Posts by: Jessica Daniels
The 2017 edition of the traditional year-end “Where the Hell is Fletcher” video is here! It really needs no further introduction — you’ll figure it out. Be sure to watch for Admissions’ own Liz at about 3:41, and enjoy!
A clever enhancement to the video comes from almost-PhD-graduate Rizwan, who (having successfully defended his dissertation) took a minute to plot the video locations on a map.
Tagged with: WTHIF
In a previous post, I made a quick reference to the Fletcher Perspectives Gallery, housed online and at the Ginn Library and other offices, but I made a mental note to shine a brighter light on it at some future time. This is the time!
First, the background. At the end of the fall semester, our own Graduate Assistant Ashley took off her Admissions hat and replaced it with a curator’s cap to recruit photos. Students submitted those photos in January, and some were selected for the Spring 2017 Exhibition. The Perspectives Gallery is a time-honored tradition at Fletcher, but perhaps not a consistent one. Given the quality and range of the photos, I hope it’s back to stay! Please enjoy The Spring 2017 Perspectives Gallery, along with these past collections:
To entice you, check out this photo in the Spring 2017 Perspectives Gallery by Zareera Bukhari.
And also this one, by Hannah Wheeler:
Our next Five-Year Update comes from Vincent Fennell, whom I recall spent quite a bit of time around the Admissions Office during his two years in the MIB program. I recently caught up with him at an event, and I was reminded why it was so delightful to see him regularly.
I admit there’s a certain irony in writing an update about “life since Fletcher” when I’m currently only 30 minutes away from the Fletcher campus. However, it’s more a case of things coming full circle, rather than sitting still. Let me explain.
Before I joined the Fletcher MIB class of 2011, I worked at State Street Corporation in Boston. I decided to pursue an MIB as a way of developing my passion for international business. I had seen during my time at State Street that no business happens in a vacuum. There are so many “non-business” variables to an internationally successful business that I felt these were best addressed in an International Affairs School. I had already lived a pretty international life — albeit tame by Fletcher standards — but I wanted an education that could help me try to make sense of it all, help me become, in the words of the late Dean Bosworth, “culturally fluent.”
After I graduated from Fletcher in 2011, my wife, daughter, and I moved to England where I started a job at the Strategy Office for Hitachi Ltd. in their European Headquarters. This job came as a direct result of the internship I had in Tokyo with Hitachi the summer before. In what might be a Fletcher first, I was an Irishman who got a job in London while living in Boston after an internship in Tokyo.
Working for Hitachi was a dream post-Fletcher job for me. Each and every week felt like an applied session of the courses I had taken at Fletcher. Some weeks I was involved in Smart City discussions with the Japanese Ministry for Economy in Spain, while other times I was helping lay the foundations for a renewable hydrogen energy storage system at the Nissan test facility at their factory in Sunderland. At Fletcher I had taken a course on Petroleum in the Global Economy. This proved to be an invaluable foundation in energy discussions that I referred to constantly.
If I wasn’t focused on Smart Cities, I was helping negotiate the terms of a first of its kind Smart Energy Grid demonstration project in the UK or speaking with the Istanbul municipality about about municipal water network management systems. This is where I gained a whole new appreciation for my negotiation course and the importance of frameworks and BATNAs (Best Alternatives to a Negotiated Agreement).
Toward the end of my tenure at Hitachi, I was asked to undertake a market analysis on the nascent “Industry 4.0” or Fourth Industrial Revolution. Industry 4.0, simply put, is a catch-all for the automation of factories. Through this research and by meeting with a wide variety of software companies and manufacturing companies, I found the catalyst for the next step in my career: digitization.
Digitization and Industry 4.0 were not topics I had really explored in great detail while at Fletcher. I had taken courses in Innovation and even explored an internship with a few tech startups, but I always thought that I wasn’t “techie” enough. I’m not a software engineer and didn’t know anything about coding. What I experienced after Fletcher is the understanding of the critical need for both clear communication and lateral thinking in the technology arena.
