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Mershon Center for International Security Studies Annual Report 2008-09

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Title: Mershon Center for International Security Studies Annual Report 2008-09
Creators: Becker, Cathy; Mann, Melanie
Contributors: Maceyko, Ed; Hill, Pamela Steed
Keywords: Mershon Center Annual Report 2008-2009
national security
security studies
faculty research
graduate students
Issue Date: 2009
Publisher: Mershon Center for International Security Studies
Series/Report no.: Mershon Center for International Security Studies Annual Report. 2008-09
Abstract: Since 1967, the Mershon Center for International Security Studies has worked to fulfill the vision of Ralph D. Mershon. He gave his generous gift to The Ohio State University nearly 50 years ago to ensure that civilians would study military activities. The mission of the Mershon Center is to advance the understanding of national security in a global context. As the United States sends an increasing number of troops to Afghanistan while working to bring troops home from Iraq, the task remains urgent and complicated. The course of these conflicts has made it clear that strategies designed to accomplish political and social aims through the use of force require substantial cultural, historical, and area expertise. As the security agenda has grown, and as military institutions have increasingly turned to the academy for social scientific and humanist expertise, the Mershon Center has complemented its focus on the use of force and diplomacy with equal attention to the cultures and ideas that underpin security, and to the institutions that manage conflict. Projects sponsored by the center aim to explore fundamental questions such as: • How can military force be used effectively to advance political aims, and what can and should be done to counter insurgencies? • What role do national and religious identities play in conflict? Are they immutable or can we devise strategies to ameliorate the conflicts they generate? • When can multilateral institutions be effective in managing international conflicts and what are the best ways for domestic institutions to balance the need for executive authority and democratic practices? The Mershon Center promotes collaborative research on these themes among colleagues from more than 20 departments across Ohio State. It does this by funding multidisciplinary faculty and student research and undergraduate study abroad scholarships. The center also hosts numerous seminars and conferences, enriching intellectual life on campus by bringing some of the world’s leading scholars and practitioners to Ohio State. My colleagues at the center continue to push in new theoretical and practical directions contributing to both scholarly and policy ideas. When evaluating who was doing interesting work around the world, Foreign Policy magazine put my colleague Alexander Wendt in the top five and my colleague Randall Schweller in the top 25. Peter Mansoor has been in front of TV cameras and Congressional committees commenting on the war in Iraq and counterinsurgency warfare, while Robert McMahon was appointed chair of the U.S. Department of State’s Historical Advisory Committee. Both Edward Crenshaw and Craig Jenkins were awarded funding by the National Science Foundation for their work on terrorism and environmental security, respectively. Princeton University invited Dorry Noyes to spend a year there, and Mark Grimsley will spend a second year at the U.S. Army War College. The Mershon Center’s principal aim is to produce scholarship that has lasting value. This year my colleagues at the center published 22 books and almost 200 articles. This annual report highlights some of these and provides a glimpse of the research being done at Mershon. It also introduces many of the scholars and students carrying on the work of the center. For more information on projects and for access to recordings of the numerous lectures given at the center this past year, I invite you to visit our web site at mershoncenter.osu.edu. RICHARD K. HERRMANN DIRECTOR, MERSHON CENTER FOR INTERNATIONAL SECURITY STUDIES PROFESSOR, POLITICAL SCIENCE
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1811/44681
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