Conversations host Harry Kreisler welcomes Dr. John A. Nagl for a discussion of his life as a scholar/soldier in the U.S. military. After recalling the highlights of his career, Dr. Nagl, focusing on the problem of counterinsurgency, analyzes the army’s failings as a learning organization. He discusses the trajectory of military thinking after the Vietnam War and the long struggle to recognize the unconventional ways of warfare conducted by insurgents and terrorists. He describes how a group of innovators in the military came to draft the US Army/Marine Corp Counterinsurgency Field Manual. With the completion of that document and the subsequent change in leadership in the Pentagon and in Iraq, the U.S. reversed the course of the war and set the stage for withdrawal from the conflict.
Conversations host Harry Kreisler welcomes General James Mattis (U.S. Marine Corp. ret.), former Head of Central Command for a discussion of his military career. Topics covered include: his formative years, the skill set and temperament required to be a marine, his command philosophy, his battle experience in Afghanistan and Iraq, the role of the military in securing peace, the contribution of the military to the policy debate, and his advice for students as they prepare for the future.
Conversations host Harry Kreisler welcomes Gro Harlem Brundtland, Mimi and Peter E. Haas Distinguished Visitor at Stanford, for a discussion of her lifelong commitment to public service at the national and international level. She traces her intellectual odyssey and recalls her many roles--Norwegian Prime Minister, Chair of Global Commission on Environment and Development, and Director General of the World Health Organization. She also describes the attributes of her leadership: the combination of political skills and scientific training that she developed as she worked to implement a vision of a just society in which women's rights, global health, and sustainable development were insured.
Conversations host Harry Kreisler welcome Nobel Laureate Carol Greider, Daniel Nathans Professor and Director of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Johns Hopkins University, for a discussion of her intellectual odyssey. Topics covered include her education; her Nobel winning research on telomeres and telomerase; the implications of this research for treatment of disease; science education; and women in science.
Conversations host Harry Kreisler welcomes Karl Eikenberry, who commanded coalition forces in Afghanistan and served as U.S. Ambassador there. Reflecting on his career as soldier and diplomat, Ambassador Eikenberry recalls his formative experiences and compares the skill set and challenges of the two postings. He evaluates the volunteer military force, analyzes the situation in Afghanistan as the US stands down, describes the problems posed by exit strategies after intervention, and reflects on the implications of the rise of China and the US pivot toward Asia.
Conversations host Harry Kreisler welcomes Nobel Laureate Gary S. Becker for a discussion of his intellectual journey. Topics covered in the conversation include: the influence of his parents, his education, Milton Friedman, his early work on discrimination, the skills and temperament required for work in economics, applying economic analysis to social problems, the Chicago school of economics, creativity, rational choice theory, markets vs. government, the impact of ideas on policy, the communications revolution, the lessons of the 2008 economic collapse, and advice for students preparing for the future.
Conversations host Harry Kreisler welcomes Sylvia A. Earle, Explorer-in-Residence at the National Geographic Society, for a discussion of her work as a research scientist, oceanic explorer, entrepreneur, and public educator. Tracing her intellectual journey,Earle talks about the influence of her formative years, her education, the importance of the ocean for life on earth, and the challenges of being both a scientist and a citizen concerned about the fate of the oceans.
Welcome to a Conversation with History. I'm Harry Kreisler of the Institute of International Studies. Our guest today is Robert William Fogel, 1993 Nobel Laureate in Economics. Dr. Fogel is the Charles R. Walgreen Distinguished Service Professor of American Institutions at the Graduate School of Business, and Director of the Center for Population Economics at the University of Chicago. He is the 2004 Hitchcock Lecturer on the Berkeley campus.
Conversations host Harry Kreisler welcomes Micah Zenko of the Council on Foreign Relations for a discussion of his book, Between Threats and Wars. Topics covered include the political goals of US foreign policy after 911, the unique qualities of non state threats to American security, the efficacy of discrete military operations for dealing with these threats,the development, role, and limits of drone aircraft technology, and the conflicting views of the military and civilian officials on the use of limited military action.
Conversations host Harry Kreisler welcomes Professor Richard H. Thaler for a discussion of behavioral economics. Professor Thaler discusses theory in economics, how observed human behavior points to anomalies that contradict what theory predicts will happen, and the implications of behavioral economics for public policy including its contribution to understanding the 2008 economic collapse and to shaping future regulation.