In his April visit to Stanford University, Alexander Stubb, former Prime Minister of Finland and current member of the Finnish Parliament spoke on the state of geopolitics following Brexit and the election of Donald Trump. A self-described "liberal internationalist", Stubb argued that no matter what happens in the world, it is important to "remain cool, calm, and collected" as people have a tendency to exaggerate the events of the time in which they live. In order to understand the current epoch, Stubb highlighted the importance of three key dates and two key events. The first date, 1945, marked not only the end of World War II, but also the beginning of the structure of international organizations that prevails today and the beginning of bipolarity. The fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 marked the end of bipolarity, broader and deeper integration within the structure of international organizations, and a reconciliation of East and West. The final date, 2016, is significant because of its two key events: the British vote to leave the European Union and the election of Donald Trump as the President of the United States. These two events constituted a shock to the international order and symbolized a repudiation of the prevailing liberal international order. These two events, Stubb argued, have weakened the West. Brexit, he stated, will not only be an event of historical significance, but it is an inescapably lose-lose situation; both the European Union and the United Kingdom will be weakened as a result of Brexit. Trump's election, in his view, while a shock to the international order, is likely to be less damaging than Brexit as his term is limited and American institutions are remarkably resilient. However, Trump's presidency has ushered in the greatest instability in foreign policy that we have seen in decades. Stubb argued that the events of 2016 are likely to result in an international power vacuum.
In the remainder of his talk, Stubb explored whom would be likely to fill this power vacuum. His answer pointed to different entities taking leadership in different domains. In the realm of free trade, Stubb hypothesized that China will take the lead, and was quick to note the irony of a communist state becoming the global leader in free trade. He stated that U.S. military power will not disappear. Rather, he expects that the U.S. and Russia will jointly lead the world militarily. Finally, he argued that the values power vacuum is likely to be filled by the EU, particularly under German leadership. Yet, this would have been far less likely if Marine Le Pen had prevailed in the second round of the French presidential elections. He made clear, however, that the international system is still quite messy and these anticipated outcomes are far from certain.
To listen to this talk, please visit the FSI podcast station "World Class" on SoundCloud.
Alexander Stubb has served as Prime Minister, Finance Minister, Foreign Minister, Trade and Europe Minister of Finland. He was a Member of the European Parliament from 2004-2008 and in the national government from 2008-16. He was the Chairman of the National Coalition Party from 2014-16 and is currently a Member of the Finnish Parliament. Stubb's background is in academia and civil service. He holds a Ph.D. from the London School of Economics and Political Science and has published extensively. His expertise includes European and International Affairs, Foreign and Security Policy, and the Euro and the Global Economy. His current interests include Brexit, global affairs, the Fourth Industrial Revolution (digitalization, robotization and artificial intelligence), and health and exercise science. Stubb is a frequent commentator on international affairs for many global news channels and writes a regular column for the Financial Times and for Dagens Industri, the Swedish business journal.
Featured Faculty Research: David Holloway
We would like to introduce you to some of The Europe Center’s faculty affiliates and the projects on which they are working. Our featured faculty member this month is David Holloway. David is the Raymond A. Spruance Professor of International History, a professor of political science, and an FSI senior fellow. He earned his Ph.D. from Cambridge University and joined the faculty at Stanford in 1986. During his time at Stanford, David has been co-director of CISAC (1991-1997), director of FSI (1998-2003), chair and co-chair of the International Relations Program (1989-1991), and associate dean in the School of Humanities and Sciences (1997-1998).
