contrast, a government that truly reflects the current views of the Pakistani people is more likely to be an unspoken opponent than an ambiguous ally in the US war against Al Qaeda and other terrorists in the region.Hard as it is to believe, Osama bin Laden is four times as popular among Pakistanis as President Bush, whose approval rating is 7.7 percent.That leading US opinion pages generally critical of Bush's democracy crusade in Iraq should now so uncritically promote democratic shock-therapy as a panacea for Pakistan's problems is puzzling. The inconvenient, painful truth is that a truly democratic Pakistan would be, at least in the foreseeable future, less inclined to act in ways that advance urgent American interests.Advocates of instant democracy should be careful what they wish for.Graham Allison Faculty Associate; Douglas Dillon Professor of Government and Director, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University
What did people make of death in the world of Atlantic slavery? In The Reaper's Garden,
Vincent Brown asks this question about Jamaica, the staggeringly
profitable hub of the British Empire in America—and a human
catastrophe. Popularly known as the grave of the Europeans, it was just
as deadly for Africans and their descendants. Yet among the survivors,
the dead remained both a vital presence and a social force.
In this compelling and evocative story of a world in flux,
Brown shows that death was as generative as it was destructive. From
the eighteenth-century zenith of British colonial slavery to its demise
in the 1830s, the Grim Reaper cultivated essential aspects of social
life in Jamaica—belonging and status, dreams for the future, and
commemorations of the past. Surveying a haunted landscape, Brown
unfolds the letters of anxious colonists; listens in on wakes,
eulogies, and solemn incantations; peers into crypts and coffins, and
finds the very spirit of human struggle in slavery. Masters and
enslaved, fortune seekers and spiritual healers, rebels and rulers, all
summoned the dead to further their desires and ambitions. In this
turbulent transatlantic world, Brown argues, “mortuary politics” played
a consequential role in determining the course of history.
Insightful and powerfully affecting, The Reaper's Garden promises to enrich our understanding of the ways that death shaped political life in the world of Atlantic slavery and beyond.
2009 Co-winner of the Merle Curti Award, Organization of American Historians
2009 James A. Rawley Prize, Organization of American Historians
2008-2009 Louis Gottschalk Prize, sponsored by the
Executive Board of the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies
and the Louis Gottschalk Committee
In the mushrooming procedural debate about Democratic superdelegates and the uncontested Florida and Michigan primaries, more is at stake than the identity of the presidential nominee or even the Democrats' chances of victory in November. Primaries and caucuses coast to coast in the last two months have evinced the sharpest increase in civic engagement among American youth in at least a half-century, portending a remarkable revitalization of American democracy. But that rebirth of American civic life would be aborted if the decision rendered by millions of ordinary Americans could be overturned by a backroom deal among political insiders. The issue is not public jurisprudence or obscure party regulations or the alleged "wisdom" of party elders, but simple playground notions of fairness.Throughout the last four decades of the 20th century, young people's engagement in American civic life declined year after year with depressing regularity. In fall 1966, well before the full flowering of Vietnam War protests, a UCLA poll of college freshmen nationwide found that "keeping up with politics" was a "very important" goal in their lives for fully 60 percent.Thirty-four years later that figure had plummeted to 28 percent. In 1972, when the vote was first extended to 18-year-olds, turnout in the presidential election among 18- to 24-year-olds was a disappointing 52 percent. But even beginning at that modest level, rates of voting in presidential elections by young people steadily fell throughout the '70s, '80s, and '90s, reaching barely 36 percent in 2000. National commissions bemoaned the seemingly inexorable increase in youthful apathy and incivism. The National Commission on Civic Renewal said, "When we assess our country's civic and moral condition, we are deeply troubled... We are in danger of becoming a nation of spectators."Then came the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, a national tragedy, but also a vivid reminder that we are all in this together. Civic seismometers across the land showed a sharp spike in virtually every measure of community-mindedness. It was, I wrote at the time, not only a tragedy, but also the sort of opportunity for civic revival that comes along once or twice a century. Just as Pearl Harbor had spawned the civic-minded "Greatest Generation," so too Sept. 11 might turn out to produce a more civically engaged generation of young people.For most Americans the half-life of the civic boomlet after the attacks was barely six months. Within a year measures of civic engagement had returned to the previous levels, from which they have barely budged since. Except among young people.Among the cohort of Americans caught by 9/11 in their formative years, the effects of the attacks on their civic consciousness were more enduring. The annual UCLA chart of interest in politics jumped upward in 2001 for the first time in decades and has kept rising every year since.Last month the UCLA researchers reported that "For today's freshmen, discussing politics is more prevalent now than at any point in the past 41 years." This and other evidence led us and other observers to speak hopefully of a 9/11 generation, perhaps even a "new Greatest Generation." In the 2004 and 2006 elections, turnout among young people began at last to climb after decades of decline, reaching the highest point in 20 years in 2006. As we approached the presidential season of 2008, young Americans were, in effect, coiled for civic action, not because of their stage of life, but because of the lingering effects of the unifying national crisis they had experienced in their formative years.The exceptionally lively presidential nominating contests of this year—and, it must be said, the extraordinary candidacy of Barack Obama—have sparked into white hot flame a pile of youthful kindling that had been stacked and ready to flare for more than six years. The 18-year-olds first eligible to vote in 2008 were in sixth grade when the twin towers fell, and their older sisters and brothers who were college seniors in September 2001 are now 28 or 29. It is precisely this group, above all others in America, that has pushed participation rates in this spring's caucuses and primaries to record levels. Turnout in this spring's electoral contests so far has generally been higher than in previous presidential nominating contests, but for twenty-somethings the rise has been truly phenomenal—turnout often three or four times greater than ever before measured.The 2008 elections are thus the coming-out party of this new Greatest Generation. Their grandparents of the original Greatest Generation were the civic pillars of American democracy for more than a half-century, and at long last, just as that generation is leaving the scene, reinforcements are arriving. Americans of every political persuasion should rejoice at this epochal swing of the generational pendulum, for it portends precisely the sort of civic renaissance for which Jeremiahs have been calling for many years.This, then, is what is at stake in the otherwise inside-baseball controversies about superdelegates and pledged delegates and the uncontested Florida and Michigan primaries—controversies now roiling Democratic party leaders. If the results of the caucuses and primaries are, despite record-breaking rates of popular participation, overturned by unelected (though officially legitimate) superdelegates or by delegates from states that all candidates had previously agreed not to contest, the lesson for the young civic stalwarts would be unmistakable—democratic politics is a sham. Politics is actually controlled by party bosses behind the scenes. Civic engagement is for suckers.From Little League to student council races, we all learn to accept defeats we have lost fair and square. But losing in a contest in which the rules can be rigged teaches that the game is not worth the candle. Who can honestly doubt that if the Democratic presidential candidate preferred by a majority of the delegates elected in this spring's competitive contests (and by the overwhelming majority of young voters) were to be rejected solely by the power of unelected delegates (or those "elected" without any serious competition), the unmistakable civics lesson would be catastrophic for this incipient cadre of super citizens?So as the superdelegates, the two campaigns, and Democratic Party leaders contemplate how to resolve the procedural issues before them - what to do about Michigan and Florida, and how superdelegates should vote—let's hope that they weigh the consequences not merely for their own candidates this year, and not merely for the Democratic prospects in the fall, but for the future vitality of American democracy.Robert D. Putnam, a professor of public policy at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government, is author of Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community and Better Together: Restoring the American Community.
