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Josef Korbel School of International Studies


  • George DeMartino

    George DeMartino


    George DeMartino is a Professor of international economics at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies of the University of Denver. He has served on faculty of the School since 1993. Prior to that, he taught at Dickinson College (Carlisle, PA), and Trinity College (Hartford, CT). He earned his BA at Harvard University; an MA in Industrial Relations at Warwick University (Coventry, England); and his PhD in Economics at the University of Massachusetts. Prior to graduate school, Professor DeMartino served as a union organizer and negotiator for AFSCME, AFL-CIO in Connecticut.

    Professor DeMartino's research interests include global political economy, industrial relations, ethical foundations of economic theory and policy, and political economy theory. He has published widely in these areas, including his book Global Economy, Global Justice: Theoretical Objections and Policy Alternatives to Neoliberalism (Routledge, 2000). Over the past several years he has explored professional ethical questions that arise in the context of the practice of economists. He has advocated for the creation of the new field of professional economic ethics in several articles, and in 2011 published The Economist's Oath: On the Need for and Content of Professional Economic Ethics (Oxford aUniversity Press). At present he is co-editing with Deirdre McCloskey the Oxford University Press Handbook on Professional Economic Ethics, a text that will launch the field (expected publication, 2014).

    Professor DeMartino teaches courses on international trade, the normative foundations of global economic policymaking, theories of political economy, and professional ethics in international affairs. Currently he is writing papers on fair trade, the nature of economic harm, reparations in the context of historical injustice, the ethics implicit in the work of Julie Graham, and other matters pertaining to professional economic practice.

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  • Jack Donnelly

    Jack Donnelly

    Andrew Mellon Professor, John Evans Professor

    Jack Donnelly received his PhD in Political Science from the University of California at Berkeley in 1982. As a student at Berkeley, he studied political theory (principally with Hanna Pitkin) and international relations (with Ernie Haas and Ken Waltz) and did his dissertation on the development of the concept of human rights -- a good way to combine my fields in an interesting substantive area of obvious policy relevance. Human rights has remained his principal scholarly interest ever since.

    Most of his writings have been in the broad, multidisciplinary field of human rights. They include three books -- The Concept of Human Rights, Universal Human Rights in Theory and Practice (second edition, 2003), and International Human Rights (third edition, 2006) -- and over fifty articles and book chapters, which have been translated into nine languages. He is perhaps best known for a series of articles on human rights and cultural relativism, which advance a strong argument for a relatively universalistic approach to implementing internationally recognized human rights. He has also written on the theory of human rights, the development and functioning of international human rights regimes, human rights and development, group rights, humanitarian intervention, and democracy and human rights. If you want to see a sampling of his work, the second edition of his best known book, Universal Human Rights, is probably the place to look. His current human rights work focuses on a book-length project comparing conceptions of human dignity, with extended case studies of the West and China from "ancient" to "modern" eras.

    Realism and International Relations (Cambridge University Press, 2000) was a project of a very different nature. It offers a broad and critical reading of the realist tradition that nonetheless attempts to be fair to and to recognize the positive contributions of realism. The thrust of Professor Donnelly's argument is that the tradition is actually much more diverse and open than many (both within and outside of it) imagine, and that standard arguments for restricting policy largely to the national interest defined in terms of power do not stand up to careful scrutiny. In the area of international theory, he is currently working on a series of articles that aim to reconstruct our understanding of the nature and dimensions of international political structures. So far, two have come out in print: Sovereign Inequalities and Hierarchy in Anarchy: American Power and International Society, European Journal of International Relations 12 (2006): 139-170 and Rethinking Political Structures: From 'Ordering Principles' to 'Vertical Differentiation' -- and Beyond. International Theory 1 (2009): 49-86. (A long contemplated book on ancient Greek international society is, once again, on hold.)

    Dr. Donnelly's principal teaching responsibilities in the graduate programs at the Korbel School lie in the area of international relations theory. Pretty much every year he teaches what he describes as first, second, and third year international politics theory courses. The first year course, which is part of the International Studies Core, focuses on realism and its critics, introducing students to a variety of realist theorists, as well as a number of critical perspectives, ranging from mainstream institutional approaches through hard core postmodernism. His current second year course, aimed at advanced MA and PhD students, is Comparing International Societies (which looks at a number of historical international societies, going back to ancient Sumeria). The third year course, intended primarily for PhD students, looks at recent theoretical work undertaken from a variety of "social constructivist" perspectives, rather broadly understood.

