Campus & Community

Former fellow establishes program at Weatherhead

2 min read

The Weatherhead Center for International Affairs has established a new Program on Transatlantic Relations, thanks to a donation by Pierre Keller of Geneva. Keller was a fellow in 1979–80 at the then–Center for International Affairs, as part of a program that welcomes senior-level diplomats, politicians, military officers, and private-sector professionals to the University for a year of scholarly activity and reflection.

Keller’s donation consists of an endowment for a visiting professorship to be taken up by a scholar or public servant who has distinguished him or herself through academic research, teaching, or public service in the field of trans-Atlantic relations. Incumbents of the professorship will use their appointments to carry out research with special emphasis on issues relevant to the political future of U.S.-European affairs and to teach a course in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences or the Harvard Kennedy School (HKS). Keller has also committed operational funds for five years to establish and help sustain the program.

Another donation, by the Janssen family of Brussels, will complement Keller’s commitment by supporting both an annual Paul Henri Spaak Lecture by a prominent European and the presence of occasional speakers for the Weatherhead Center’s Seminar on Transatlantic Relations, as well as for speakers from the European Union in joint activities with the Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies and HKS.

“At a time when attention shifts more and more to Asia, the Middle East, and Africa, as well toward global issues,” said Beth A. Simmons, Clarence Dillon Professor of International Affairs and director of the Weatherhead Center, “the generous gifts of Pierre Keller and the Janssen family enable us to strengthen research and teaching on trans-Atlantic and European affairs in cooperation with important sister institutions at Harvard.”

The Weatherhead Center has appointed Karl Kaiser, a Ralph I. Straus Fellow at the center and an adjunct professor of public policy at HKS, as the program’s founding director. An advisory committee chaired by Buttenwieser University Professor Stanley Hoffman is also comprised of the Weatherhead Center’s Steven Bloomfield, Richard Cooper, Karl Kaiser, and Beth Simmons; the Kennedy School’s Ashton Carter and Joseph Nye Jr.; and the Center for European Studies’ Patricia Craig, Peter Hall, and Charles Maier. It thus reflects the highly cooperative scope of this effort.

The first Pierre Keller Visiting Professor is likely to be appointed for spring 2009.