Until recently, the term "reconciliation" was used primarily (although with some notable exceptions) in religious discourse. It was not often subjected to systematic analysis by political scientists or social psychologists. The dramatic political change in South Africa in 1994, soon followed by the establishment of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, as well as a number of related efforts in other, postconflict zones, can probably serve as a marker for the shift in attention to the concept of reconciliation among social scientists.
This paper demonstrates the utility of a sociology of regional integration by addressing two central questions that have sparked much debate over the welfare state. Is there evidence of long-anticipated retrenchment? Does globalization cause that retrenchment? I redirect these debates by showing that there is evidence of retrenchment in Europe, and that regional integration—not globalization – accounts for it. Regional integration is conceptualized as the construction of supranational political economy in negotiated and bounded regions through political institutionalization and market expansion. I develop the argument that regional political integration should constrain the welfare state through policy feedbacks, the politics of blame avoidance, and the diffusion of classical-liberal policy scripts, while regional economic integration should constrain the welfare state by expanding labor markets and undermining labor
unions. I assess these arguments with time-series cross-section models and data from 13 European Union (EU) and non-EU states. The results show that (1) there is evidence of
retrenchment, (2) regionalization is significantly associated with retrenchment, and (3) the effect of regional integration is dampened in the strongest welfare states. I draw the general conclusion that regional integration is a new and consequential part of the social context that should receive
more attention from sociologists.
The larger project from which this paper was drawn was awarded the American Sociological Association Dissertation Award in 2006.Download PDF
Research on the determinants of inequality has implicated globalization in the increased income inequality observed in many advanced capitalist countries since the 1970s. Meanwhile, a different form of international embeddedness—regional integration—has largely escaped attention. Regional integration, conceptualized as the construction of international economy and polity within negotiated regions, should matter for inequality. This paper offers theoretical arguments that distinguish globalization from regional integration, connects regional integration to inequality through multiple theoretical mechanisms, develops hypotheses on the relationship between regional integration and inequality, and reports fresh empirical evidence on the net effect of regional integration on inequality in Western Europe. Three classes of models are used in the analysis: (1) time-series models where region-year is the unit of analysis, (2) panel models where country-year is the unit of analysis, and (3) analysis of variance to identify how the between- and within-country components of income inequality have changed over time. The evidence suggests that regional integration remaps inequality in Europe. Regionalization is associated with both a decrease in between-country inequality, and an increase in within-country inequality. The analysis of variance shows that the net effect is negative, and that within-country inequality now comprises a larger proportion of total income inequality.
This paper is prepared for the conference on "Inequality Beyond Globalization: Economic Changes and the Dynamics of Inequality," sponsored by the World Society Foundation and the Research Committee on Economy and Society of the International Sociological Association (RC-02), and convened in Neuchatel, Switzerland, June 2008. Please direct comments to Jason Beckfield.Download PDF
Will the food crisis that is menacing the lives of millions ease up—or grow worse over time? The answer may be both. The recent rise in food prices has largely been caused by temporary problems like drought in Australia, Ukraine and elsewhere. Though the need for huge rescue operations is urgent, the present acute crisis will eventually end. But underlying it is a basic problem that will only intensify unless we recognize it and try to remedy it. It is a tale of two peoples. In one version of the story, a country with a lot of poor people suddenly experiences fast economic expansion, but only half of the people share in the new prosperity. The favored ones spend a lot of their new income on food, and unless supply expands very quickly, prices shoot up. The rest of the poor now face higher food prices but no greater income, and begin to starve. Tragedies like this happen repeatedly in the world.A stark example is the Bengal famine of 1943, during the last days of the British rule in India. The poor who lived in cities experienced rapidly rising incomes, especially in Calcutta, where huge expenditures for the war against Japan caused a boom that quadrupled food prices. The rural poor faced these skyrocketing prices with little increase in income. Misdirected government policy worsened the division. The British rulers were determined to prevent urban discontent during the war, so the government bought food in the villages and sold it, heavily subsidized, in the cities, a move that increased rural food prices even further. Low earners in the villages starved. Two million to three million people died in that famine and its aftermath.Much discussion is rightly devoted to the division between haves and have-nots in the global economy, but the world’s poor are themselves divided between those who are experiencing high growth and those who are not. The rapid economic expansion in countries like China, India and Vietnam tends to sharply increase the demand for food. This is, of course, an excellent thing in itself, and if these countries could manage to reduce their unequal internal sharing of growth, even those left behind there would eat much better. But the same growth also puts pressure on global food markets—sometimes through increased imports, but also through restrictions or bans on exports to moderate the rise in food prices at home, as has happened recently in countries like India, China, Vietnam and Argentina. Those hit particularly hard have been the poor, especially in Africa.There is also a high-tech version of the tale of two peoples. Agricultural crops like corn and soybeans can be used for making ethanol for motor fuel. So the stomachs of the hungry must also compete with fuel tanks. Misdirected government policy plays a part here, too. In 2005, the United States Congress began to require widespread use of ethanol in motor fuels. This law combined with a subsidy for this use has created a flourishing corn market in the United States, but has also diverted agricultural resources from food to fuel. This makes it even harder for the hungry stomachs to compete.Ethanol use does little to prevent global warming and environmental deterioration, and clear-headed policy reforms could be urgently carried out, if American politics would permit it. Ethanol use could be curtailed, rather than being subsidized and enforced. The global food problem is not being caused by a falling trend in world production, or for that matter in food output per person (this is often asserted without much evidence). It is the result of accelerating demand. However, a demand-induced problem also calls for rapid expansion in food production, which can be done through more global cooperation. While population growth accounts for only a modest part of the growing demand for food, it can contribute to global warming, and long-term climate change can threaten agriculture. Happily, population growth is already slowing and there is overwhelming evidence that women’s empowerment (including expansion of schooling for girls) can rapidly reduce it even further.What is most challenging is to find effective policies to deal with the consequences of extremely asymmetric expansion of the global economy. Domestic economic reforms are badly needed in many slow-growth countries, but there is also a big need for more global cooperation and assistance. The first task is to understand the nature of the problem.Amartya Sen, is the Chair, Project on Justice, Welfare, and Economics, a Weatherhead Center Faculty Associate, and Thomas W. Lamont University Professor, Department of Economics, Harvard University.