In his research, David is interested in the international history of nuclear weapons, science and technology in the Soviet Union, and the relationship between international history and international relations theory. He is the author of Stalin and the Bomb: The Soviet Union and Atomic Energy, 1939-1956 (1994), which was chosen by the New York Times Book Review as one of the 11 best books of 1994, won the Vucinich and Shulman prizes of the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies, and has been translated into six languages. David is also the author of The Soviet Union and the Arms Race (1983) and co-author of The Reagan Strategic Defense Initiative: Technical, Political and Arms Control Assessment (1984). In his current research, David is interested in the international history of nuclear weapons as well as the current state of the nuclear world. Related to these interests, David recently organized a meeting of retired senior military officers at Stanford to discuss ways of enhancing strategic stability and reducing the risk of nuclear war and, in the Winter quarter, he co-taught a course on European Security in the Cold War. His most recent scholarly articles have been on totalitarianism and science and on the creation of the International Atomic Energy Agency.
Featured Graduate Student Research: Anne Duray
We would like to introduce you to some of the graduate students that we support and the projects on which they are working. Our featured graduate student this month is Anne Duray (Classics). Anne is a Ph.D. candidate in Classical Archaeology in the Department of Classics at Stanford University.
In her research, Anne is interested in the Late Bronze Age and Early Iron Age in the Aegean, as well as the history of archaeology in Greece, and the relationship between archaeological practices and knowledge production, interpretation, and narrative creation. In her dissertation, preliminarily entitled The Idea of Greek (Pre)history: Archaeological Practice and Knowledge Construction in the Case of Early Greece.”, Anne examines both final publications and archival material in order to understand the relationships between archaeological fieldwork, interpretation, and historical narratives during the period of transition from the Late Bronze Age to the Early Iron Age (c. 1200-950 BCE) in Greece, which has been viewed as a pivotal turning point in Greek history. Using a framework that draws upon the field of science studies and reflexive approaches to archaeological fieldwork, she focuses on the specific community of practice of Anglo-American scholars and their excavations during the 1950’s-1970’s. Her working hypotheses are, first, that archaeological practice and disciplinary development during these decades was in some ways a response to late-19th to early-20th century legacies, but at the same time laid the groundwork for the study of the Late Bronze Age and Early Iron Age in the following decades into the present and, second, that difficulty in reaching consensus and the nature of the discourse surrounding understanding the Late Bronze Age-Early Iron Age transition is a result not only of disciplinary divides, but also of the specific way and period in which they converge.
Funded by The Europe Center, Anne spent six weeks during the winter quarter in Athens conducting archival research for her dissertation. During her time in Athens, Anne conducted research at the library of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens and at the archival collections at the British School at Athens. She spent the majority of her time in Athens examining the correspondence preserved in the archive of Vincent Desborough, a prominent British archaeologist active during the mid-20th century. She processed nearly 700 pieces of correspondence received by Desborough from 1939 to 1968. Her analysis of Desborough’s correspondence not only contributed important insights in support of her two hypotheses, but also offered significant information concerning the network of scholars and knowledge exchange practices during these decades. While a significant portion of the correspondence Desborough maintained was with a core group of colleagues, Anne found the overall internationalism of Desborough’s network to be noteworthy: over these years he was in contact with British, American, Greek, Swedish, German, Italian, Czech, French, and Polish scholars. An additional point of significance in light of her research questions is that he was also in contact with not only fellow Early Iron Age archaeologists, but also with historians and Bronze Age scholars. The correspondence Anne was able to examine in the Desborough archive provided a wealth of fruitful material for her dissertation. The disciplinary tensions, research agendas, and scholarly networks that arise from the correspondence can be traced and connected not only with contemporary publications, but also with excavation archives. Desborough had connections to two sites in particular that she is studying for her dissertation: Lefkandi/Xeropolis (first excavated 1964-66) and Nichoria (1969-1975). Correspondence from the Desborough archive reveals that the directors of both sites were in communication with Desborough concerning the origins and motivations for undertaking these projects, both of which yielded archaeological material from the Late Bronze Age-Early Iron Age transition.
Anne has been awarded an advanced student fellowship at the American School of Classical Studies at Athens for the 2017-2018 academic year. During that time, she will be conducting additional archival and on-site analysis in Greece. She plans to complete and defend her dissertation during the 2018-2019 academic year.
Please visit our website
for more information about our Graduate Student Grant program.
