"Like the president he now serves, Anton doesn't understand how the global trading order actually works. Trade agreements are long and complicated today because they are no longer primarily concerned with reducing tariffs (which are already quite low). Instead, contemporary trade agreements are mostly about harmonizing labor, regulatory, environmental, and copyright standards across many different societies, precisely for the purpose of creating fairer competition between states. Agreements of this kind are very much in America's interest, because otherwise U.S. workers would have to compete with foreign industries where labor and environmental standards are much lower than they are in the United States."
A seminar with Kevan Harris, Sociologist and Postdoctoral Research Associate, Near Eastern Studies, Princeton University. This event is part of the fall 2013 seminar series led by MEI Visiting Scholar Djavad Salehi-Isfahani: "The Politics and Economics of Transition in the Arab World." For more information about this series, click here.
The 2013 June election of Hassan Rouhani in Iran has once again realigned domestic politics in the Islamic Republic. With a potential shift in US-Iran relations on the horizon, this talk surveys the economic challenges faced by the new government, the economic actors involved, and possible trajectories for the country's post-revolutionary social compact.
About Kevan Harris:
Kevan Harris is a sociologist and postdoctoral research fellow at Princeton University's Department of Near Eastern Studies focusing on economy and society in post-revolutionary Iran. He was awarded the Social Science Research Council International Dissertation Research Fellowship in 2009–10 to conduct fieldwork in Iran, and was a US Institute of Peace Jennings Randolph Peace Scholar in 2010– 11. His publications include: "The Rise of the Subcontractor State: Politics of Pseudoprivatization in the Islamic Republic of Iran," International Journal of Middle East Studies (2013); “The Brokered Exuberance of the Middle Class: An Ethnographic Analysis of Iran’s 2009 Green Movement,” Mobilization (2012); and “A Martyrs’ Welfare State and Its Contradictions: Regime Resilience and Limits through the Lens of Social Policy in Iran,” Middle East Authoritarianisms: Governance, Contestation, and Regime Resilience in Syria and Iran, edited by Steven Heydemann and Reinoud Leenders, Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press (2013).