Amartya Sen received the Nobel Prize in economics in 1998.
Blackmail and attempted murder are not typically studied as part of economic history. However, a credit crisis among 18th century French silk and brandy merchants led to just such dramatic incidents, the accounts of which piqued the interest of Emma Rothschild, a historian of economic life, empires, and Atlantic connections.Rothschild, Jeremy and Jane Knowles Professor of History in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS), has recently come to Cambridge, Mass., from Cambridge, England, where she has worked to facilitate interaction among historians, economists, and scholars from other disciplines, while maintaining rigorous historical methods within her own research.Rothschild is the director of the newly formed Joint Center for History and Economics (JCHE). In Cambridge, England, she co-founded the Centre for History and Economics at King’s College in 1991, which encouraged conversation among scholars from varying disciplines at a time when the world was changing in profound ways. The JCHE will similarly encourage such scholarly inquiry at Harvard.
When she learned of the events surrounding a credit crisis among silk and brandy merchants that occurred in a small French town in 1769, Rothschild was intrigued. The merchants, when threatened with bankruptcy, struck back by accusing their lenders of usury. The incident had hitherto been studied as a footnote in the history of lending, but Rothschild was gripped by the story, which involved not only accounts of lending and interest, but also blackmail and attempted murder. It helped shift Rothschild’s area of interest within the study of the history of economic life.
"[This] was a story of people’s lives that could be described in other terms than, ‘Was the market rate of interest the same as the natural rate of interest?’ or ‘What were the consequences for the French economy?’ It had to do with their sentiments about the economy, and I thought that was very interesting," says Rothschild. "Everyone has economic experiences, and the way that we think about them changes."While she is now living full time in Cambridge, Mass., Rothschild was already quite familiar with the area. She first came to Cambridge in 1967 to study economics with a strong interest in economic history, at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Later, from 1978 to 1988, she taught at MIT. She has been a part-time visiting professor at Harvard since 2004.Her marriage was also trans-Atlantic. She married Amartya Sen, Thomas W. Lamont University Professor, in 1991, and for a number of years the two commuted between the two Cambridges. The couple is now happy to be closer to Sen’s children, who live in the area.
Rothschild’s most recent book is Economic Sentiments: Adam Smith, Condorcet and the Enlightenment (Harvard University Press, 2001). In her forthcoming book, The Inner Life of Empires, she traces the history of an 18th century Scottish family of seven brothers and four sisters called the Johnstones. The book is an expansion of a series of lectures that she gave in Princeton in 2006, as Tanner Lectures on Human Values.The Johnstone siblings were involved with the armed forces, politics, and the law, and they traveled widely—to Africa, North America, India, and the West Indies. Some were in the slave trade, to which others in the family were vehemently opposed. As they engaged in these activities, the family wrote letters, detailing their lives and their feelings about the changing world around them. They were also parties in a variety of legal disputes. Rothschild has been increasingly interested in the lives of the sisters, but as is often the case, information about women in the 18th century has been difficult to discover.
"By centering on a particular family, I am trying to question the distinctions between the economic side of their life, the political side, and the legal side, because for them, they didn’t divide up events, and say, ‘This is an economic problem, and this is a legal problem.’ It becomes easier to think oneself into a world where these distinctions weren’t as clear," says Rothschild.The letters explored the moral implications of some of the family’s actions at a time when Britain was becoming an empire. In their own words, the brothers and their friends also made comparisons to other imperial regimes, including the Roman, Dutch, Mogul, and Portuguese empires.
"The brothers and sisters wrote to each other over the course of half a century, and expressed deep differences of opinion. It intrigued me to think about how they observed the changes that were taking place in their worlds. The title refers as much to their interest in empires as my own," says Rothschild.Rothschild explains that the study of the history of economic life differs from the study of the history of economics. The former looks at the ways individuals have been affected by economic events, such as changes in property rights or debts and credit, while the latter concerns itself with the intellectual history of the discipline. Her own research has involved both areas.The JCHE is one of the first centers of its kind to take on such topics across both scholarly boundaries and geographical divides. Both faculty and graduate students often travel back and forth between the two institutions, and graduate students have been involved with the JCHE on both sides of the ocean.The centers have tackled many large-scale questions through a series of projects addressing economic and social security, environmental history, transnational exchanges of ideas, and the history of globalization. One such project, about which Rothschild is particularly excited, is "The Digitization of History," which explores the role of new technology in increasing access to historical sources and archives, and changing the way that historians are accessing visual, printed, and manuscript sources.Initiatives such as the Google books program have put a vast quantity of material online, she explains. The British National Archives have made available—and searchable—wills dating back to the 14th century, and shipping records of the port of Bordeaux, France, have been digitized and made available at no cost.
The JCHE project also explores the technical challenges involved with digital preservation, and the increasing divide between the access to digital materials for wealthy, English-speaking institutions and those of developing countries."This is changing the ways that we do history and think about doing history, in respects that we don’t understand yet," Rothschild says. "It raises quite new questions, because one could find out details of lives of people in the past that couldn’t have been put together in the same way before."
This is a book about the politics of the global economy—about how firms prosper by understanding those politics, or fail by misunderstanding them. Understanding the politics of globalization may once have been a luxury; it is now, for most high-level managers, simply a necessity. The book contains cases which can be used by instructors and students to build a framework of analysis that enables them to understand the challenges of international trade and investment and master the opportunities they represent. This framework is based on a systematic evaluation of the informal and formal rules that define markets for goods, services, and capital. These insightful cases allow for evaluation of: the political and economic origins of our current era of globalization and how the rules that constrain and enable firms are changing; the impact of governments’ policies and which tools are available for predicting, avoiding, or even employing the long arm of the government; and the influence of informal and formal institutions on opportunities for success in international finance and trade.
The enlargement of NATO to include Georgia and Ukraine could become the most dangerous spoiler in relations between Russia and the west next year. It would also set the new US president off to a bad start. If NATO’s foreign ministers were to decide in December that the two former Soviet republics were ready for the membership action plan and if Russia retaliated by freezing its relations with the alliance, that would create a lose-lose situation for everybody—for NATO, for Russia and, ultimately, also for Kiev and Tbilisi.
An already nationalistic Russia would fall prey to its fear of being encircled again and it would dangerously isolate itself from the west. The alliance, in turn, would revert to its 20th-century raison d’être—containing an increasingly hostile Russia—instead of focusing on more crucial tasks, including its adaptation to the new security challenges. This would further exacerbate the rifts within the European Union over its Russia policy.
