Mershon Center for International Security Studies
March 3, 2014
In This Issue
Peter Mansoor
Gen. Raymond E. Mason Jr. Chair in Military History
On having his most recent book, Surge: My Journey with General David Petraeus and the Remaking of the Iraq War (Yale, 2013), selected as a finalist for the inaugural 2013 Guggenheim-Lehrman Prize in Military History.  Based on newly declassified documents, Surge is an insider's view of the most decisive phase of the Iraq War.

In the Media
Rudy Hightower
Doctoral Student in Public Affairs
"Ukraine: Headed for Revolution?"
All Sides with Ann Fisher
Februarly 20, 2014
Peter Mansoor
Gen. Raymond E. Mason Jr. Chair in Military History
"Book TV: 'Surge'"
Februarly 6, 2014

About Mershon Memo
Mershon Memo is a weekly e-mail newsletter distributed by the Mershon Center for International Security Studies, a unit of the Office of International Affairs at The Ohio State University.
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Coming up at the Mershon Center
Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Judith Recanti and Colonel Orly Gal
"Creating a Healthy Society: The Vision, Role, and Contribution of Women"
7 p.m., OSU Hillel, Wexner Jewish Student Center, 46 E. 16th Ave.

Judith Recanti Judith Yovel Recanti (left) and Col. Orly Gal (Res.) are two extraordinary women, each a leading social activist in Israel. In 1998 Judith founded NATAL - Israel Trauma Center for Victims of Terror and War. Judith's mission was to build a healthier Israeli society by addressing the needs of people who have experienced psychological trauma related to the ongoing conflict in Israel, including trauma from terrorism, military experience, and rocket attacks. Orly joined in this mission as NATAL's executive director in 2006. Since then, Judith and Orly have created what is now considered the largest, most comprehensive, and "go to" organization for war and terror-related trauma treatment in Israel. NATAL is an apolitical organization that treats any Israeli (whether Jewish, Muslim or Christian) who has experienced conflict-related trauma. RSVP required to  Read more at
Friday, March 7, 2014

Charli Carpenter
"Lost Causes: Agenda Setting and Agenda-Vetting in the Global Issues Networks"
Noon, 120 Mershon Center, 1501 Neil Ave.

Charli Carpenter Charli Carpenter is associate professor of political science at University of Massachusetts-Amherst. Her interests include national security ethics, the laws of war, agenda-setting in transnational advocacy networks, gender and political violence, humanitarian affairs and the role of information technology in human security. She will discuss human security networks and agenda-setting. Her research centers on the role of network structure in norm development, and contributes to the growing engagement by IR scholars with network theory as a theory, rather than as a metaphor for alternate forms of governance. She is particularly interested in how changes in information technology are both enhancing and also constituting networked forms of governance in the human security area. Read more and register at
Friday, March 21, 2014

Qiusha Ma
"The Development of NGOs and Environmental Activism in China"
3:30 p.m., 120 Mershon Center, 1501 Neil Ave.

Qiusha Ma Qiusha Ma is associate professor of East Asian studies at Oberlin College.  Her publications include two books, Nongovernmental Organizations in Contemporary China and To Change China: the Rockefeller Foundation's Century-long Journey in China, and numerous articles in English and Chinese. In this talk, she will outline the legal environment of NGOs in China, and their major features, importance, and challenges. Environmental grassroots organizations compose the most active, numerous, and vibrant sector among NGOs, and Ma will use the emergence of environmental activism to discuss the NGO-government interface and NGOs' strategy to survive and thrive in China. Read more at
Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Business for Peace Collaborative
"USIP Public Education for Peacebuilding Support Program"
4:30 p.m., 120 Mershon Center, 1501 Neil Ave.

Ann Fisher WOSU's Ann Fisher will lead a discussion on how economic development and business affects peace, and how peace building and end of conflicts impact regional development, rule of law, and economic growth. Organized by Mershon affiliates Esther Gottlieb and John Carlarne, the panel will be introduced by David Manderscheid, executive dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and include Patrice McMahon, associate professor of political science at University of Nebraska-Lincoln; Christopher Gelpi, Chair of Peace Studies and Conflict Resolution at the Mershon Center; Yoram Haftel, associate professor of international relations at Hebrew University in Jerusalem; and Mason Foster Ye, an undergraduate business scholar at Ohio State. This event is underwritten by the U.S. Institute of Peace Public Education for Peacebuilding Support Initiative.  Read more and register at

Featured News
Student Peace Conference 2014
Mershon affiliates John Carlarne (left), Craig Jenkins (second from left), and Christopher Gelpi (right) stand with students at the Student Peace Conference and Peace Awards.  The students (left to right) include Jocelyn Smith, Chasity Boedicker, Lauren Chen, Tatiana Hernandez, Evan Carfagno, and William Lee. 
Students organize peace conference, awards ceremony


Each year the student Peace Studies Society at Ohio State organizes a speaking event and awards ceremony to recognize the efforts of undergraduates who have contributed to the cause of peace and justice.


This year almost 70 people attended a half-day conference held January 24 at the Mershon Center.


Sessions at the conference included "Speak Peace in a World of Conflict," with Tom Carlisi and Jeff Brown of the Center for Compassionate Communication, and "Peace through Service in Rotary," with the Rotaract Club of OSU.


A human rights panel and discussion included Patrick Coy, director of the Center for Applied Conflict Management at Kent State University; Julie Hart, professor of sociology and peace and justice at Ohio Dominican University; and John Carlarne, peace studies coordinator at the Mershon Center.


Integral to the conference was the Student Peace Award, given by the Peace Studies Society with support from the Mershon Center. Lauren Chen, a biomedical science major at Ohio State, was recognized for her work to empower children in the slums of Lenana, Kenya, through education and civic engagement.