Midway through 2015 I was offered a chance to move back to the U.S. and work with my former team at State Street, where I currently lead various internal digitization initiatives. My role is to help make State Street a market leader in the financial services industry. Digitization is rapidly changing the realm of possibilities within the financial services sector and the business is significantly different than when I left in 2011. It’s really exciting to be at the frontier of a changing global industry.
The last thing I want to say is about the Fletcher community. When I was at Fletcher everyone always talked about the Fletcher family as an invaluable resource. While I was at Tufts, this was always tangible in the form of people to reach out to with career-related questions. It wasn’t until I left Fletcher that I realized the true value of this global community. I feel inspired, fortunate, and proud to be a member of this unique and wonderful tribe.
Fletcher is not a huge place, and a year when we add four new faculty members is noteworthy. I can’t do a better job of describing this process and its results than our academic dean, Steven Block, did, and I’m simply going to share the message he sent to the community.
I’m pleased to announce the addition for four new faculty at Fletcher.
Many of you will already have met Monica Toft, who joined us this semester as a Professor of International Politics. Monica comes to Fletcher from the University of Oxford, where she was Professor of Government and Public Policy at the Blavatnik School of Government. She has also been a Professor of Strategy at the Naval War College and a Professor of Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School. Since receiving her PhD in Political Science from the University of Chicago, she has published widely in the areas of ethnic conflict, civil war, and the politics of religion. In addition to numerous papers in top journals, Monica’s recent books include: God’s Century: Resurgent Religion and Global Politics, and Securing the Peace: The Durable Settlement of Civil Wars. In addition to her research and teaching in these areas, Monica is establishing and directing the School’s new Center for Strategic Studies.
We have also successfully concluded three faculty searches, the results of which are as follows:
International Criminal and Humanitarian Law
Our new law professor is Tom Dannenbaum. Tom is currently Lecturer in Human Rights and Director of the MA in Human Rights at University College London. He has also been a Visiting Lecturer and Human Rights Fellow at Yale Law School, where he received his JD in 2010. In addition, Tom earned his PhD in Politics from Princeton in 2014. He has published numerous papers in international law journals, and Tom’s book, Why Aggression is a Crime and Why It Matters, is forthcoming on Cambridge University Press in 2017.
Susan Landau joins both The Fletcher School and the Tufts Computer Science Department as a bridge professor of cybersecurity. Susan has extensive experience in both academia and industry as a cybersecurity policy specialist. She joins us from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, where she is Professor of Cybersecurity Policy, and from University College London, where she is a Visiting Professor in the Department of Computer Science. Susan has also been a Visiting Scholar in Computer Science at Harvard, and a senior engineer at both Sun Microsystems and Google. She received her PhD in Computer Science from MIT, and is widely recognized as a leading expert and prize-winning scholar in the area of cybersecurity policy. Her books include Surveillance or Security? The Risks Posed by New Wiretapping Technologies and Privacy on the Line: the Politics of Wiretapping and Encryption.
History of U.S. Foreign Relations
While we can never truly replace Alan Henrikson, we’ve hired Chris Miller to take on the tradition of teaching the history of U.S. foreign relations in Alan’s place. Chris joins us from Yale University, where he completed his PhD in History in 2015 and then stayed on as Associate Director of the Brady-Johnson Program in Grand Strategy. Chris’s research focuses on the Russian economy and foreign relations. His first book, The Struggle to Save the Soviet Economy, was published in 2016; his second book, Putinomics: The Price of Power in Russia. Russia’s Economy from 1999-present, is forthcoming. I was pleased recently to be able to introduce Chris to Alan, and capture this symbolic passing of the torch.
Credit for the success of these searches goes to Dan Drezner for chairing the history search, Ian Johnstone for chairing the law search, and to Michele Malvesti and Michael Klein for representing Fletcher on the joint cybersecurity search committee.
I’ve tucked away links to a cornucopia of different news items, and today seems like a good day to share them. I know you may have caught this information somewhere else, but here it is again — just in case.
Several members of the community have new books. Among them are Dean Stavridis, with his book on leadership.