But in a different scenario, could Georgia’s and Ukraine’s legitimate aspiration to join the alliance turn a potential spoiler into a win-win situation for both NATO and Russia?
Yes, it could, but only if both sides show political courage. Contrary to today’s received wisdom, Georgia’s and Ukraine’s wish to join the alliance could provide the right conditions for two positive developments: NATO could at last shake off its legacy as a cold war and anti-Russian alliance; and a new mindset could take hold in Russia, involving a vision of security based on co-operation, not on competition or on spheres of influence.
How can this be achieved? A strategy based on three elements could work. First, the US, NATO, Russia, the EU and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe should forge a new compact jointly to manage security threats in their common neighbourhood, which stretches from Ukraine, through the Caucasus to Central Asia (an area whose geostrategic importance has grown as a result of the conflict in Afghanistan). The group of these organizations would share responsibility for combating common threats in the area, ranging from terrorism to Islamic fundamentalism, to drug-trafficking and organized crime. They would also commit themselves to finally resolving the frozen conflicts in Transnistria, Abkhazia and Nagorno-Karabakh.Russia has been resentful of the west since the end of the cold war, claiming that it is unfairly treated as a junior partner and demanding formal recognition as an equal. A new security compact would grant Russia that status: the sharing of power between Russia, the EU, NATO, the US and the OSCE would go hand in hand with shared responsibility for “securing security”. The new compact should complement these institutions, not replace them.
Second, within this new co-operative security framework Russia would shelve its opposition to Georgia and Ukraine accessing the membership access plan. In fact, if NATO becomes part of a larger, co-operative security framework in which Russia is an equal partner, Moscow should have nothing to fear from Georgian or Ukrainian membership. Indeed, Moscow would benefit from the fact that NATO membership would encourage its two neighbors to become more responsible regional players. Russia would thus boost its legitimacy in the eyes of the “new” Europe, which still mistrusts it and sees it as a sovereign democracy bent on denying sovereignty to others.
Finally, in return for Russia shelving its opposition to the membership access plan, both Georgia and Ukraine would commit to negotiating new bilateral pacts of friendship and co-operation with Russia to consolidate trust.Implementing such a strategy depends on both the west and Russia showing the political will to do so. In just over a year we will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the end of the cold war. What better way could there be to dispel the tensions between Russia and the west than to work together in addressing the common challenges of the 21th century? A US-Russia-NATO-EU-OSCE summit and the signing of a new Eurasian security charter could help to consign this hangover from the past to the archives and allow us to start afresh. It is high time that happened. A reformulation of the terms of security co-operation between the west and Russia in their common neighbourhood would also bode well for future co-operation in other hot areas, with Iran and Afghanistan heading the list.
The focus of reforms in the developing world has moved from getting prices right to getting institutions right. This reflects the recognition that markets are unlikely to work well in the absence of a predictable and legitimate set of rules that support economic activity and dispense its fruits. "Governance reforms" have become the buzzword for bilateral donors and multilateral institutions, in much the same way that liberalization, privatization and stabilization were the mantras of the 1980s. But what kind of institutions should reformers strive to build? It is easier to list the functions that good institutions perform than it is to describe the shape they should take. Desirable institutions provide security of property rights, enforce contracts, stimulate entrepreneurship, foster integration in the world economy, maintain macroeconomic stability, manage risk-taking by financial intermediaries, supply social insurance and safety nets, and enhance voice and accountability. But as the variety of institutional forms that prevail in the advanced countries themselves suggests (Richard Freeman 2000, Peter Hall and David Soskice 2001), each one of these ends can be achieved in a large number of different ways (Dani Rodrik 2007).
The undergraduates who gather around the seminar table at 61 Kirkland St. have a lot on their minds. Not just final papers, athletic matches, and music performances, but a range of issues that run far beyond the daily stresses of college: Refugee resettlement. Human trafficking. Child soldiers. These human rights issues—along with many others—are the challenges that have inspired this group of passionate students to add another course to their jam-packed schedules.
This fall marks the inaugural semester of the Human Rights Scholars Seminar, a biweekly, noncredit class for juniors and seniors with a dedicated interest in human rights-related research. The yearlong course provides a forum for the discussion of human rights scholarship, research methods, and practices."The seminar aims to introduce students to a range of methodologies relevant to human rights research, to put them in touch with ongoing human rights research by faculty and leading experts in the field, and to give them an opportunity to discuss this material in a small, interdisciplinary group context,” said Jacqueline Bhabha, director of the Harvard University Committee on Human Rights Studies (UCHRS).
Conceived and developed by UCHRS committee members, the course is one of many Harvard initiatives to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The seminar is led by Cosette Creamer, a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Government and a J.D. candidate at Harvard Law School."For me... the most rewarding aspect of teaching this seminar is what I hope is also the most rewarding aspect for the students: a broadened perspective on how to think about conducting human rights research," Creamer said.Entry to the seminar was determined by a competitive application process in September. The group numbers 24 students from a variety of concentrations, including government, history and literature, social studies, and biology.Sara O’Rourke ’09, a social studies concentrator, applied to the seminar to "learn about the dominant discourse and literature on human rights, and to meet other students whose work has to do with human rights." She is interested in women’s rights, current issues facing Islam, and the relationship between international and domestic law.
On alternate Thursday evenings, Creamer and students like O’Rourke gather to discuss various aspects of human rights scholarship. They have addressed ways to conceptualize human rights, how human rights norms develop, and the relationship between advocacy and scholarship. The class has also considered sociological, anthropological, and political science approaches to human rights research.
"The study of human rights can play a key role in introducing students to ethical dilemmas, normative approaches to their resolution, and cutting-edge contemporary problems and research findings," said Bhabha. "This is an inherently interdisciplinary field which offers students a wide range of disciplinary methodologies and the possibility of engaging with urgent real-life issues in a way that is both academic and practical."The theoretical framework of the course is complemented by practical examples. Students read case studies from leading scholars and enjoy talks by practitioners and researchers whose work is shaping the field. In early November, for example, Tamara Kay, assistant professor of sociology in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, presented her work on the ways in which Sesame Street International helps to promote human rights worldwide. Workshops with scholars and practitioners will continue in the spring.At the most recent course meeting on Nov. 20, the students discussed research methods with Beth A. Simmons, Clarence Dillon Professor of International Affairs and director of the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs. The group analyzed two chapters from Simmons’ forthcoming book, "Mobilizing for Human Rights: International Law in Domestic Politics" (Cambridge University Press, 2009). The text explores how the ratification of international treaties influences state behavior, to see if such treaties actually lead to better protection of human rights. Simmons uses both qualitative and quantitative analysis to evaluate issues such as equality for women, the prevalence of torture, and children’s rights.