Students applied or were nominated through an online process in which they were asked to describe their contributions to peace in the local and global community. The award supports students with a $250 scholarship.

For more information about the Student Peace Conference and Peace Awards, please see the Mershon news story. You can find links to video recordings, workshop packets and a photo album on the event web page.

Other Events
Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Alice Conklin
"Down from the Ivory Tower: Anthropology and Anti-racism at UNESCO, 1945-1955"
5 p.m., Faculty Club Grand Lounge, 181 S. Oval Drive
Sponsored by College of Arts and Sciences

Alice Conklin Alice Conklin is professor of history at The Ohio State University and an affiliate of the Mershon Center.  Her lecture considers what happened when a global network of idealistic social scientists based in Paris got caught up in the power politics of the early Cold War. Lessons from the past, she argues, can illuminate the possibilities and perils facing intellectuals today who seek to use their science to make a difference in the world. Read more and register
Tuesday, March 11, 2014

International Awards Ceremony
Honoring the Columbus Crew
11:30 a.m., Hyatt Regency Ballroom, 350 N. High St.
Sponsored by Columbus Council on World Affairs

On March 11, 2014, the Columbus Council on World Affairs will host the 11th Annual International Awards Ceremony, honoring the Columbus Crew as the International Organization of the Year. The Crew, chaired by Anthony Precourt, brings a global perspective to our community, from its roster of multinational players and management to is engagement with a culturally diverse fan base. In hosting World Cup qualifiers and other international matches, the Crew positively positions our region on the global stage and provides a window into the world right here in Columbus. Representatives from the Crew will be joined by a co-honoree from the local K-12 education community.  Read more and register
Thursday, March 13, 2014

Rudy L. Hightower
"Understanding Ukraine"
7 p.m., Bexley Public Library, 2411 E. Main Street, Bexley
Sponsored by Bexley Public Library

Rudy Hightower Rudy L. Hightower, expert on international security and the Black Sea region and Ph.D. candidate in the John Glenn School of Public Affairs, will provide insights on the current unrest in Ukraine along with pictures from his recent trip.  The Mershon Center funded Hightower's trip to Ukraine to research his case study, "The Declarations of Independence: The Pridnestrovian Moldovian Republic," which was published by the Center for Complex Operations/Naval Postgraduate School. He also taught the case study at Ohio State in Public Policy 670 as basis for a filmed student debate. Read more


Mershon News
Mershon Center now has online link for development


Conflict, peace and resilience: These foundational themes are critical to the safety of populations worldwide. The Mershon Center for International Security Studies is dedicated to understanding how social, political, behavioral and scientific issues intersect and impact security on a global scale.


Give buttonBy elevating innovative research and fostering informed dialogue, Mershon Center faculty, staff and students advance interdisciplinary knowledge and collaboration on issues that influence the survival and prosperity of nations.


The Mershon Center for International Security Studies now has a link on the Ohio State Development site to give online for support of research, study abroad, events, and outreach. Your generous contribution the Mershon Center to enhance research, study abroad programs, scholarly events, and community outreach.


For more information about opportunities to support international security studies through the Mershon Center, please click on the red Give button on our newsletters and website, or visit the giving link at  

Ohio State recognized for excellence in international initiatives


Ohio State has been selected to receive NAFSA's Senator Paul Simon Award for Comprehensive Internationalization, which recognizes institutions for overall excellence in internationalization efforts as evidenced through best practices in engagement, programming, curriculum/faculty development and outreach. The Simon Award is universally considered the most prestigious award for comprehensive internationalization in the United States.

-- > Read more:

Byrd Polar event looks at water in Latin America

Thursday March 6, 2014
"Where's the Water? Monitoring, Measuring, and Modeling Water in Latin America"
5-8 p.m., Byrd Polar Research Center, 1090 Carmack Road


The Center for Latin American Studies, Byrd Polar Research Center, and Department of Geography are pleased to present our annual evening at Byrd Polar Research Center. This year the topic is "Where's the Water? Monitoring, Measuring, and Modeling Water in Latin America." 


Although past lectures have focused on climate change in the Andes, this year's event will take a slight detour to the Brazilian Amazon, to focus on questions of water and climate change. The event features two speakers, one movie trailer, archival displays, tours of Byrd Polar Research Center, food, and time to interact with researchers.


Water is essential to all life on Earth. With world population growing beyond 7 billion people, the demand for water resources will expand dramatically during a time when climate change is expected to alter the hydrologic cycle and impact the current distribution of water. What does this mean? This program will explore how water is monitored, measured, and modeled in Latin America and present our current understanding of changes anticipated over the next half century.


Douglas Alsdorf The lecture portion of the evening will feature talks by Douglas Alsdorf and Alvero Montenegro. Douglas Alsdorf and his colleagues study the Amazon and Congo River Basins. He and his team are focused on understanding the massive amounts of water that move through these rivers and their associated wetlands. They are addressing questions such as: How does water fill and decant these systems? What is the relationship of the water volumes to the global water and carbon cycles?  



Alvero Montenegro Alvero Montenegro's research interests encompass aspects of climate change and climate variability, particularly physical and biogeochemical processes, occurring at the scale of continents and the planet. He looks into these problems mainly using climate models, with a concentration on the role of the carbon cycle, while also employing observations. Some examples of scientific questions Montenegro has attempted to answer include: What will climate be like 5000 years from now if we burn all available fossil fuel reserves? Will large scale planting of trees worldwide cool or warm the climate? Could ocean acidification have caused the global extinction event 250 million years ago?


Space is limited, so please register here.  For more information, please visit


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