1215 Events

Seminar - Open to the Public

Oil Money: Middle East Petrodollars and the Transformation of US Empire, 1967–1988

Thu., Sep. 30, 2021 | 12:15pm - 2:00pm


Speaker: David M. Wight, Visiting Assistant Professor, Department of History, University of North Carolina at Greensboro

Dr. David M. Wight will discuss his book Oil Money, which offers a new framework for understanding the course of Middle East–U.S. relations during the 1970s and 1980s: the transformation of the U.S. global empire by Middle East petrodollars. During these two decades, American, Arab, and Iranian elites reconstituted the primary role of the Middle East within the global system of U.S. power from a supplier of cheap crude oil to a source of abundant petrodollars, the revenues earned from the export of oil.

Everyone is welcome to join us online via Zoom! Please register in advance for this seminar:

Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper, right, and Navy Adm. John C. Aquilino, the Pacific Fleet commander, watch live-fire demonstrations aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Essex during RIMPAC 2020, Aug. 26, 2020.

U.S. Navy Photo/Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class John Luke McGovern

Seminar - Open to the Public

Returning to Rimland Containment? Historicizing Current American Policies in the Asia-Pacific

Thu., Sep. 23, 2021 | 12:15pm - 2:00pm


Speaker: Mesrob Vartavarian, Fellow, Harvard University Asia Center

The recent U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan has raised a host of questions regarding America's future strategic direction and geopolitical policies. This seminar argues that President Biden's hard pivot to Asia can potentially succeed in curbing China's revisionist aspirations if it takes the needs and distinct historical trajectories of America's Asia-Pacific alliance partners into account. It uses Japan, the Republic of Korea, and the Philippines as case studies.

Everyone is welcome to join us online via Zoom! Please register in advance for this seminar:

Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization: Treaty Negotiations in Geneva in 1994.


Seminar - Open to the Public

Veto Players, Treaty Effectiveness, and Multilateral Nuclear Arms Control

Thu., Sep. 16, 2021 | 12:15pm - 2:00pm


Speaker: Stephen Herzog, Senior Researcher in Nuclear Arms Control, Center for Security Studies, ETH Zurich; Associate, Project on Managing the Atom

Why do some treaties face difficult entry-into-force prospects after negotiators agree on their legal provisions? Multilateral nuclear arms control treaties, for example, often face far more contentious journeys to enter into force than their bilateral counterparts. These treaties usually indicate the number of states that must deposit ratification instruments, or may even require participation by specific states. To better understand such delays, Stephen Herzog presents a theory of treaty entry-into-force.

Everyone is welcome to join us online via Zoom! Please register in advance for this seminar: https://harvard.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJUkd-mhqjsvHdH15Dg8RHMId9xyGBgKSpQB 

President Donald J. Trump addresses the 72nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly, 2 October 2017.

White House Photo/D. Myles Cullen

Seminar - Open to the Public

Thinking Fast and Slow: Provocations and International Conflict

Thu., June 10, 2021 | 12:15pm - 2:00pm


Speakers: Hyun-Binn Cho, Assistant Professor in Political Science and International Studies, The College of New Jersey; Associate, Project on Managing the Atom; Alex Yu-Ting Lin, Research Fellow, International Security Program

Verbal threats between President Trump and Kim Jong Un, the killing of an Iranian general by a U.S. drone strike, and maritime clashes in the South China Sea have all led to concerns about "provocations" resulting in unwanted conflict. This seminar explores how individuals react to foreign provocations depending on how they process information. By doing so, it offers new insights into the links between provocation and international conflict.

Everyone is welcome to join us via Zoom! Please register before the event: 

Ayatollah Khamenei meets Vladimir Putin on November 23, 2015.

Wikimedia CC/english.khamenei.ir

Seminar - Open to the Public

International Order and its Discontents: Russia, Iran, and the Struggles for Recognition

Thu., June 3, 2021 | 12:15pm - 2:00pm


Speaker: Nicole Grajewski, Research Fellow, International Security Program

This seminar will examine the nature of the Russia-Iran relationship, drawing on research of Moscow and Tehran’s domestic foreign policy debates, archival documents, and elite interviews. It offers a framework that accounts for multiple expressions of power and the norms, ideas, values, and solidaristic bonds inherent in the evolution of the Russia-Iran relationship. 