Here’s a nice interview with Admissions’ own Graduate Assistant, Ashley. She’s graduating soon. We miss her already.
Though he’s not a member of the Fletcher faculty, I found this profile of Professor Daniel Dennett, from the school of Arts and Sciences, to be very interesting. There’s a thread that connects him to Fletcher, in that Professor Dennett’s full title is “Austin B. Fletcher Professor of Philosophy and University Professor.”
Also interesting: this article about Mike Balaban, F75. (A good example of how one never knows where a Fletcher degree will lead.)
New this year! A podcast produced by the Fares Center.
Remember Mariya’s post about the Ginn Wish Tree? The Tufts Daily picked up on it, too. And speaking of Mariya, she participated in the annual Faces of Our Community presentation from the Arts of Communication class.
Mediterranean cuisine. Need I say more? Delicious!
I’ll leave the list here. There’s more that I could share, but there’s always another day!
One day a random thought popped in my head: There are a lot of Fletcher alumni on the faculty. And they span a broad range of experience. Some are early in an academic career while others are already on their second career, having worked many years in government, business, or NGOs before returning to the Hall of Flags. Still others are wearing two hats — spending part of their time at Fletcher and the remainder at a different school or organization.
I pulled together a list and shared it with the faculty to be sure I hadn’t left anyone out. In response, alumnus-in-chief Dean Stavridis noted, “We hire our own proudly!” In the final list, below, I’ve linked the professors to their faculty pages so that you can see the scope of experience they bring to Fletcher. Some professors have faculty research profiles, too, if you want to scout out more information. You can also find Faculty Spotlight posts for Professor Gallagher and Professor Moghalu.
The Alumni Professors are:
On a related note, just as I was gathering information for this post, I learned about yet another graduate who will soon return to Fletcher. Dr. Abi Williams will share his time between Fletcher and directing the the Tufts Institute for Global Leadership. A prime example of an alumnus who will bring vast experience to the classroom, Dr. Williams has worked with The Hague Institute for Global Justice, the United States Institute of Peace, and the Center for Conflict Analysis and Prevention. Earlier, he was with the United Nations as Director of Strategic Planning for Secretaries-General Ban Ki-Moon and Kofi Annan, as well as in senior political and humanitarian roles in peacekeeping operations in the Balkans and Haiti. His fellow alumni on the faculty, whether they knew him as a student or when interacting with him in a previous post, are enthusiastically welcoming Dr. Williams back to campus.
This week, Tufts University released a video to welcome newly admitted students, and particularly international students, to all of its undergraduate and graduate schools. Featuring several current Fletcher students, with Dean Bhaskar Chakravorti the first of the speakers, the video expresses a view that is fundamental to the university, and even more deeply embedded at Fletcher: We all benefit from a diverse international community. Even the mayors of Boston, Medford, and Somerville joined in to reaffirm the welcome on behalf of our host cities.
I hope you’ll appreciate the message conveyed through the video. Fletcher — and all of Tufts University — looks forward to welcoming new international students who will join us in September, and we appreciate those who are already studying here.
Tagged with: Tufts
Though we’re tip-toeing up to their six-year post-graduation mark, I’m happy to introduce another member of the Class of 2011. Philippa Brown completed the one-year mid-career MA program, and is now a consultant specializing in designing and implementing programs focused on counter-terrorism and stabilization, as well as early recovery work in conflict environments. Her bio further says that, “She has just completed a three-year posting to the British Embassy Mogadishu, Somalia, where she covered two thematic areas: leading the multi-disciplinary counter-terrorism team, and designing and delivering the UK’s bilateral stabilization program. Prior to her work in Somalia, she designed and managed the UK’s counter-terrorism program in Pakistan, focused on criminal justice capacity building in Punjab. Philippa also deployed to Afghanistan as part of the UK’s support to the Provincial Reconstruction Team in Helmand 2009-10.”
