Thursday, May 28, 2009

The World Trade Center of Alaska Presents Mark Begich Monday, June 1!
The World Trade Center of Alaska in Cooperation with the Alaska World Affairs Council
and the Anchorage Economic Development Corporation,
the Associated General Contractors of Alaska,

the Northern Forum,
the Resource Development Council,
and the Alaska State Chamber of Commerce
a Major Address by the Honorable Mark Begich

A Report from the Battlefield:
Progress in the Middle East and Washington

Just back from a week-long tour of Afghanistan and Pakistan, U.S. Senator Mark Begich will provide his perspective on progress in the world's most
dangerous region and give an update on current developments in Washington, D.C. As the first Alaskan on the Senate Armed Services
Committee since 1968, Senator Begich will report on his meetings with top military commanders and some of the thousands of Alaskan soldiers serving in the Middle East. In his first major speech in Alaska since his swearing-in, the Senator also will discuss congressional efforts to address the major issues facing the nation, including the economy, health care and international trade.

Monday, June 1, 2009
Hotel Captain Cook Ballroom
12:00 - 1:30 PM
(doors open at 11:30)

The cost is $45 per seat or $500 for a table of 10.

For more information or to make reservations,
please call the Alaska World Trade Center at 278-7233
or send an email to

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Susan Martin on Friday, May 29th

On Friday, May 29, the Alaska World Affairs Council will feature Susan Martin, of the Institute for the Study of International Migration at Georgetown University, speaking on the topic "US Immigration Policy: Challenges for the Future" as our last event of the 2008-2009 program year!

Susan Martin holds the Donald G. Herzberg Chair in International Migration and serves as the Director of the Institute for the Study of International Migration in the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. Dr. Martin is also Co-Director of the Certificate Program on Refugees and Humanitarian Emergencies. Previously Dr. Martin served as the Executive Director of the U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform, established by legislation to advise Congress and the President on U.S. immigration and refugee policy, and Director of Research and Programs at the Refugee Policy Group.

Her publications include Refugee Women, The Uprooted: Improving Humanitarian Responses to Forced Migration, Beyond the Gateway: Immigrants in a Changing America (ed.), and Managing Migration: The Promise of Cooperation. Dr. Martin earned her MA and Ph.D. in American Studies from the University of Pennsylvania and her BA in History from Douglass College, Rutgers University. She is the President of the International Association for the Study of Forced Migration and serves on the U.S. Comptroller General’s Advisory Board, the Academic Advisory Board of the International Organization for Migration, and the Board of the Advocacy Project.

Friday, May 15, 2009

On Friday, May 22nd, the Alaska World Affairs Council will feature Joe Montville,
Director of Toward the Abrahamic Family Reunion and Founder of Preventive Diplomacy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Joseph Montville is director of Toward the Abrahamic Family Reunion, the Esalen Institute project to promote Muslim-Christian-Jewish reconciliation. He is also Senior Adviser on Interfaith Relations at Washington National Cathedral, and has appointments at American and George Mason Universities. Montville founded the preventive diplomacy program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in 1994 and directed it until 2003. Before that he spent 23 years as a diplomat with posts in the Middle East and North Africa. He also worked in the State Department's Bureaus of Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs and Intelligence and Research, where he was chief of the Near East Division and director of the Office of Global Issues. Montville has held faculty appointments at the Harvard and University of Virginia Medical Schools. He defined the concept of “Track Two,” nonofficial diplomacy. Educated at Lehigh, Harvard, and Columbia Universities, Montville is the editor of Conflict and Peacemaking in Multiethnic Societies (Lexington Books, 1990) and editor (with Vamik Volkan and Demetrios Julius) of The Psychodynamics of International Relationships (Lexington Books, 1990 [vol. I], 1991 [vol. II]).

As always, you can find more information about our programs on our web site,

On Friday, May 15th, we hosted Dr. Paul Dunscomb, Associate Professor of East Asian History at UAA, who spoke on the topic "Whatever Happened To Japan: The Economic Superpower That Never Was"

Paul Dunscomb is Associate Professor of East Asian History at the University of Alaska Anchorage, and Director of UAA’s Confucius Institute. He has graduate degrees from the State University of New York at Albany and the University of Kansas. He is a specialist in modern Japanese history focusing on the domestic political aspects of the Japanese intervention and occupation of Siberia, 1918-1922. His book manuscript on this topic, the first ever complete narrative of Japan’s Siberian Intervention in English or Japanese, is currently under consideration by the University of Hawaii Press. His work has appeared in the Military Review, the Journal of Japanese Studies, and East-West Connections. He is the recipient of a Fulbright Research Fellowship for study in Japan and co-recipient of a Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad grant to lead a study tour of the Russian Far East. Prof. Dunscomb teaches East Asian Civilization, Modern China, Modern Japan as well as specialty courses in the evolution of the Samurai and the history of the Chinese Communist Party.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Dr. Julian Dierkes

On Friday, we will feature Dr. Julian Dierkes speaking on the topic "Fewer Children, More Customers? Changes in Japan's Supplementary Education System."

Julian Dierkes is an assistant professor and the Keidanren Chair in Japanese Research at the Institute of Asian Research of the University of British Columbia (UBC) where he teaches Asia Pacific Policy Studies At UBC, Julian serves as the Associate Director of the Centre for Japanese Research and as the Coordinator of the Program on Inner Asia.

His past and on-going research has examined portrayals of the nation in history education in postwar Japan and the Germanys. Julian's current research focuses on Japanese education, specifically on educational reform.

In this context he is investigating the impact of the for-profit nature of Japanese "shadow education" (juku) on the diversity of teaching and learning cultures within Japanese education.

In his research interests on Mongolia he focuses on the mining sector, especially on mining policy and on artisinal mining. Julian received his Ph.D. in sociology from Princeton University after previously studying at the Univ of California at Berkeley, Sophia University and the Free University of Berlin. He came to UBC in 2002 after holding the Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation Fellowship at the University of Cambridge.

The program is at noon on Friday, May 6. Doors open at 11.30. The cost for lunch is $20 for members, $25 for non-members, and $6 for coffee. Students may eat lunch for free thanks to a grant from BP. Please email to make reservations!