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NEWPORT, R.I. – Naval War College (NWC) faculty members are deeply involved in bringing nearly 200 leading scholars around the world to Providence, Rhode Island, to participate in an annual conference that focuses on security studies, October 14-16.
 
 
NWC’s Professor Peter Dombrowski, Strategic Research Department Chair, is the conference organizer, and Professor Joshua Rovner from NWC’s Strategy and Policy Department is the program chair.
 
This year’s conference gives participants the opportunity to assess the post-9/11 era and examine whether issues, such as climate change and humanitarian disaster assistance, have replaced terrorism as the focus of scholarly attention.   
 
“There is something peculiar about international politics today,” explained Rovner. “The United States enjoys historically unprecedented advantages in economic and military power, but American officials seem uneasy.  In addition to expressing concern over rising great powers, they have begun to treat old issues like immigration and environmental degradation as serious security problems.” 
 
Participants will consider whether these other issues suggest a return to debates that dominated the 1990s or whether ongoing conflicts with emerging nuclear powers, along with the rise of countries like Brazil, Russia, India, and China, foreshadow a return to the traditional business of great power politics.
 
“This is a great opportunity for Naval War College faculty to interact with our colleagues from civilian academia,” said Rovner. “I think we’ve earned our reputation as a hub of teaching and research on strategic studies, but we should always be wary of becoming overconfident or getting stuck in old habits of mind.”
 
This conference is also part of the college’s outreach efforts.
 
“The best cure for intellectual inertia is participation in debates with scholars from different disciplines and professional backgrounds, and this conference brings together a terrific group of political scientists, historians, and economists who possess an extraordinary range of knowledge and shared interest in international security.” 
 
Further information about the conference is available at the International Security Studies Section website.
 
By Cmdr. Carla McCarthy, NWC Public Affairs

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