As one member of the small group of “mid-career” MA students, I had already been working internationally prior to Fletcher. After ten years working in London as a UK civil servant, I was heading the Counter Narcotics Team in the multinational Provincial Reconstruction Team in Helmand. Two weeks later, I found myself at Fletcher Orientation in Medford. It was a bit of a culture shock.
I had heard about the MA program from a work friend who was based in Khandahar, working with the U.S. military. I mentioned my interest in going back to school to study international relations. He said, “You’ve got to go to Fletcher.” I had anticipated studying in the UK but had a look. I was really impressed with the courses available, the professors (How many superstar academics is it possible to have in one school?), and the international mix of the student body. I was further impressed when I met a current Fletcher student visiting Lashkar Gah on his summer internship — everything you hear about the Fletcher community is true!
On arriving, I sat in the auditorium at Fletcher, with hundreds of other students, and felt a sense of awe. It was even more international than I had expected. It was hard to whittle down the list of courses I wanted to take, and I had only one year at Fletcher to complete everything. I tried to cover a mixture, combining Professor Nasr’s Comparative Politics, Professor Maxwell’s Humanitarian Action, Professor Shultz’s Role of Force, Professor Block’s Agricultural Economics, and Professor Scharbatke-Church’s Design Monitoring and Evaluation, which absolutely changed my perspective on how we can deliver better results in the field. Even now, I feel some regret about the classes I didn’t manage to squeeze in — Professor Mazurana’s Gender and Conflict and Professor Drezner’s Classics of International Relations.
It was intense. I found myself working just as hard as I had in Afghanistan, but it was endlessly fascinating. There was just so much going on that I found it really important to be selective in deciding what to take on: I really enjoyed the Security Studies Program lunches, with their fascinating speakers; SIMULEX was a lot of fun; the ski trip was FREEZING but great. And the chance to cross-register for a couple of Harvard courses gave me a chance to widen my circle even further.
After leaving Fletcher, I came back to the UK and left the civil service, deciding to make the leap into consultancy that I’d been considering for a few years. Since then, I have spent almost all my time overseas: first in Pakistan working on criminal justice reform; and then in Somalia, working on counter-terrorism and stabilization. I am currently a Visiting Fellow at the Institute for Development Studies at the University of Sussex, as well as consulting on international security issues. I have also continued to enjoy the Fletcher family, catching up with a Fletcher crowd for dinners when transiting Nairobi, and now reconnecting with classmates back in London. I look back on my time in Medford as a bit of a whirlwind: intense, challenging, and a period of real growth. And I use the skills and knowledge I gained from Fletcher every single day.
Returning to the Fletcher Admissions inbox and the many questions within, Admissions Graduate Assistant Cindy tackles a student life question.
New Fletcher students often wonder how they’ll get around town without access to a car. Have no fear! There are plenty of options available for you to get to and from campus, and also ways for you to get to popular areas in neighboring cities.
Many students live within walking distance of the campus. Depending on where you live, you might be separated from campus by a small hill, but students who live within walking distance are usually happy with their choice.
For those who live further afield, taking public transportation is the most common way to get around. There are dozens of bus lines throughout the Greater Boston area, and it is relatively easy to check out the MBTA (Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority) website and figure out the best routes to take from any location. The bus routes that come onto the Tufts campus are the 80, 94, and 96.
Although it doesn’t come directly onto campus, the best option to go from Tufts to downtown Boston is the MBTA subway train — which everyone calls the “T” — from nearby Davis Square. It takes about 20 minutes to reach the center of Boston, and along the way there are four stops in Cambridge, for those wanting to visit Harvard or MIT. The option to take a bus or subway definitely expands the circle of convenient places to live.
Be on the lookout at the beginning of each semester for a notification from Tufts about purchasing a “Charlie Card.” Students are eligible to purchase a discounted bus-only or bus/train pass at the beginning of each semester, which gives you unlimited rides. Taking the bus or train expands the circle of convenient places to live.
If you would like to cut down on your walking and public transportation time, a great option is to bike to and from Fletcher and around the area. It is definitely a cheaper way to go, and there are plenty of places to store your bike on campus. If you are worried about the safety of your bike, I recommend purchasing a U-Lock and registering the bike with the Tufts Police Department.
