Stewart M. Patrick

The Internationalist

Patrick assesses the future of world order, state sovereignty, and multilateral cooperation.

The Good, the Bad, and the Sad of the High-Level Report on UN Peace Operations

by Guest Blogger for Stewart M. Patrick Tuesday, July 28, 2015
Helmets belonging to soldiers of the Nigerian army are seen as part of preparations for their deployment to Mali. Helmets belonging to soldiers of the Nigerian army are seen as part of preparations for their deployment to Mali (Afolabi Sotunde/Reuters).

The following is a guest post by Charles T. Call, associate professor in American University’s School of International Service and author of Why Peace Fails: The Causes and Prevention of Civil War Recurrence (Georgetown University Press, 2012). Read more »

The Iran Deal and the Future of Nuclear Order

by Guest Blogger for Stewart M. Patrick Thursday, July 23, 2015
The flag of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) flies in front of its headquarters in Vienna, Austria, on May 28, 2015. The flag of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) flies in front of its headquarters in Vienna, Austria, on May 28, 2015 (Heinz-Peter Bader/Reuters).

The following is a guest post by my colleague Adam Mount, a Stanton Nuclear Security Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations.

Though the atomic bomb was first developed in 1945, it was not until 1957 that the U.S. intelligence community conducted its first forecast of how nuclear weapons might spread around the world. That first estimate concluded that some ten countries had the capability to build the bomb in the next decade. Six years later, President John F. Kennedy warned that the 1970s could see a world in which twenty-five countries possessed nuclear weapons. This counterfactual—what would the world look like without the nonproliferation regime?—is one of the most important and vexing questions in international politics. Read more »

Turning the Tide on Global Ocean Acidification

by Stewart M. Patrick Tuesday, July 21, 2015
A scuba diver swims near a school of swirling jacks off the coast of Bali, Indonesia, in May 2011. A scuba diver swims near a school of swirling jacks off the coast of Bali, Indonesia, in May 2011 (David Loh/Reuters).

Last night I had the honor to participate in a great New York event—the announcement of the winners of the Wendy Schmidt Ocean Health XPrize, presented by Foreign Affairs LIVE. Two years ago, the XPrize Foundation announced that they would offer $2 million to any private team that could do something many had considered impossible: create a device to reliably measure the acidity of the deep ocean, while surviving pressures equivalent to hundreds of atmospheres. The big winner was Sunburst Sensors, a tiny company  based in Missoula, Montana, which came in first place for both accuracy and affordability. Read more »

Multilateralism à la Carte: The New World of Global Governance

by Stewart M. Patrick Tuesday, July 14, 2015
A view of the United Nations headquarters in New York. A view of the United Nations headquarters in New York (Eric Thayer/Reuters).

Back in 2001, State Department policy planning director Richard N. Haass coined a catchy new foreign policy phrase: “multilateralism à la carte.” Asked by the New York Times about why the administration of George W. Bush rejected high-profile international treaties like the International Criminal Court, he denied that the White House was “unilateralist”—it was just “choosy.” Rather than sign up to every new commitment, the United States would pick and choose based on which treaty or organization brought more bang for the buck and limited constraints on U.S. freedom of action. Read more »

The BRICS: Three Things to Know

by Stewart M. Patrick Wednesday, July 8, 2015
Russian President Vladimir Putin gestures during a meeting ahead of the BRICS summit in Ufa, Russia, on July 8, 2015. Russian President Vladimir Putin gestures during a meeting ahead of the BRICS summit in Ufa, Russia, on July 8, 2015 (Sergei Ilnitsky/Reuters).

This week, the leaders of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa will gather in the Russian city of Ufa for the seventh annual summit of the BRICS. The BRICS have come a long way since 2001, when Goldman Sachs analyst Jim O’Neill coined the term “BRIC” to describe the four most dynamic emerging economies of the new century. With South Africa’s addition in 2011, the BRICS became a symbol of the shifting global political landscape—one in which the BRICS seek power and influence commensurate with their growing economic weight. Read more »

South Korea: Middle Power Ambitions and Geopolitical Constraints

by Guest Blogger for Stewart M. Patrick Tuesday, June 30, 2015
South Korean President Park Geun-hye shakes hands with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Beijing, China, on November 10, 2014. South Korean President Park Geun-hye shakes hands with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Beijing, China, on November 10, 2014 (Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters).

The following is a guest post by Andrew O’Neil, professor of political science and head of the School of Government and International Relations at Griffith University, Australia. Read more »

International Cooperation: Still Alive and Kicking

by Stewart M. Patrick Thursday, June 25, 2015
U.S. President Barack Obama meets with the leaders of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) countries in Beijing, China, on November 10, 2014. U.S. President Barack Obama meets with the leaders of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) countries in Beijing, China, on November 10, 2014 (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters).

The following is a guest post by Naomi Egelresearch associate in the International Institutions and Global Governance program.

Earlier this month, the International Institutions and Global Governance program cohosted the Princeton Workshop on Global Governance, which brought together scholars and practitioners to assess geopolitics and global cooperation. The main takeaway: international cooperation may be messy and it may be taking new forms, but it’s not going anywhere. Read more »

The Vatican Takes on Climate Change: Making Sense of the Pope’s Encyclical

by Stewart M. Patrick Thursday, June 18, 2015
Pope Francis waves to a crowd on St. Peter's Square in Vatican City on June 13, 2015. Pope Francis waves to a crowd on St. Peter's Square in Vatican City on June 13, 2015 (Giampiero Sposito/Reuters).

Pope Francis’s new encyclical on the environment, “Laudato Si” (“Praise Be to You”), is a profoundly important document. It has the potential to shake up the stalled climate change debate in the United States, not least by broadening the definition of what it means to be a “conservative.” Read more »

The G7 Summit: An Exclusive Club—But a Global Role

by Stewart M. Patrick Wednesday, June 3, 2015
A view of the Bavarian retreat of Schloss Elmau, where leaders of the Group of Seven (G7) countries will gather for their annual summit on June 7–8, 2015. A view of the Bavarian retreat of Schloss Elmau, where leaders of the Group of Seven (G7) countries will gather for their annual summit on June 7–8, 2015 (Michaela Rehle/Reuters).

When President Obama and his fellow Group of Seven (G7) leaders convene this weekend at the Bavarian retreat of Schloss Elmau, they will face two tasks. The most obvious is to formulate common positions on a global agenda so sweeping that it will strain even the lengthiest communiqué. Their more subtle challenge is to signal that their advanced market democracies remain not only an anchor of order in a turbulent world but also a potential engine to drive global governance reform. Read more »

The Trans-Pacific Partnership: Impact on Global Health

by Guest Blogger for Stewart M. Patrick Tuesday, May 26, 2015
An aerial banner reading "Doctors to Obama: Keep #TPP Away from Our Medicines!" flies above New York in January 2015. The banner was sponsored by the international medical humanitarian organization Médecins Sans Frontières, or Doctors Without Borders, which has argued that the Trans-Pacific Partnership could restrict access to affordable generic medicines in developing countries. An aerial banner reading "Doctors to Obama: Keep #TPP Away from Our Medicines!" flies above New York in January 2015. The demonstration was sponsored by the international medical humanitarian organization Médecins Sans Frontières, or Doctors Without Borders, which has argued that the Trans-Pacific Partnership could restrict access to affordable generic medicines in developing countries (Shannon Stapleton/Reuters).

The following is a guest post by my colleague Yanzhong Huang, senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations. Read more »