    Professor Donnelly's other principal areas of teaching responsibility are human rights. He regularly offers Korbel's Introduction to Human Rights course and a course on Human Rights and Foreign Policy. As time allows, he also teaches Ancient Political Theory, Modern Political Theory, and Classics of International Theory, a course that cuts across political theory and international politics. Current and past syllabi for these and other courses he teaches are available at

    Like most of the faculty at Korbel, Dr. Donnelly sees his teaching and research work as closely interconnected. For example, the realism book both grew out of and helped to shape the material he presents in the introductory international politics theory course. The Greeks project has both generated and benefitted from the course on Comparing International Societies, which also helped to spur the new book project on human dignity. When he teaches human rights, he is able to draw on three decades of intensive study of the field. And he hopes that his students benefit from having direct access -- things are pretty informal at the Korbel School, and Professor Jack Donnelly is one of the more informal of the bunch -- to one of the leading scholars in the field. He also, like most of his colleagues, takes his teaching very seriously. Some classes go better than others, of course, but he tries to teach demanding yet lively classes, even when dealing with theoretical material that some students initially consider dry and arcane. Dr. Donnelly received the Graduate Student Association's "Best Professor" award no less than the University's "Distinguished Scholar" award.

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  • Alan Gilbert

    Alan Gilbert

    John Evans Professor

    Alan Gilbert is a John Evans professor at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver. His research and expertise lie in the areas of democratic theory, international relations theory, social theory, history of political thought, ethics, philosophy of science and social science, slavery and the American Revolution, comparative revolutions, violence and non-violence, democracy and the arts, and medieval Islam and Europe.

    Professor Gilbert is the author of Marx's Politics: Communists and Citizens (Rutgers, 1980), Democratic Individuality (Cambridge, 1990), Must Global Politics Constrain Democracy (1999) and Black Patriots and Loyalists: Fighting for Emancipation in the War for Independence (Chicago March, 2012).

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  • Nader Hashemi

    Nader Hashemi

    Associate Professor, Director of the Center for Middle East Studies

    Nader Hashemi is the Director of the Center for Middle East Studies and an Associate Professor of Middle East and Islamic Politics at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver. He obtained his doctorate from the Department of Political Science at the University of Toronto and previously was an Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at Northwestern University and a Visiting Assistant Professor at the UCLA Global Institute.

    His intellectual and research interests lie at the intersection of comparative politics and political theory, in particular debates on religion and democracy, secularism and its discontents, Middle East and Islamic politics, democratic and human rights struggles in non-Western societies and Islam-West relations. He is the author of Islam, Secularism and Liberal Democracy: Toward a Democratic Theory for Muslim Societies (Oxford University Press, 2009) and co-editor of The People Reloaded: The Green Movement and the Struggle for Iran's Future (Melville House, 2011) and the The Syria Dilemma (MIT Press, 2013). He is also the co-editor of The Middle East Today book series with Fawaz Gerges (LSE) at Palgrave Macmillan.

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  • Micheline Ishay

    Micheline Ishay


    Micheline Ishay is a Professor at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver. She became a University of Denver Distinguished Scholar in 2008, was the Director of the International Human Rights Program from 1992 to 2010, and acted as Executive Director of the Center on Rights Development (CORD) from 1993 to 1999. From 2010 to 2012, and in the Spring of 2013, Professor Ishay was a Visiting Professor at Khalifa University, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. Prior to her time at Korbel, she was an Assistant Professor at the Hobart and William Smith College (1990-1992) and worked as a member of the Center for Democracy Collaborative, University of Maryland (2004).

    Dr. Ishay's research and expertise lie in the fields of international relations, human rights, political theory, history, methodology, sociology, comparative politics, U.S. foreign policy and Middle Eastern politics.

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  • Carl Pletsch

    Carl Pletsch

    Adjunct Professor
    Upon joining CU Denver in 1997, I worked in the Office of Teaching Effectiveness as Coordinator of Academic Technology and Co-organizer of Boot Camp for Professors. I directed the $16,000,000 Information Technology Initiative that transformed all of the Auraria Campus classrooms into smart classrooms and built 25 computer classrooms. I initiated the plan for the CU Denver Honors Program (University Honors and Leadership) and now serve on the steering committee of the Honors Program.
    In the History Department at CU Denver, and in my faculty positions at other universities previously, I have taught Intellectual History (European and American). Now I am limited to general European History. I was the History Department's director of graduate studies and served on the department's executive committee.
    My research interests include the history of the idea of genius as exemplified by my book Young Nietzsche, Becoming a Genius.While teaching at Miami University in Oxford Ohio I served two terms as city councilman.
    Prior to joining the History Department UCD I taught at several other universities, beginning as a Harper Teaching Fellow at the University of Chicago. I was a Fellow of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey. I held tenure track positions at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill & Miami University of Ohio. I held a Mellon Fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh. I was Distinguished Visiting Professor at the United States Air Force Academy. I was interim Provost and Academic Vice President at the University of New Haven in Connecticut. I spent my most recent sabbatical as visiting scholar at the Australian National University in Canberra.
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