Huber presents final Povolny lecture

Emily Passey

Next week marks the last lecture of this year’s Povolny Lecture series. The Mojmir Povolny Lectureship in International Studies was started 15 years ago, shortly after Professor Povolny retired, by several students who wanted to recognize his accomplishments and bring international relations experts to Lawrence.
Povolny started teaching at Lawrence in 1958. After receiving a degree from the Masaryk University School of Law in Brno and a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago, Povolny went on to become an instrumental part of the anti-communist movement in Czechoslovakia, receiving the highest civilian honor on the day of Czech independence. He was also involved in the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and worked with the American Friends Service Committee.
At Lawrence, Povolny was a leader in the formation of Lawrence as a liberal arts institution, and helped redefine “The Lawrence Difference” while heading what was known as the “Povolny Committee.” He has lived a life devoted to education, not only in a university setting, but in the world at large. The lecture series which takes his name is designed to honor and uphold the standards he has set.
Each year, the Lawrence faculty member in charge of the lecture series decides on a theme of contemporary interest and searches for experts in the field. These experts come from all over the country, and sometimes the world, and at least one per series is a Lawrence alum. Each lecturer also usually meets with a student group over a meal to further discuss the topic of their lecture, or other topics of student interest, in a more intimate setting
This year’s series is titled “U.S. and European Security: Challenges and Choices” and features four experts on the subject, who will speak next Monday, May 9. Each speaker approaches the issue from a different angle, with emphasis ranging from French and U.S. relations to the implications of American youth.
The first lecturer in the 2005 series was Esther Brimmer, the deputy director and director of research at Johns Hopkins University’s Center for International Relations. Brimmer specializes in transatlantic politics and security and her lecture was titled “New Dimension in the U.S./European Security Relations.”
The next speaker, David Swartz is a former ambassador to Belarus and was a Scarff memorial professor at Lawrence. Swartz was the chief of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s mission to Moldova and spoke especially about this organization in his lecture entitled, “Unfinished Business in Eastern Europe: The Role of The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.” While here, Swartz also met with many of Lawrence students from Eastern Europe.
David King graduated from Lawrence in 1985 and is now the associate director of the Institute of Politics and a lecturer in public policy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard. His lecture, titled “The Activism and Optimism of American Youth: Implications for U.S. Foreign Policy,” focused primarily on the American aspect of security relations, specifically the upcoming generation of Americans.
On Monday, May 9, John Huber, professor of political science and director of graduate studies at Columbia University, will present his lecture, “U.S. and French Perspectives on Foreign Policy Issues,” the last of the series.
Huber, who graduated from Lawrence in 1984, will focus on key aspects of the new European Union constitution and explain why it appears that France will reject it. The lecture will also look at possible ramifications of the constitution for the United States.
Huber has contributed to and written several acclaimed works including “Deliberate Discretion? The Institutional Foundations of Bureaucratic Autonomy,” which compares methods of delegation in advanced democracies, and “Rationalizing Parliament: Legislative Institutions and Party Politics in France,” which received an honorable mention for the Gregory Luebbert Book Award, presented annually by the American Political Science Association for the best book in the field of comparative politics.
Huber has earned a number of other awards and honors for his writing, including the APSA’s Heinz Eulau Award and Georges Lavau Prize, specifically for his work on French politics.
Huber will present “U.S. and European Security: Challenges and Choices” at 7 p.m. Monday in Science Hall, Room 102.