If you do have access to a car, students can purchase a decal permit for parking on campus. Parking is limited, however, and students may only park in designated areas around the Tufts campus, so many students think it’s best not to have a car. If you’re in a pinch and need to get somewhere quick, Uber and Lyft are great resources, and they may provide discounted rates for students in areas near the Tufts campus. This is a good option if you are cross-registering for a class at Harvard and happen to miss the bus one day. The campus also has several Zipcars that you can borrow, if you have a Zipcar membership. There’s even a Zipcar in the parking lot directly behind Blakeley Hall dormitory.
Last, but not least, Tufts offers a shuttle service, nicknamed the “Joey.” You can grab the Joey right near Fletcher and take it to Davis Square. It also makes several stops on the Tufts campus.
Despite the usual urban-area traffic, it’s pretty easy to get around the Medford/Somerville/Boston area. Once you have lived here for a little while, you will figure out the best way to get to and from campus, and you’ll travel like a pro!
Tagged with: Ask Cindy
In March, the foreign service world lost a diplomat with an astounding career. Ambassador Deane R. Hinton, whose many life accomplishments included a degree from Fletcher in 1952, died at the age of 94.
The American Academy of Diplomacy summarized Ambassador Hinton’s 48-year diplomatic career as starting in 1946 with his first assignment as a foreign service officer at the Legation in Damascus, Syria.
He was ambassador to Zaire (1974-75), El Salvador (81-83), Pakistan (83-87), Costa Rica (87-89), and Panama (90-94). He was considered among the foremost Latin American experts in the State Department. He earlier served in other capacities as a Foreign Service Officer: Damascus, Syria (46-49), Mombassa, Kenya (50-52), France, Belgium, Guatemala (67-69), where he directed USAID programs, and Chile (69-71), where he was also director of USAID. In between country ambassadorships to Zaire and El Salvador, he was drawn upon for his expertise in economics, his main area of study, as Representative of the U.S. (Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary) to the European Economic Community in Brussels (76-79), after which he served as Assistant Secretary for Business and Economic Affairs (79-81). He was designated a Career Ambassador in 1987, a rare distinction among foreign service officers.
In its obituary, The New York Times focused on one particular episode of Ambassador Hinton’s career, when he was “rebuffed by the Reagan administration over his accusations of human rights abuses by Salvadoran security forces and right-wing ‘death squads.'” The Times goes on to note:
Leftist Salvadoran guerrillas, emboldened by the Marxist Sandinistas’ success in neighboring Nicaragua, had been trying to overthrow the country’s ruling junta. But Mr. Hinton was determined. He encapsulated his mission this way: “Save the economy, stop the violence, have the elections and ride into the sunset.”
But after an election campaign in which fending off far-right candidates was at least as demanding as subduing leftist insurgents, Mr. Hinton gave a more modest goal: “We were not going to let it become a Marxist totalitarian state.”
In a speech in El Salvador in October 1982, he also delivered an ultimatum, saying El Salvador must make progress “in advancing human rights and in controlling the abuses of some elements of the security forces,” or it would lose American military and economic aid.
He denounced El Salvador’s legal system and far right, which he blamed for thousands of murders.
The speech had been cleared by the State Department but not, apparently, by the White House. Presidential aides were quoted as saying afterward that “the decibel level had risen higher than our policy has allowed in the past.” The administration was particularly uncomfortable with Mr. Hinton’s use of the term “death squads.” He was told to refrain from any further public criticism of rights abuses.
And the Washington Post obituary highlighted yet a different episode.
Mr. Hinton held his first ambassadorship under President Gerald R. Ford, serving as representative to what was then Zaire, where President Mobutu Sese Seko expelled him for an alleged assassination conspiracy. “Total nonsense,” Mr. Hinton said. “If I’d been out to get him, he’d have been dead.”
Ambassador Hinton was born in Missoula, Montana on March 12, 1923 and retired in 1994. He died on March 28, 2017.
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