PLYMOUTH — Dr. Richard Solomon, former president of the U.S. Institute of Peace, will speak at Plymouth State University Friday, May 17, at 11 a.m.
Solomon's presentation, "Managing International Conflict in a Transformed World: The Work of the U.S. Institute of Peace," will explore the new challenges in international affairs, and describe the work of USIP in helping our national institutions of diplomacy and defense adapt to this new agenda. Solomon is considered one of the major figures in international relations over the past several decades; he retired last year after 19 years at USIP where he oversaw its growth into a center of international conflict management.
In the two decades since the end of the Cold War, the world of challenges and opportunities facing America abroad has fundamentally changed. Great power confrontations have receded, but have given way to regions of political chaos and the threat of terrorism. Globalized economic relations are raising living standards, but also subjecting developed and developing countries to financial instability, intense market competition and job insecurity. Nuclear weapons are proliferating, while ethnic and religious conflicts are creating political instability. And new, non-military threats to security are emerging: electronic (cyber) vulnerabilities, humanitarian crises, health pandemics, food insecurity.
Our Cold War-era institutions of diplomacy and defense are slowly adapting to the challenges of this new era. One promising new institution facilitating this adaptation is the United States Institute of Peace (USIP). Created by Congress in 1984, the Institute has become a world-recognized center of innovation in international conflict management. Now housed in a dramatic permanent headquarters on the National Mall in Washington, USIP trains conflict mangers and collaborates with America's diplomats and military to prevent conflicts from turning violent and stabilizing countries torn apart by war and internal strife.
Dr. Solomon is the Commencement speaker for Plymouth State University's 142nd Commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 18.