Weatherhead Scholars Program

Image of the Weatherhead Scholars Program affiliates

The Weatherhead Scholars Program welcomed its second group of participants this fall. This class of 2019 includes both academic scholars, such as visiting faculty and postdoctoral researchers, and practitioners in the field of international affairs, such as diplomats and military officers. Collectively termed as Scholars, most are here for the full academic year and have dedicated their time to pursuing various research projects. In addition, they participate in the Center’s closed seminar series for affiliates, the Weatherhead Forum, and in a biweekly breakfast meeting. It is a diverse group in terms of research discipline and topic as well as choice of profession.  

Affiliates in the Scholars Program have made valuable connections since arriving on campus. Several are collaborating with faculty through their participation in the Center’s research clusters, including those working with WCFIA Director Michèle Lamont in the Weatherhead Research Cluster on Comparative Inequality and Inclusion: Matthias Koenig, visiting scholar from the University of Gottingen and the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity; Çetin Çelik, visiting scholar from Koç University; Talia Shiff, postdoctoral fellow (PhD from Northwestern University); Silvia Rief, visiting scholar from the University of Innsbruck; Kate Williams, postdoctoral fellow, and research fellow at Cambridge University; Puneet Bhasin, postdoctoral fellow (PhD from Brown University); and Adrien Abecassis, Fellow, and diplomat, French Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Participating in the Weatherhead Research Cluster on Global Transformations are Tomoko Okagaki, visiting scholar from Dokkyo University, and Jack Loveridge, postdoctoral fellow and recent PhD from the University of Texas at Austin. Fellow Bobby Lankford, a career officer in the United States Air Force, is affiliated with the Weatherhead Research Cluster on International Security. Several scholars, including postdoctoral fellows Monica Marks (PhD from Oxford University) and Merih Angin (PhD from Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies), and Fellow Matthew Eichburg, United States Army, are pursuing their research projects through other Harvard affiliations. 

Image of Amy Holmes presenting her research

In late October, the biweekly Weatherhead Forum showcased the Weatherhead Scholars Program. The session, “Institutional Dynamics of Recognition—Global, Comparative, and Local Perspectives,” offered all Center affiliates the opportunity to learn about the research of scholars Matthias Koenig, Talia Shiff, and Amy Austin Holmes, visiting scholar from American University in Cairo, who represented the program at this session. 

At the program’s biweekly breakfast meetings, scholars share their research, and also receive constructive feedback from their colleagues in the program. Fall-term presenters include visiting scholars Tomoko Okagaki and Amy Austin Holmes; Fellows Bernard Fischer-Appelt, a business professional from Hamburg, and Stratos Efthymiou, consul general of Greece in Boston.

Scholars and fellows also interact regularly with Harvard students—both undergraduates and graduate students. Sandra Goh, a fellow currently on leave from Microsoft Asia Pacific, has seized the opportunity to coach and mentor Harvard undergraduates as well as PhD students, and she continues to share her work experience with international students as well. 

Image of Talia Shiff presenting her research


1. 2018–2019 affiliates of the Weatherhead Scholars Program. Photo credit: Martha Stewart

2. Visiting Scholar Amy Austin Holmes (University of Cairo) presents her research at a Weatherhead Forum on “Institutional Dynamics of Recognition—Global, Comparative, and Local Perspectives” on October 31, 2018. Photo credit: Lauren McLaughlin

3. Postdoctoral Fellow Talia Shiff (Northwestern University) presents her research at a Weatherhead Forum on “Institutional Dynamics of Recognition—Global, Comparative, and Local Perspectives” on October 31, 2018. Photo credit: Lauren McLaughlin