Second Tuesday Social Science Cafe Lecture Series Kicks Off

Dominic Tierney

Associate Professor of Political Science Dominic Tierney will give the first talk, "A World on Fire: Barack Obama and the Crisis of Global Order," on Tues., Sept. 9. 

The Second Tuesday Science Cafes have returned, this year with a focus on the social sciences. The 2014-15 series will be convened by Assistant Professor of Economics Erin Bronchetti and will focus on topics ranging from the Obama Doctrine to the economics of MOOCs. The series is sponsored by the Aydelotte Foundation for the Advancement of the Liberal Arts, whose mission is to inspire the quality and inventiveness of Swarthmore College’s liberal arts practices and to promote the understanding of the liberal arts in higher education, throughout society, and around the world. 

Taking place at noon on the second Tuesday of each month in Kohlberg's Scheuer Room, the series creates space for faculty and staff to come together for a light lunch and learning. Each event features a 35-minute presentation by a faculty member followed by a question and answer session.

The first presentation of the semester is Tues., Sept. 9, and features Associate Professor of Political Science Dominic Tierney, who will present "A World on Fire: Barack Obama and the Crisis of Global Order." Tierney notes that this year, a wave of violence has struck Ukraine, Gaza, Syria, Iraq, and elsewhere. Meanwhile, he says, critics on the right have assailed Barack Obama for an overly passive and cautious response. Recently, Hillary Clinton argued that the president's failure to arm Syrian rebels had contributed to the rise of ISIS in Syria and Iraq. "Is global order collapsing? What is the Obama Doctrine? How effectively is the president handling these multiple (and interconnected) international crises?” he asks.

Tierney is a senior fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute and a correspondent at The Atlantic. He is an expert in international politics with particular interest in U.S. foreign policy, public opinion and war, and broader international security issues. 

The remaining Cafes for the semester include: 

Oct 7: Barry Schwartz (Psychology): "Why?" Some Puzzles of Motivation 
Nov 11: Mark Kuperberg (Economics): Economics and the Future of Elite Colleges
Dec 9: Cheryl Jones-Walker (Educational Studies): Putting the Public Back into Public Education