Simmons answered questions about how she came to the topic, why she chose certain case studies, and the challenges of approaching human rights research from a social science perspective. She also recounted the difficulties of translating, or "coding," qualitative descriptions of human rights violations into a quantitative system for statistical analysis."I fully expect that this book will make people mad," she said. "There are those who will have a moral reaction—‘Why should we be quantifying human suffering? Is it not dehumanizing to cram this information into a regression?’
"I don’t want to belittle that point of view," she continued. “But my goal is to systemize the data as best we can to get a broad sense for what’s going on, so that we can add to—not supplant—the literature and accounts we have of individual cases of suffering. This will enable us to provide a different kind of reference."In addition to the workshops with scholars such as Simmons, the seminar also provides undergraduates the opportunity to present their own research projects. Many of the students are working on a junior essay, senior thesis, or independent project that is focused on human rights issues.O’Rourke, for example, is writing her thesis on the French Muslim Council, the official interlocutor between the Muslim community and the French state. She is exploring the politics of recognition and political representation in relation to national narrative.
"It has been rewarding to have a place where I can discuss ideas with students from a variety of fields and with a variety of interests, but who all share a common foundation—a deep interest in human rights," said O’Rourke.
IN A SPEECH this week, Iran's supreme leader found himself in rare agreement with President Bush. Echoing Bush's judgment that nuclear terrorism is "the single most serious threat to American national security," Ayatollah Ali Khamenei warned that, "sooner or later, international terrorists will get their hands on nuclear weapons and bring the security of the world…to an end."Bush has insisted that "for the sake of peace, the world must not allow Iran to have a nuclear weapon." Unfortunately, however, as a result of the failure of the Bush administration's strategy toward Iran, today Tehran stands seven years further down its path to nuclear weapons than it did on Jan. 20, 2001. Specifically, when Bush entered office, Iran had no operational uranium enrichment facilities. Today, as last month's International Atomic Energy Agency report documents, Iran is operating 3,492 centrifuges in a cascade that has produced 500 pounds of low-enriched uranium. This is one-third of what is required for Iran's first nuclear bomb.The Bush administration's strategy to prevent Iran's mastering technology for enriching uranium and producing nuclear weapons has been characterized as a "diplomatic slow squeeze." The administration has hoped that UN Security Council resolutions isolating Iran, enforced by sanctions, would persuade Tehran to suspend enrichment activity. Ironically, the IAEA chose Memorial Day to inform its member governments that for the third time, Iran has stiffed the demands of the Security Council resolution.In baseball, it's three strikes and you're out. After the undeniable failure of the third Security Council resolution imposing sanctions to slow Iran's nuclear program, Bush's Iran strategists should recognize that they have struck out.Hoping to divert attention from this record, the Bush administration has further confused the issue with exaggerated rhetorical attacks on those who advocate an alternative strategy of direct diplomacy including negotiations. Speaking to the Israeli Knesset on the 60th anniversary of Israel's creation, Bush accused proponents of negotiations with unfriendly regimes of "appeasement." More diplomatically, but equally pointedly, in addressing the American Israel Public Affairs Committee this week, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice called for another dose of the same medicine the administration has been prescribing, and sought to shift the blame to Iran, asserting that "The real question is: Why won't Tehran talk to us?"Facts are only obliquely relevant to political debate. But for the record, the charge of appeasement leveled against British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain focused not on his willingness to talk, but on his unwillingness to act. In the run-up to World War II, negotiation was not the issue. The question was whether Britain and France would act when Adolf Hitler violated Germany's Versailles Treaty commitments.Winston Churchill criticized the governments for capitulating when Hitler remilitarized the Rhineland, arguing that if they had responded, "There is no doubt that Hitler would have been compelled by his own General Staff to withdraw.…They had only to act to win." Instead, a confident Hitler went on to absorb Austria, and after Munich, Czechoslovakia.If Bush recognized the fact that his diplomatic squeeze has failed, and asked what he could do in his final eight months to advance US interests in relations with Iran, he would not have to look beyond his own Cabinet.In a 2004 report titled "Iran: Now is the Time for a New Approach," Defense Secretary Robert Gates urged that "the United States deal with the current regime rather than wait for it to fall." When asked about this recommendation during recent testimony on the Hill, Gates noted that he had been "in a happier place" then.But it is clear that Gates remains convinced that direct negotiations are imperative for solving the nuclear standoff. As he told the Academy of American Diplomacy last month, "We need to figure out a way to develop some leverage…and then sit down and talk with them."Negotiations are never certain to yield results. The alternative, a world of nuclear anarchy, is of great concern to both nations. Having seen the results of seven years of nonengagement, Bush could do his successor—whether Democrat or Republican—a great favor by proposing to negotiate with Iran now.Graham Allison is a Weatherhead Center Faculty Associate; Douglas Dillon Professor of Government and Director, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.
This article investigates how migrant social capital differentially influences individuals’ migration and cumulatively generates divergent outcomes for communities. To combine the fragmented findings in the literature, the article proposes a framework that decomposes migrant social capital into resources (information about or assistance with migration), sources (prior migrants), and recipients (potential migrants). Analysis of multilevel and longitudinal data from 22 rural villages in Thailand shows that the probability of internal migration increases with the available resources, yet the magnitude of increase depends on recipients’ characteristics and the strength of their ties to sources. Specifically, individuals become more likely to migrate if migrant social capital resources are greater and more accessible. The diversity of resources by occupation increases the likelihood of migration, while diversity by destination inhibits it. Resources from weakly tied sources, such as village members, have a higher effect on migration than resources from strongly tied sources in the household. Finally, the importance of resources for migration declines with recipients’ own migration experience. These findings challenge the mainstream account of migrant social capital as a uniform resource that generates similar migration outcomes for different groups of individuals or in different settings. In Nang Rong villages, depending on the configuration of resources, sources, and recipients, migrant social capital leads to differential migration outcomes for individuals and divergent cumulative migration patterns in communities.
A newer version of this paper was published on Demography, August 2008.This paper investigates how migrant social capital differentially influences individuals’ migration and cumulatively generates divergent outcomes for communities. To combine the fragmented findings in the literature, the paper proposes a framework that decomposes migrant social capital into resources (information about or assistance with migration), sources (prior migrants), and recipients (potential migrants). Analysis of multi-level and longitudinal data from 22 rural villages in Thailand shows that the probability of internal migration increases with the available resources, yet the magnitude of increase depends on recipients’ characteristics and the strength of their ties to sources. Specifically, individuals become more likely to migrate if migrant social capital resources are greater and more accessible. The diversity of resources by occupation increases the likelihood of migration, while diversity by destination inhibits it. Resources from weakly-tied sources, such as village members, have a higher effect on migration than resources from strongly-tied sources in the household. Finally, the importance of resources for migration declines with recipients’ own migration experience. These findings challenge the mainstream account of migrant social capital as a uniform resource that generates similar migration outcomes for different groups of individuals or in different settings. In Nang Rong villages, depending on the configuration of resources, sources and recipients, migrant social capital leads to differential migration outcomes for individuals and divergent cumulative migration patterns in communities.