Everyone is welcome to join us via Zoom! Please register before the event:

President Hassan Rouhani with a face mask, 25 July 2020. Rouhani says Iran is retaliating against U.S. sanctions.

Wikimedia CC/Tasnim News Agency

Seminar - Open to the Public

Calibrated Resistance: The Political Dynamics of Iran's Nuclear Policymaking under Trump

Thu., May 20, 2021 | 12:15pm - 2:00pm


Speaker: Abolghasem Bayyenat, Stanton Nuclear Security Postdoctoral Fellow, International Security Program/Project on Managing the Atom

Drawing parallel with domestic and international conditions leading to the successful conclusion of the JCPOA in 2015, this research seeks to put Iran's nuclear policymaking during the Trump administration into perspective and explain why Iran pursued the strategy of calibrated resistance, how this strategy became possible, and why alternative policies became unthinkable or impossible.

Everyone is welcome to join us via Zoom! Please register before the event:

The Well number one (Masjed Soleyman Well) was first oil well in Iran. The well was drilled on January 23, 1908 by the Anglo-Persian Oil Company.

Public Domain

Seminar - Open to the Public

Persian Petroleum

Thu., May 13, 2021 | 12:15pm - 2:00pm


Speaker:  Leonardo Davoudi, Researcher, Global History of Capitalism project, Oxford Centre for Global History, Oxford University; Author, Persian Petroleum

Striking oil in the Middle East transformed the modern geostrategic landscape. It galvanized great-power rivalries, exacerbated regional fractures, and fostered animosity towards foreign interference. Using newly-uncovered private papers, Persian Petroleum delves into the region's first oil find, at the turn of the twentieth century, to reveal the geopolitical setting, domestic context, and widespread intrigue that led to the creation of one of the world's largest oil companies.

Everyone is welcome to join us via Zoom! Please register before the event:

The flags of the United States and China.

FutureAtlas via Flickr

Seminar - Open to the Public

Avoiding Nuclear Fatalism: A Research Agenda

Wed., May 12, 2021 | 2:00pm - 3:30pm


A Project on Managing the Atom (MTA) seminar with William d'Ambruoso, Stanton Nuclear Security Postdoctoral Fellow with MTA and the International Security Program at the Belfer Center for Science & International Affairs.

Please RSVP to receive the Zoom link.

Forward Operating Base (FOB) Fenty, Jalalabad, Afghanistan, looking north to the southern edge of the Hindu Kush Mountains, 14 February 2011.

Nate Moir Photo

Seminar - Open to the Public

Parallel Hierarchies: A Political and Social History of Shadow Systems of Governance in Conflict

Thu., May 6, 2021 | 12:15pm - 2:00pm


Speaker: Nathaniel L. Moir, Ernest May Fellow in History & Policy, International Security Program

Great power competition is not synonymous with conventional approaches to warfare. Over the last sixty years, irregular conflict — including insurgency and counterinsurgency, information operations, and other ways of war — predominated in most conflicts. Through seven chronologically organized case studies, the speaker will focus on conflicts in East and Southeast Asia in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries to analyze how vanguard movements formed parallel hierarchies to gain socio-political control over competitors. 

Everyone is welcome to join us via Zoom! Please register before the event:

President Biden spoke with President Ghani on 14 April 2021, affirming U.S. support for continued development, humanitarian, and security assistance in Afghanistan and for a political settlement that lets the Afghan people live in peace.

White House Photo

Seminar - Open to the Public

After Disengagement: U.S. Interests and the Future of Afghanistan

Thu., Apr. 29, 2021 | 4:00pm - 5:30pm


Speakers: Laurel Miller, Director, Asia Program, International Crisis Group; William Ruger, Vice-President, Charles Koch Institute

President Biden has announced that U.S. combat forces will leave Afghanistan by September 11, 2021, ending America's longest war. What lies ahead? How will the end of America's military role affect conditions in Afghanistan, and what impact will this have on U.S. interests in the region and beyond?

Everyone is welcome to join us via Zoom! Please register before the event: