Mershon Center for International Security Studies
October 2, 2017
In This Issue
Hollie Nyseth Brehm
Assistant Professor of Sociology

Hollie Nyseth Brehm received the Rada Distinguished Alumnus Award from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. The Rada Award recognizes alumni who have graduated within the last 20 years, achieved professional distinction and taken part in humanitarian activities.
In the Media
Mitch Lerner
Associate Professor of History
"Mitchell B. Lerner"
Korea and the World
September 18, 2017
About Mershon Memo
Mershon Memo is a weekly e-mail newsletter distributed by the Mershon Center for International Security Studies, part of the College of Arts and Sciences at The Ohio State University.
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Mershon Events
Monday, October 2, 2017

Jennifer Lerner
4 p.m., 035 Psychology Building, 1835 Neil Ave.

Jennifer Lerner Jennifer Lerner is professor of public policy and management at Harvard Kennedy School of Government and co-founder of the Harvard Decision Science Laboratory. Her research examines human judgment and decision making. Together with colleagues, she has developed a theoretical framework that successfully predicts the effects of specific emotions on judgment and choice outcomes. At this event, Lerner will present a series of studies from her lab revealing that incidental anger systematically biases judgment and decision making by heightening perceptions of controllability and certainty, decreasing perceptions of risk, and increasing risk taking. Read more and register at
Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Sean Kay
3:30 p.m., 120 Mershon Center, 1501 Neil Ave.

Sean Kay Sean Kay is Robson Professor of Politics and Government at Ohio Wesleyan University. He is also an associate at the Mershon Center. Kay has published widely on international security issues including  NATO and the Future of European Security (1998); Global Security in the Twenty First Century: The Quest for Power and the Search for Peace (3rd edition, 2015); America's Search for Security: The Triumph of Idealism and the Return of Realism (2015); and Rockin' the Free World! How the Rock and Roll Revolution Changed America and the World (2017). At this event, Kay will present his new book which uses interviews with more than 60 American and international rock and roll performers, songwriters, producers, managers, and non-profit activists to show how rock and roll has been a platform of power advancing progress. Live music included! Read more and register at
Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Michael Fischerkeller
3:30 p.m., 120 Mershon Center, 1501 Neil Ave.

Michael Fischerkeller Michael Fischerkeller is a research staff member at the Institute for Defense Analyses, where he supports U.S. regional and functional and multinational force commanders, including deployments to U.S. Pacific Command, Iraq and Afghanistan. He earned a Ph.D. in international relations and research methods from Ohio State and was a post-doctoral fellow at the Mershon Center. This presentation will offer the bases of an argument that, within cyberspace, the protection or advancement of national interests cannot rest on deterrence as the central strategy but can be realized through a strategy that captures and takes advantage of unique characteristics of the domain - a strategy of persistence. Read more and register at
Thursday, October 19, 2017

James Fearon
3:30 p.m., 120 Mershon Center, 1501 Neil Ave.

James Fearon James D. Fearon is Theodore and Frances Geballe Professor in the School of Humanities and Sciences and professor of political science at Stanford University. His research focuses on political violence - interstate, civil, and ethnic conflict in particular. In addition he has worked on aspects of democratic theory and the impact of democracy on foreign policy. Fearon was elected member of the National Academy of Sciences in 2012 and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2002. In this presentation, Fearon will argue that arms are useful not only for deterrence or taking territory, but also because they influence the resolution of a set of disputed issues. It is shown that states can cooperate on the issues by limiting military competition, but only as far as a "war constraint" allows. Read more and register at
Mershon News
National security simulation prepares next generation

Dakota Rudesill
Dakota Rudesill
Sitting around a large Mahogany block "O" shaped table, a handful of people type furiously away at their computers. Some are conversing in small groups, others flip quickly between a series of windows on their laptops before uploading a breaking news announcement that appears behind them on a large screen.

At the front of this ad hoc control room, Dakota Rudesill, professor at The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, stands at a small podium with his laptop in front of him. After a quick glance down at his notes, he turns his gaze to the rest of the room and casually asks the group, "Who wants to play the president of Russia?"

While the question may seem slightly odd, it fits neatly within the role playing capacity of The Ohio State University National Security Simulation, a two-day intensive exercise that gives students and faculty from Ohio State's Moritz College of Law, John Glenn College of Public Affairs, Mershon Center for International Security Studies, and School of Communication, along with other graduate, military, and international studies students, the opportunity to experience what working in the national security field is like in the real world.

For some, including the students in Rudesill's National Security Law and Process course, the simulation serves as the final exam, testing students on everything they've learned that semester and throughout law school. For others, it simply offers the chance to gain real world experience in the relative safety of an academic setting.