Spring 2017 Graduate Student Grant Competition Winners Announced
Please join us in congratulating the winners of The Europe Center Spring 2017 Graduate Student Grant Competition:
- Edward Barnet, History, "Homo Musicus: The Early Modern Musical Science of Human Beings."
- Alberto Comparini, Italian literature, "Literature and Existentialism in Italy."
- Brooke Durham, History, "'An unforgettable experience': French Students Working Abroad and The End of Empire."
- Christopher Hutchinson, German Studies, "Going Viral: Illness and Mediality in Sixteenth-Century Germany."
- Friederike Knüpling, German Studies, "The German Adam Smiths?"
- Hans Lueders, Political Science, "Explaining Persistent Differences in Democracy Satisfaction in Post-Reunification Germany."
- Iris Malone, Political Science, "Insurgency Formation and Civil War Onset."
- Rachel Midura, History, "The Published Courier: The Culture of the Imperial Post, 1550-1720."
- David Pickel, Classics, "Disease and the Ancient Roman Economy."
- Nicola Pierri, Economics, "Credit Constraints and Firms' Productivity Growth."
- Michael Pollmann, Economics, "Hospital Provision of Care in the German Diagnosis Related Group System."
- Michael Schwalbe, Psychology, "Improving Literacy and Numeracy in the UK: Evidence from a Large-Scale Field Experiment."
- Daniel Smith, Art and Art History, "Volgete Gli Occhi: Depicting Seeing and Surveillance in Medieval Siena."
- Alexandra Sukalo, History, "Surveillance's Double-Edged Sword: Intelligence and Soviet Identities in Soviet Ukraine, 1918-1953."
- Beata Szymkow, History, "Power in Transition, Nations in Transition: Poles, Ukrainians, Jews, and State-Building in a Central European City, 1918-1939."
- Michael Webb, Economics, "How Does Automation Destroy Jobs? The 'Mother Machine' in British Manufacturing, 1990-2015."
Matthew Wormer, History, "Opium Empire: Economic Thought, Corporate Power, and the Rise of Free Trade Imperialism."
Please visit our website for more information about our Graduate Student Grant program.
The Europe Center Sponsored Events
May 12-13, 2017
Iberian Studies Program Conference
Inscribed Identities: Writing as Self Realization
Stanford Humanities Center
Please visit our website for more information.
This conference is co-sponsored by the Division of Literatures, Cultures, and Languages, the Stanford Humanities Center, and The Europe Center's Iberian Studies Program.
May 25, 2017
9:30AM – 12:30PM
"From Emigration to Post-Migration and the “Refugee Crisis”: Historical Perspectives on Migration in Austria and Germany"
Open to Stanford faculty, students, visiting scholars and staff.
RSVP by 5PM May 24, 2017.
Please visit our website for more information.
Save the Date: June 5, 2017
11:30AM - 1:00PM
Daniel Stegmuller, University of Mannheim
Room 400 (Graham Stuart Lounge), Encina Hall West
No RSVP required.
This seminar is part of the Comparative Politics Workshop in the Department of Political Science and is co-sponsored by The Europe Center.
Save the Dates: Wednesdays, June 14, 2017 – September 6, 2017
7:00PM – 9:30PM
SGS Summer Film Festival
“Finding Place: Immigration, Refugees and Borders Across the World "
European Security Initiative Events
Save the Date: May 15, 2017
12:00PM - 1:15PM
Ivo Daalder, Former U.S. Permanent Representative to NATO
Oksenberg Conference Room, Encina Hall, 3rd Floor
RSVP by 5:00PM May 10, 2017.
May 22, 2017
12:00PM - 1:15PM
Mark Leonard, Director of the European Council on Foreign Relations
"The Connectivity Wars: European Security and the Weaponization of the Internet, Trade, Migration, and International Institutions"
Reuben Hills Conference Room, Encina Hall, 2nd Floor
RSVP by 5:00PM May 17, 2017.
We welcome you to visit our website for additional details.