Top 10 Resources for the 2014-15 Carnegie Council Program Year

July 22, 2015

CREDIT: Edgaras Maselskis.

We hope you enjoy this list of audience favorites from our previous program year (July 2014–June 2015). The  impressive array of vital ethical issues covered here gives you an idea of the scope of Carnegie Council's work.

Topics include Russia's foreign policy, U.S. challenges both at home and abroad, digital piracy, online activism, and much more.   

In addition to, we hope you'll check out Carnegie Council's other websites: our journal, Ethics & International Affairs; our online magazine, Policy Innovations; and our social network, Global Ethics Network

1) Russia's Orthodox Soft Power
Nicolai N. Petro, University of Rhode Island
Russia's values are often overlooked, or treated simplistically as the antithesis of Western values. We should understand that the close relationship between the Orthodox Church and the state provides Russia's foreign policy with a definable moral framework, one that given its popularity, is likely to continue to shape policies well into the future.
(March 2015, article)

2) "Peace"
Cadel Watson, Castlemaine Secondary College, Australia
"The chaotic nature of recent years should serve as an example of the dangers of allowing cultural hatred to dominate the decision making of the planet. There are concrete and implementable ideas that nations and the international community can use to create peace throughout the world."
(Student/Teacher Essay Contest Winner, February 2015)

3) Is Downloading Really Stealing? The Ethics of Digital Piracy
Christian Barry, Australian National University
You wouldn't steal a car, you wouldn't steal a handbag, you wouldn't steal a television. But what about downloading pirated films? Is intellectual property infringement really morally equivalent with common theft? Read philosopher Christian Barry's take on this issue.
(April 2015, article)

4) Mary Dudziak on Civil Liberties During WWI and Beyond
Mary Dudziak, Emory University
Zach Dorfman, Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs
"Just as the nation is perpetually focused on security, we must also be perpetually focused on maintaining constitutional liberty."
(Living War Series, September 2014, article)

5) Examining the Potential for an American Truth and Reconciliation Commission
Bennett Collins, University of St Andrews
Alison M. S. Watson, University of St Andrews
The deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner catalyzed discussions nationwide over race relations in the United States. Surely it's time for some kind of Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). But how would it work? This essay examines other TRCs—including two in the U.S.—and proposes a solution tailored to fit America in all its diversity.
(Carnegie Ethics Online, February 2015, article)

6) The Kurdish Spring: A New Map of the Middle East
David L. Phillips, Columbia University
Joanne J. Myers, Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs
In this stirring, information-filled talk on the Kurdish people, David Phillips recounts centuries of abuse and repression against the world's "largest stateless people." But he also illuminates the vitality of today's Kurds, who are "pro-Western and secular" and have proven to be America's most capable regional partners in the fight against ISIS.
(Public Affairs Program, March 2015, transcript, audio, video, TV show)

7) Security Threats in Africa: A Critical Perspective
Claire Metelits, Davidson College
The U.S. is still seeing Africa from a Cold War perspective rooted in political realist thought, writes Africa security expert Metelits. But characterizing non-Western institutions as having a lack of governance and generalizing about political violence can lead to grave errors in assessing the threat environment.
(Carnegie Ethics Online, October 2014, article)

8) Hashtags and Human Rights: Activism in the Age of Twitter
Johanna Herman, University of East London
It's very exciting when an activist social media campaign goes viral. But what if all that energy is misdirected, or merely "slacktivism"? This essay examines five campaigns, including #bringbackourgirls and the Ice Bucket Challenge, to think about how to harness social networking to work towards real engagement and positive change.
(Carnegie Ethics Online, November 2014, article)

9) The United States, Russia, and Ukraine: Report from Moscow
Dmitri Trenin, Carnegie Moscow Center
David C. Speedie, Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs
Dmitri Trenin, director of Carnegie Endowment's Moscow Center, served in the Soviet and Russian military for two decades and understands both the Russian and U.S. points of view. He warns that U.S.-Russia relations are heading for a new version of the Cold War, and also discusses the Russian economy and its relations with China and other countries.
(U.S. Global Engagement, February 2015, transcript, audio, video)

10) From "Indispensable Nation" to "Realism-Based Restraint": Reconsidering U.S. Engagement with the World
Chas W. Freeman, Jr., Projects International, Inc.
David C. Speedie, Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs
Former ambassador Chas Freeman has had a wide breadth of diplomatic experience, from the Middle East to Africa, East Asia, and Europe. In this conversation he eloquently speaks his mind on the negative effects of sanctions, the folly of U.S. unqualified support for Israel, the U.S. strategy and diplomacy deficits, and much more.
(U.S. Global Engagement, November 2014, transcript, audio, video, TV show)