News + Media

person working on laptop with a globe on table

News@E40

April 26, 2020

CIS awards 17 summer study grants

Seventeen doctoral students in international affairs at MIT were awarded summer study grants. Each will receive up to $3,500. Sara Plana was awarded the first annual Guillemin prize.  “The awards were made to an outstanding cohort of MIT students from across the Institute. We're so pleased that the appeal of these grants has broadened and students are responding,” said John Tirman, CIS executive director and principal research scientist.

Long unemployment line

Analysis + Opinion

April 25, 2020

Europe has kept down pandemic unemployment--and the US hasn’t. Here’s why.

Over the last several decades, the United States has either shrunk its state capacity or failed to build it, especially around providing social benefits. In Europe, by contrast, governments have enough administrative capacity to deliver comprehensive help swiftly and directly.

Serbian soldiers stand guard at border crossing with Croatia

Analysis + Opinion

April 23, 2020

Do pandemics promote peace?

Covid-19 does nothing to mitigate such risks for world leaders—and a great deal to feed their reasonable pessimism about the likely outcome of even a conventional war, says Barry Posen in an essay in Foreign Affairs.

MIT Covid 19 Challenge logo

News@E40

April 23, 2020

MIT challenge: Africa takes on Covid19

MIT is hosting a series of open challenges to take action on the COVID-19 crisis. The MIT COVID-19 Challenge virtual event, Africa Takes on COVID-19, will begin May 1 and end May 3. This is part of a series of virtual hackathons with partners from across the MIT (including the MIT Africa Program) and healthcare ecosystems. 

People watch archival footage of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un at the Seoul Railway Station on April 21.

In the News

April 23, 2020

The rumors of Kim Jong Un’s “grave” illness, explained

Alex WardVox

Vipin Narang quoted: “What if he is technically ‘alive’ or there is litigation amongst potential successors as for whether he is alive or dead? Who can legally issue orders? What if there are contravening orders?” said Vipin Narang, an expert on North Korea’s nuclear program.

screen shot of CNN video with image of Kim Jong Un

In the News

April 21, 2020

Why the confusion about Kim Jong Un's health actually makes sense

Joshua BerlingerCNN

Vipin Narang quoted: "States want the public and others to know just enough. They want to be transparent about the capability, but kind of opaque about the procedures and the actual line of deployment to enhance deterrence," he said.

Military trucks on dusty road in the Middle East

Analysis + Opinion

April 21, 2020

The Middle East in an era of great power competition

Middle East Institute

How does or should the Middle East fit in America’s new grand strategy? Does the great power competition require a new approach toward the Middle East? Which approach best serves Washington’s new global plans? To answer these questions and more, the Middle East Institute (MEI) hosted a conversation with Barry Posen (MIT) and Stephen Walt (Harvard). Find the video and transcript here.

 

Image of smartphone and globe indicating tracking Covid-19

Analysis + Opinion

April 15, 2020

How digital contact tracing slowed Covid-19 in East Asia

For Western democracies the time has come to either rethink our values around the tradeoff between personal privacy and public safety in a pandemic or to accelerate technology innovation and policy development that can preserve both. 

Participants at the conference

Analysis + Opinion

April 15, 2020

Insights from the After iGEM biosecurity policy conference

Ronit Langer

The parallels between the findings of the IGEM biosecurity policy conference last November and the actions of scientists and policy makers across the world in responding to the Covid-19 pandemic today are striking: Scope, containment, and communication.

Joel Brenner

Analysis + Opinion

April 8, 2020

The inspector general’s badge of honor

The president’s power to remove Senate confirmed officials is not stated in the constitution. That power is grounded in the president’s constitutional duty to “take care that the laws be faithfully executed.” In this case, ironically, Trump removed Atkinson for having faithfully executed the law, explains Joel Brenner in a recent opinion piece. 

Pages