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Speaker Series

Past Speakers

Past Events

Wolfgang Wessels

On May 7, 2013, Professor Wolfgang Wessels gave a talk on the Eurozone Crisis.

Dr. Wolfgang Wessels is chairholder of the Jean Monnet Chair for Political Science at the University of Cologne since 1994 and was awarded an Ad personam Jean Monnet Chair in 2011. In 2007 he was awarded the Jean Monnet Award in gold and in 2011 the UACES Award for Lifetime Achievement in Contemporary European Studies. His priorities in teaching and research include the political system of the European Union, the role of the EU in the international system, the deepening and widening of the EU, modes of governance and theories and strategies of European integration. Prof. Wessels is co-editor of the "Jahrbuch der Europäischen Union" (32th Edition) and the "Europa von A-Z, Taschenbuch der europäischen Integration" (12th Edition) and has published widely in leading Journals and edited volumes. Prof. Wessels is currently publishing a book on the European Council. He is engaged in several research and teaching networks: he is chairman of the executive board of the Institut für Europäische Politik (IEP, Berlin) and of the Trans European Political Studies Association (TEPSA, Brussels). Since 2009 he is vice-president of the German consortium of the Turkish-German University. Since 1981 he is Visiting Professor at the College of Europe, Brugge and Natolin. Prof. Wessels has coordinated several research projects funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, the Fritz Thyssen and Volkswagen Foundations as well as by the European Commission. Presently he is coordinator of the Erasmus Academic Network "LISBOAN - researching and teaching the Treaty of Lisbon", the "EXACT" Marie Curie Initial Training Network and the "Observatory of Parliaments after the Lisbon Treaty (OPAL)".


Darius Ornston

On May 6, 2013, Professor Ornston gave a talk, "Small States Make Big Leaps: Institutional Innovation and High-Technology Competition in Western Europe"

Dr. Darius Ornston is an assistant professor in the Department of International Affairs at the University of Georgia, where he specializes in European politics, comparative political economy and comparative innovation policy. The talk is based on his recent book, When Small States Make Big Leaps, published by Cornell University Press. His work has also appeared in Comparative Political Studies, West European Politics and Governance.


Thomas Risse

On February 27, 2013, Professor Risse gave a talk, "Solidarity among strangers? European Identity, Politicization, and the Euro Crisis"

Thomas Risse holds a PhD from the University of Frankfurt and is Professor of International Politics at the Freie Universität Berlin, Germany. He is the co-ordinator of the Collaborative Research Center (Sonderforschungsbereich) 700 "Governance in Areas of Limited Statehood" and co-director of the Research College (Kolleg-Forschergruppe) "Transformative Power of Europe," both funded by the German Research Foundation( Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft).


Despina Alexiadou

On October 12, 2012, Professor Alexiadou gave a talk, "Ideologues, Partisans and Bureaucrats: the role of cabinet ministers and the Troika in economic policy-making in the European Union"

Dr. Alexiadou joined the department of Political Science at the University of Pittsburgh in August 2008 after having spent time at the University of Warwick, England, as an ESRC postdoctoral fellow. She received her PhD at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy, in December 2005.


Martin Kahanec

On May 31, 2012, Professor Kahanec gave a lecture on "Ethnic Diversity in European Labor Markets." 

Martin Kahanec is Associate Professor at the Central European University in Budapest. Senior Research Associate, Deputy Program Director "Migration", the leader of the research sub-area EU Enlargement and the Labor Markets and former Deputy Director of Research (2009) at the Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in Bonn, Germany. Co-founder and scientific director of Central European Labour Studies Institute (CELSI), Bratislava. He has held several advisory positions (the World Bank, the European Commission, OECD, etc.).


Vitaly Churkin

On April 27, 2012, the Honorable Vitaly Churkin—Russian ambassador to the United Nations—presented his lecture, "Cooperation Among Russia, the United States and the European Union in Global Affairs" at the University's Sié Chéou Kang Center for International Security and Diplomacy. Read about Churkin's lecture. Watch a video of Churkin's lecture.

Since May 2006, Ambassador Churkin has served in his current position as permanent representative of the Russian Federation to the United Nations. As a prominent leader in world affairs, he appears often in headlines regarding major foreign policy issues, such as the Russian position on Syria, Iran and other global debates.

Ambassador Churkin came to international prominence as the first Soviet official to testify in front of the U.S. House of Representatives in 1986 about the Chernobyl disaster. He has served as ambassador to both Belgium and Canada, and as ambassador-at-large to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

He has appeared as a guest on Charlie Rose and other programs. Ambassador Churkin is fluent in English, Mongolian, and French. His diplomatic rank is ambassador extraordinary and plenipotentiary.


Prime Minister Hashim Thaçi

On April 9, Kosovo Prime Minister Hashim Thaçi held a talk on "A Euro-Atlantic Vision for Kosovo: European Integration and Regional Dynamics." He entertained questions from the audience on a range of issues including visions for Kosovo's future.

Hashim Thaçi is the prime minister of Republic of Kosovo, the leader of the Democratic Party of Kosovo (DPK), and former political leader of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA).


Andrea Herrmann

On March 26, Andrea Herrmann held a talk, "Do Americans and Germans Create Firms Differently: How Institutions Influence Venture Creation Processes." 

Andrea Monika Herrmann is a Marie Curie Research Fellow at the 'Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy' at Columbia University and Assistant Professor at the 'Innovation Studies Group' of Utrecht University. She was a postdoctoral research fellow at the Max-Planck-Institut für Gesellschaftsforschung (Cologne) in 2006-2008. She holds a PhD from the European University Institute in Florence and an MSc from the London School of Economics. She has published articles on institutional theory, corporate competitiveness, strategy, innovation management, and methodology, and a book - One Political Economy, One Competitive Strategy? – with Oxford University Press, in 2008.


Igor Guardiancich

On Feb. 13, Igor Guardiancich gave a talk at the Josef Korbel School on "The Rise and Fall of Private Pensions in Central and East Europe."

Igor Guardiancich is a post-doctoral fellow at the Political Science Department of the University of Michigan. He has professional experience at the European Commission (2005), the European Trade Union Institute (2008) and the Academic Careers Observatory of the EUI's Max Weber Programme (2010-11). Guardia He has also been a consultant to the Belgian gov't. and the European Commission.


John Kornblum

On Thursday, January 26, Ambassador John Kornblum kicked off CSEW's launch with a talk titled, "Why Does Europe Matter?"

On January 27, Ambassador Kornblum, Martin Rhodes and Rachel Epstein held a roundtable discussion on the Crisis of the Eurozone, moderated by the Josef Korbel School Dean, Christopher Hill.

John Kornblum is a former diplomat, who has been at the center of the some of the most significant international developments of recent decades. He played a major role in Cold War diplomacy and in negotiating the post-Cold War security framework for Europe.

Kornblum's past roles have included:

  • U.S. ambassador to Germany (1997-2001)
  • Member of the State Department's policy planning staff under Henry Kissinger (1973–1975)
  • Director of the State Department's Office of Central European Affairs (1981–1985)
  • United States minister and deputy commandant in Berlin (1985–1987)
  • Deputy ambassador to NATO (1987–1991)
  • Ambassador and head of the U.S. mission to the OSCE in Vienna (1991–1994)
  • Assistant secretary

He is now an investment banker and international business consultant, and lives in Berlin.