Heading upcountry in Africa to visit small farms is absolutely exhilarating given the dramatic beauty of big skies, red soil, and arid vistas, but eventually the two-lane tarmac narrows to rutted dirt, and the journey must continue on foot. The farmers you eventually meet are mostly women, hardworking but visibly poor. They have no improved seeds, no chemical fertilizers, no irrigation, and with their meager crops they earn less than a dollar a day. Many are malnourished.Nearly two-thirds of Africans are employed in agriculture, yet on a per-capita basis they produce roughly 20 percent less than they did in 1970. Although modern agricultural science was the key to reducing rural poverty in Asia, modern farm science—including biotechnology—has recently been kept out of Africa.In Starved for Science Robert Paarlberg explains why poor African farmers are denied access to productive technologies, particularly genetically engineered seeds with improved resistance to insects and drought. He traces this obstacle to the current opposition to farm science in prosperous countries. Having embraced agricultural science to become well-fed themselves, those in wealthy countries are now instructing Africans—on the most dubious grounds—not to do the same.In a book sure to generate intense debate, Paarlberg details how this cultural turn against agricultural science among affluent societies is now being exported, inappropriately, to Africa. Those who are opposed to the use of agricultural technologies are telling African farmers that, in effect, it would be just as well for them to remain poor.
Future historians, I suspect, will look back on Saturday's anticlimactic G-20 gathering in Washington less as Bretton Woods 2.0 and more as a rerun of the London Economic Conference of 1933. Back then, representatives of 66 nations completely failed to agree on a concerted international response to the Great Depression. The fault lay mainly with the newly elected U.S. president, Franklin D. Roosevelt, who vetoed European proposals for currency stabilization.This time around, it wasn't the newly elected Democrat but the outgoing Republican who wielded the veto. Even before his counterparts reached Washington, President Bush made it clear that recent events had done nothing to diminish his faith in free markets and minimalist regulation. Over the weekend, it was the United States that resisted European calls for a new international regulatory body, opposed significant redefinition of the International Monetary Fund's role and showed no interest in the idea of a global stimulus package.A real opportunity has been missed. Just as happened in the 1930s, what began as an American banking panic has now escalated into a global economic crisis. And just as happened in the 1930s, a lack of international coordination has the potential to turn a recession into a deep and protracted depression.The problem that seems scarcely to have been discussed over the weekend is that each national government is currently responding to the crisis with its own monetary and fiscal measures. Some central banks have already slashed official rates to close to zero. Some treasuries have already launched multibillion-dollar bailouts and stimulus packages. The devil lies in the different timing and magnitudes of these measures. The absence of coordination makes it almost inevitable that we will see rising volatility in global foreign exchange and bond markets, as investors react to each fresh national initiative. The results could be nearly as disruptive as the protectionist measures adopted by national governments during the Depression. Now, as then, a policy of "every man for himself" would be lethal.At the heart of this crisis is the huge imbalance between the United States, with its current account deficit in excess of 1 percent of world gross domestic product, and the surplus countries that finance it: the oil exporters, Japan and emerging Asia. Of these, the relationship between China and America has become the crucial one. More than anything else, it has been China's strategy of dollar reserve accumulation that has financed America's debt habit. Chinese savings were a key reason U.S. long-term interest rates stayed low and the borrowing binge kept going. Now that the age of leverage is over, "Chimerica"— the partnership between the big saver and the big spender—is key.In essence, we need the Chinese to be supportive of U.S. monetary easing and fiscal stimulus by doing more of the same themselves. There needs to be agreement on a gradual reduction of the Chimerican imbalance via increased U.S. exports and increased Chinese imports. The alternative—a sudden reduction of the imbalance via lower U.S. imports and lower Chinese exports— would be horrible.There also needs to be an agreement to avoid a rout in the dollar market and the bond market, which is what will happen if the Chinese stop buying U.S. government bonds, the amount of which is now set to increase massively.The alternative to such a Chimerican deal is for the Chinese to turn inward, devoting their energies to "market socialism in one country," increasing the domestic consumption of Chinese products and turning away from trade as the engine of growth.Memo to President-elect Barack Obama: Don't wait until April for the next G-20 summit. Call a meeting of the Chimerican G-2 for the day after your inaugural. Don't wait for China to call its own meeting of a new "G-1" in Beijing.Niall Ferguson is a faculty associate of the Weatherhead Center; Laurence A. Tisch Professor of History, Department of History; and William Ziegler Professor of Business Administration, Business, Government, and the International Economy Unit, Harvard Business School.
On January 20, you will inherit a legacy of trouble: Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, Palestine, North Korea for starters. Failure to manage any one of them could mire your presidency and sap your political support—and threaten the country’s future. At the same time, you must not let these inherited problems define your foreign policy. You need to put them in a larger context and create your own vision of how Americans should deal with the world.