Simulation Peter Mansoor
Mershon affiliate Peter Mansoor played the role of the president in The Ohio State University National Security Simulation
"Students learn best when they learn experientially, when they need to step into the shoes of people doing the jobs that they've been learning about in the classroom," said Rudesill, who created the simulation. "We are providing an opportunity for them to do that and to do so working in concert with senior practitioners."

Close to 100 students and nearly 50 professors and practitioners, including high-ranking retired members of the military, federal and state legislators, federal judges, policy of officials, intelligence analysts, attorneys, reporters, alumni, and other Ohio State staff, immersed themselves for two days in an alternative world where their decisions determine the fate of the United States of America.

"I wish all young professionals before they go into government could have the benefit of this remarkable simulation Ohio State has built," said former U.S. Sen. Kent Conrad after witnessing the simulation firsthand while playing the role of U.S. Senate majority leader in this year's exercise. "You will not find a more intensive or realistic experience, short of doing the real thing."

Read the rest of this story and see photos at
Other Events
Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Sir Alan Duncan
4 p.m., 107 Hamilton Hall, 1645 Neil Ave.
Sponsored by Alexander Hamilton Society-OSU Chapter

Sir Alan Duncan The Alexander Hamilton Society is very excited to host Sir Alan Duncan, the United Kingdom Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (Deputy Foreign Minister). Selected topics of discussion include the U.K.-U.S. special relationship and its direction; future of affairs with the EU after Brexit; future of NATO; war on terror; and importance of youth involvement in politics. Mershon affiliate Peter Mansoor, Gen. Raymond E. Mason Chair in Military History, will moderate and lead a student question and answer session following Sir Duncan's discussion. Read more
Thursday, October 5, 2017

Christopher Justice
3:30 p.m., 1080 Derby Hall, 154 N. Oval Mall
Sponsored by Department of Geography

Christopher JusticeThe Department of Geography Speaker Series presents the Robinson Colloquium given by Chris Justice, professor and chair of geographical sciences at the University of Maryland, who will speak on "Global Agricultural Monitoring: Detecting the Impact of Extreme Climate Events." Providing timely and transparent information on shortfalls in global crop production is an important step to mitigating price volatility and responding to food shortages. Researchers at the University of Maryland's Department of Geographical Sciences Center for Global Agricultural Monitoring Research have developed a satellite-based global agricultural monitoring system in support of global agricultural markets and food security. Read more
Friday, October 6, 2017

Vasileios Syros
3 p.m., 168 Dulles Hall, 230 Annie and John Glenn Ave.
Sponsored by Center for Historical Research

Vasileios Syros Vasileios Syros, research fellow at the National Academy of Finland and a fellow at the Italian Academy for Advanced Studies in America at Columbia University, will present "The Reason-of-State Tradition and Early Modern Political Discourse on Revolution" as part of the Center for Historical Research's ongoing two-year series "You Say You Want a Revolution? Revolutions in Comparative Perspective." Syros is a scholar of political thought and the circulation of ideas in the pre-modern Mediterranean, including Jewish and Islamic reactions to scientific and political change in Greece and Italy. Read more
Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Lori Esposito Murray
11:30 a.m., Boat House at Confluence Park, 679 W. Spring St.
Sponsored by Columbus Council on World Affairs

Lori Esposito MurrayIn June 2017, Secretary of Defense Mattis in testimony before the House Armed Services Committee identified North Korea aggressively improving its nuclear and missile capabilities as one of the five top threats to peace and security and the international order. What do we know about North Korea's nuclear capabilities and intentions? Are we on the brink of war on the Korean peninsula? What are the key factors influencing the United States' relationship with Russia and China right now? Will the nuclear agreement with Iran hold? What are the implications for the region and for the global community? Lori Esposito Murray, adjunct senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, will help us put these critical topics into context. Read more and register
Other News
Environmental Film Series begins October 16

Students from Ohio State and members of the community will screen and discuss six environmental films with university and local experts in October and November.

The series is designed to raise awareness of climate change and its economic, health, political and environmental impacts.  It will also highlight how people's use of land and water can still support diverse wildlife and protect the environment.

The films will screen at 7 p.m. on Monday evenings from October 16 through November 20 in Room 130, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and Chemistry (CBEC) Building, 151 W. Woodruff Ave. in Columbus. Admission is free and open to the public.

A discussion session with the experts from Ohio State and the community will immediately follow. Free pizzas and beverages will be available at 6:45 p.m. at each event. Ohio State students are eligible to attend the screenings as an independent credit course.

The schedule of films is:  
The series is sponsored by the Environmental Professionals Network at the School of Environment and Natural Resources and Office of Energy and the Environment. 

For more information, contact David Hanselmann, EPN coordinator, at or 614-247-1908. Read more
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