Cambridge, MA -- The Future of Diplomacy Project at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University has selected former U.K. Shadow Foreign Secretary Douglas Alexander as a senior fellow. Alexander will actively contribute to the work of the Project by facilitating seminars and master classes for HKS degree students, and by supporting the Project’s mission through research and analysis on global policy issues and transatlantic relations. He will be in residence at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs during the Project’s annual “Europe Week,” an event series dedicated to exploring critical issues for the transatlantic partnership and the European Union. The series runs from February 22 – 29, 2016.
Alexander joins a class of five other senior fellows already with the Project: Paula Dobriansky, former U.S. Under Secretary of State for Democracy and Global Affairs; Brian S. Mandell, senior lecturer in public policy and director of the HKS Negotiation Project; Cameron Munter, former U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan; David Ignatius, author and Washington Post columnist;and Farah Pandith, former State Department Special Representative to Muslim Communities.
“Douglas Alexander is one of the most formidable European politicians of his generation,” said R. Nicholas Burns, Roy and Barbara Goodman Family Professor of the Practice of Diplomacy and International Relations and faculty director of the Belfer Center’s Future of Diplomacy Project. “His appointment as senior fellow allows the Future of Diplomacy Project to expand its ongoing focus on the future of the Europe and Britain’s relationship to the E.U. In addition, Douglas will bring practical insights on innovation to tackle global challenges, such new models in development policy and poverty alleviation, into Harvard Kennedy School classrooms for discussion and debate with our faculty and students.”
“Douglas Alexander combines the rare qualities of being both a strategic thinker, as exemplified by his commitment to finding concrete, innovative solutions to ending poverty across the world, with that of a campaigner and politician. As such, his seminars and public appearances have been met with great interest from our students and faculty in the past. His appointment as Senior Fellow underscores our commitment to prepare a next generation of foreign policy leaders by having them learn from practitioners,” said Cathryn Cluver, executive director of the Future of Diplomacy Project.
“I am honored to be returning to the Belfer Center and delighted to be involved in the Future of Diplomacy Project,” Alexander said. “Given the challenges we face today - from conflict and climate change to extreme poverty and nuclear proliferation - the world needs effective leadership and diplomacy in the coming years. I look forward to working with Kennedy School degree students and colleagues at the Belfer Center to analyze and address these issues in the years ahead.”
The Right Honourable Douglas Alexander was Shadow Foreign Secretary for the Her Majesty’s Official Opposition in the U.K. from 2011-15. Currently, he serves as a Visiting Professor at King's College, London. In November 2015, Douglas was appointed senior advisor to Bono. In this capacity, he will be advising Bono on how best to secure investment to tackle global poverty, particularly in Africa. Alexander previously held numerous senior U.K. Ministerial positions (2001-10), including as Minister for Europe, as Secretary of State for International Development and U.K.'s Governor of the World Bank. In addition, Alexander coordinated the Labour Party’s 2001 general election campaign for then-Prime Minister Tony Blair.
Alexander was in residence with the Future of Diplomacy Project as Fisher Family Fellow in spring 2013 and autumn 2015. During this time, he conducted a number of seminars and public discussions on the future of transatlantic relations, the rise of populism in Europe, and Britain’s relation to the E.U. He also participated in several panel discussions on Europe Week and Strategic Health Diplomacy with foreign policy experts and officials at Harvard and beyond.