Some pundits believe that no matter who wins the 2008 election, he or she will be bound to follow the broad lines of President Bush’s strategy. Vice President Cheney has argued, "When we get all through 10 years from now, we’ll look back on this period of time and see that liberating 50 million people in Afghanistan and Iraq really did represent a major, fundamental shift, obviously, in U.S. policy in terms of how we dealt with the emerging terrorist threat—and that we’ll have fundamentally changed circumstances in that part of the world." President Bush himself has pointed out that Harry Truman suffered low ratings in the last year of his presidency because of the Korean War, but today is generally held in high regard, while South Korea is a democracy protected by American troops. Do not accept this over-simplification of history. By this stage of his presidency, Truman had built major cooperative institutions such as the Marshall Plan and NATO. In contrast, the unbridled unilateral style of the neoconservatives and assertive nationalists in the Bush administration produced a foreign policy that was like a car with a hair-trigger accelerator but no brakes. It was bound to go off the road.The crisis of September 11, 2001, created an opportunity for George W. Bush to express a bold vision. But one should judge a vision by whether it balances ideals with capabilities: anyone can produce a wish list, but effective visions combine feasibility with the inspiration. Among past presidents, Franklin Roosevelt was good at this, but Woodrow Wilson was not. David Gergen, director of the Kennedy School’s Center for Public Leadership, has described the difference between the boldness of FDR and that of the current president: "FDR was also much more of a public educator than Bush, talking people carefully through the challenges and choices the nation faced, cultivating public opinion, building up a sturdy foundation of support before he acted. As he showed during the lead-up to World War II, he would never charge as far in front of his followers as Bush." Bush’s temperament is less patient. As one journalist put it, "He likes to shake things up. That was the key to going into Iraq."The Context of Foreign PolicyA key skill you will need is "contextual intelligence." Chapman professor of business administration Nitin Nohria and lecturer of business administration Anthony Mayo have defined contextual intelligence as the ability to understand an evolving environment and to capitalize on trends in changing markets. In foreign policy, contextual intelligence is the intuitive diagnostic skill that helps you align tactics with objectives to create smart strategies in varying situations. Of recent presidents, Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush had impressive contextual intelligence, which starts with a good understanding of the current context of American foreign policy, both at home and abroad.Unfortunately, many academics, pundits, and advisers have often been mistaken about America’s position in the world. Two decades ago, for example, the conventional wisdom was that the United States was in decline, suffering from "imperial overstretch." A decade later, with the end of the Cold War, the new conventional wisdom was that the world was a unipolar American hegemony. Some neoconservatives drew the conclusion that the United States could decide what it thought was right, and others would have no choice but to follow. Charles Krauthammer celebrated this view as "the new unilateralism," and it heavily influenced the Bush administration even before the shock of the September 11 attacks produced a new "Bush Doctrine" of preventive war and coercive democratization.This new U.S. unilateralism of the early twenty-first century was based on a profound misunderstanding of the nature of power in world politics. Power is the ability to get the outcomes one wants. Whether the resources one possesses will produce such outcomes depends upon the context. In the past, it was assumed that military power dominated most issues, but in today’s world, the contexts of power differ greatly for military, economic, and transnational issues.A Liberal Realist VisionThe old distinction between realists and liberals needs to give way to a new synthesis that you might choose to call "liberal realism." What should a liberal realist foreign policy comprise?First, it would start with an understanding of the strength and limits of American power. We are the only superpower, but preponderance is not empire or hegemony. We can influence, but not control, other parts of the world. The context of world politics today is like a three-dimensional chess game. The top board of military power is unipolar; but on the middle board of economic relations, the world is multipolar. On the bottom board of transnational relations (such as climate change, illegal drugs, pandemics, and terrorism) power is chaotically distributed. Military power is only a small part of the solution in responding to these new threats. They require cooperation among governments and international institutions. Even on the top board (where the United States represents nearly half of world defense expenditures), our military is supreme in the global commons of air, sea, and space, but much more limited in its ability to control nationalistic populations in occupied areas.Second, a liberal realist policy would stress the importance of developing an integrated grand strategy that combines hard military power with soft “attractive power” to create smart power of the sort that won the Cold War. In a war on terrorism, we need to use hard power against the hard-core terrorists, but we cannot hope to win unless we gain the hearts and minds of the moderates. If the misuse of hard power creates more new terrorists than we can kill or deter, we will lose. Right now, we have no integrated strategy for combining hard and soft power. Many official instruments of soft power—public diplomacy, broadcasting, exchange programs, development assistance, disaster relief, even military-to-military contacts—are scattered throughout the government, with no overarching strategy or budget that even tries to integrate them with military power into a unified national-security strategy. We spend about 500 times more on the military than we do on broadcasting and exchanges. Is this the right proportion? How would we know? How would we make trade-offs? And how should the government relate to the nonofficial generators of soft power—everything from Hollywood to Harvard to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation—that emanate from our civil society?
Third, the objective of a liberal realist policy should be to advance the principle of "life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness" that has long constituted American political culture. Such a grand strategy would have four key pillars:
providing security for the United States and its allies;
maintaining a strong domestic and international economy;
avoiding environmental disasters (such as pandemics and negative climate change); and
encouraging liberal democracy and human rights at home and abroad where feasible at reasonable levels of cost.
This does not mean imposing American values by force. Democracy is better fostered by attraction than by coercion—and it takes time and patience. Here we should lead by example, heed Ronald Reagan’s adaptation of John Winthrop, and act like a "shining city on a hill." Overseas, the United States should try to encourage the gradual evolution of democracy where possible, but in a manner that accepts the reality of diversity. Right now, our calls for democracy are heard as an imperial imposition of American institutions. We need fewer Wilsonian calls to make the world safe for democracy, unless combined with John F. Kennedy’s rhetoric of "making the world safe for diversity."Five Major ChallengesAmong all the possible challenges in engaging the world—from a resurgent Russia to our interests in Latin America and Africa—such a liberal realist strategy for your administration should place priority on five major challenges.
Probably the greatest danger to the American way of life would be the intersection of terrorism with nuclear materials. Preventing this requires policies for counterterrorism, nonproliferation, better protection of foreign nuclear materials, stability in the Middle East, and attention to failed states.Political Islam and how it develops is the second priority. The current struggle against extreme Islamist terrorism is sometimes characterized as a "clash of civilizations." More accurately, it is a civil war within Islamic civilization—between a radical minority, which uses violence to enforce a simplified and ideological version of their religion, and a mainstream that has more tolerant views. Although the largest number of Muslims live in Asia, they are influenced by how the heart of this struggle is playing out in the Middle East, an area that has lagged behind the rest of the world in globalization, openness, transparent institutions, and democratization. More open trade, economic growth, better education, development of civil institutions, and gradual increases in political participation may help strengthen the mainstream over time, but so also will the way Muslims are treated in Europe and the United States. Equally important will be whether Western policies toward the Middle East attract or repel mainstream Muslims.The third major challenge would be the rise of a hostile hegemon as Asia gradually regains the three-fifths share of the world economy that corresponds to its three-fifths of the world population. Forestalling this outcome requires a policy that embraces China as a responsible stakeholder, but hedges against possible hostility by maintaining close relations with Japan, India, and other countries in the region.The fourth major threat would be an economic depression that could be triggered by financial mismanagement or a crisis that disrupts global access to the Persian Gulf (where two-thirds of world oil reserves are located). Meeting this challenge will require policies that gradually reduce dependence on oil while realizing that we will not be able to isolate the American economy from global energy markets and must not succumb to costly and counterproductive protectionism.The fifth major threat to our way of life may be termed ecological breakdowns such as pandemics or climate change. Again, part of the solution requires prudent energy policies, combined with leadership on climate change and greater cooperation through international institutions such as the World Health Organization.Finally, atop these five major threats, a liberal realist policy should look to the long-term evolution of world order, realizing the responsibility of the largest country in the international system to produce global public or common goods. In the nineteenth century, Britain defined its national interest broadly to include promoting freedom of the seas, an open international economy, and a stable European balance of power. Such common goods helped Britain, but benefited other countries as well. They also contributed to Britain’s legitimacy and soft power. In the early twenty-first century, the United States should similarly promote an open global economy and commons (seas, space, Internet), mediate international disputes before they escalate, and develop international rules and institutions. Because globalization will spread technical capabilities, and information technology will allow broader participation in global communications, American economic and cultural preponderance will become less dominant than at the start of this century. That is all the more reason to build institutions that make the world safe for diversity.Your Vision and Smart PowerThe United States needs to rediscover how to be a "smart power." That was the conclusion of a bipartisan commission that I recently co-chaired with Richard Armitage, the former deputy secretary of state in the Bush administration. A group of Republican and Democratic members of Congress, former ambassadors, retired military officers, and heads of nonprofit organizations was convened by the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. We concluded that the effects of the September 11 terrorist attacks have thrown America off course.Since the shock of 9/11, the United States has been exporting fear and anger, rather than our more traditional values of hope and optimism. Abu Ghraib and Guantánamo have become more powerful global icons of America than the Statue of Liberty. Terrorism is a real threat and likely to be with us for decades, but over-responding to the provocations of extremists does us more damage than the terrorists ever could. Success in the struggle against terrorism means finding a new central premise for American foreign policy to replace the current theme of a "war on terror." A commitment to providing for the global good can provide that premise.The United States can become a smart power by once again investing in global public goods—providing services and policies that people and governments in all quarters of the world want but cannot attain in the absence of leadership by the largest country. That means support for international institutions, aligning our country with international development, promoting public health, increasing interactions of our civil society with others, maintaining an open international economy, and dealing seriously with climate change. By complementing American military and economic might with greater investments in soft power and a broader vision, you can rebuild the framework that we will need to tackle the tough problems ahead.
Joseph S. Nye Jr. is former dean of the Kennedy School of Government and currently University Distinguished Service Professor and Sultan of Oman professor of international relations. His latest book is The Powers to Lead, just published by Oxford University Press.
The March 31, 2008 decision of Turkey’s Constitutional Court to hear a case that could bring down the governing Justice and Development Party (also known in Turkey as AKP) has provoked a constitutional crisis. The Court must decide if their allegedly anti-secular activities warrant shutting down the AKP and/or banning Prime Minister Erdogan, President Abdullah Gul and sixty-nine members of the party from politics for five years. The Court has banned other parties and politicians from politics in the past, including the previous two Islamist parties. This case, however, represents an increased threat to the democratic process and a thwarting of the popular will. The moderate Islamist AKP received 47 percent of the popular vote in the elections of July 2007, giving it a parliamentary majority and entitling it to run the government. Shutting down the party and banning its leaders from politics could set off political and economic turmoil in Turkey. Anticipated reactions range from potentially violent popular protests that could invite intervention by the Turkish military to a set back for Turkey’s economic recovery and further cause for the Europeans to block Turkey’s accession to the European Union. The Court is also considering a ban on the Kurdish political party, the Democratic Society Party (DTP). If both the DTP and AKP (which garnered a large number of Kurdish votes) are kept out of politics, this could increase support amongst Turkey’s Kurds for the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK). Turkey desperately needs to address the Kurdish issue in its southeast and the PKK terrorism emanating from northern Iraq. This constitutional crisis diverts the governmental efforts needed to address those issues. Political chaos in Turkey could also upset U.S. foreign policy objectives in Iraq and the greater Middle East. The administration has only recently begun to repair the relations with the republic that were ruptured over the Iraq war. Washington has shared intelligence over PKK havens in northern Iraq and permitted limited military intervention to root them out. The United States needs a stable Turkey that can cooperate with respect to the war in Iraq, Iranian nuclear proliferation and other issues affecting Gulf security. This crisis has its roots in the very foundation of the Turkish Republic. Its founding father, Kemal Ataturk, promoted the principle of secularization in order to further the goal of modernizing the new Turkish state. The Turkish military considers itself the guardian of this Kemalist concept of a secular state. It has not hesitated to take action against what it views as the increasing Islamization of Turkish politics under the majority rule of the AKP. The AKP first achieved majority rule in 2002. Even though it won only 34 percent of the popular vote, AKP gained a parliamentary majority because of the peculiarities of the Turkish electoral system. Among those who voted for the Justice and Development Party were people who were not necessarily Islamist but were seeking an alternative to the allegedly more corrupt, ineffective and splintered secular political parties. The AKP subsequently sought to consolidate its position of power by electing then Foreign Minister Gul as President of Turkey. The Turkish military opposed this move and attempted an “electronic coup” by issuing an online statement warning against Gul’s election. This backfired. In a showdown with the military, Prime Minister Erdogan won the elections in July 2007 and secured Gul’s election as President of the Republic. What spurred the public prosecutor to bring the case to the court was his belief that the AKP was using its parliamentary majority to aggressively promote an Islamist agenda. The AKP-led parliament has passed legislation allowing women to wear headscarves in universities. It has also unsuccessfully attempted to allow students who attend secondary religious schools (Imam Hatip schools) to more easily enter the general university system. Other actions by AKP-dominated municipalities include the banning of alcohol and the separation of men and women in parks and at festivities. The prosecutor is concerned that the AKP will be able to amend the constitution to allow the accelerated Islamization of Turkish politics. Ironically, by bringing the case, the prosecutor put the Constitutional Court in an untenable position. The Court has the power to impose the harsh remedy of shutting the AKP and its politicians out of the political process. It could also impose a lesser remedy of limiting state funding for the party. If it orders the ban, the Court will be viewed as interfering with the will of the people and the deepening of Turkish democracy. If it orders a lesser remedy, it will be viewed as approving the AKP’s actions. Whatever the Court’s ruling, AKP politicians may gain even greater popular support as happened when the military challenged it in 2007. The immediate solution to this lose-lose situation is for the Court to fashion a compromise remedy that will restrain what the prosecutor believes is the AKP’s aggressive pursuit of an Islamization agenda, while at the same time permitting it to participate in the Turkish political arena. The real answer to Turkey’s crisis is to be found in its political system. A compromise judicial outcome would enable a longer-term win-win solution. The constitutional crisis should sound a wake-up call to the opposition political parties in Turkey; they need to reform themselves and Turkey’s political system. Party leaders are autocrats who make all financial decisions and choose the candidates who run for office. The main opposition party, the Republican Peoples Party, in particular, needs to reform its leadership if it seeks to regain its credibility in the Turkish polity. Turkey’s opposition parties need to overcome their divisive politics and structure a coalition that has both the platform and the grassroots organization that can challenge what many see as the Islamization of Turkish politics, by democratic contest in the political arena and not by judicial or military intervention.