Mansfield Leadership Forum

David Steinberg and Abraham Kim during an Asian Leadership Forum lectureEthical public affairs and U.S.-Asian relations will play a major role in the future of the United States and the world. The Mansfield Leadership Forum invites national experts to speak to the Missoula community and to open a dialogue on questions critical to Missoula, Montana and the United States. All Leadership Forum lectures are free and open to the public.

Spring 2018

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Creating, Preserving, and Defending the Paris Agreement on Climate Change

Date and Time: Thursday, April 12 at 7 PM
Location: Gallagher Business Building room 123, UM

Speaker: Andrew Light, former Senior Adviser and India Counselor to the U.S. Special Envoy on Climate Change, and Staff Climate Adviser to Secretary of State John Kerry

In December 2015 over 190 countries met in Paris for the 21st meeting of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change where they succeeded in creating a new and ambitious international climate agreement. Many have heralded the outcome as a groundbreaking achievement for international diplomacy and global climate action. Others have argued that the climate commitments in it are ultimately too weak to achieve the agreements’ lofty aspirations. The Paris Agreement is now undergoing an unexpectedly early stress test with the announcement of the intended withdraw of the United States. Dr. Andrew Light will explore the significance of the agreement and why it is worth fighting for by reviewing the recent history of the UN climate negotiations and how this outcome evolved from earlier failed attempts in this process, finally overcoming the immense hurdle of justly assigning responsibility for hitting global emission reduction targets. He will also look at what the future holds for global climate cooperation, including indications of how different communities are prepared to defend the agreement and continue coordinated action on this increasingly urgent problem.

This event is co-sponsored by The Mansfield Ethics and Public Affairs Program, The Project on American Democracy and Citizenship, and UM Climate Change Studies Program.

Environmental Philosophy: 30 years of Big Changes

Date and Time: Friday, April 13th from 12PM to 1PM
Location: Davidson Honors College Lounge, UM

Andrew Light, University Professor, George Mason University & Senior Fellow, World Resources Institute, Christopher Preston, Professor of Philosophy , UM, Philosophy, Albert Borgmann, Regents Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, UM

Join leading environmental philosophers Andrew Light and Christopher Preston, along with Albert Borgmann, for an armchair discussion on the past and future environmental philosophy. The discussion will examine the big themes in environmental philosophy over the last three decades and how those theme might change in the future. In what ways have environmental philosophy changed (or failed to change) policy.

About Andrew Light

Andrew LightAndrew Light is University Professor of Philosophy, Public Policy, and Atmospheric Sciences at George Mason University, and Distinguished Senior Fellow in the Climate Program at the World Resources Institute, in Washington, D.C. From 2013-2016 he served in the Obama administration as Senior Adviser and India Counselor to the U.S. Special Envoy on Climate Change, and Staff Climate Adviser to Secretary of State John Kerry in the Office of Policy Planning in the U.S. Department of State. In this capacity he served on the senior strategy team for the UN climate negotiations, Director of the Interagency Climate Change Working Group for negotiation of the Sustainable Development Goals, and Director of the U.S.-India Joint Working Group for Combating Climate Change, among other duties. In recognition of this work, Andrew was awarded the inaugural Public Philosophy Award, from the International Society for Environmental Ethics in June 2017, which has been renamed the “Andrew Light Award,” the inagural Alain Locke Award for Public Philosophy, from the Society for the Advancement of American Philosophy in March 2016, and a Superior Honor Award, from the U.S. Department of State in July 2016, for his work on creating and negotiating the Paris Agreement on climate change. Since leaving government service, he has been a frequent commentator on U.S. and international climate policy in dozens of media outlets, including the New York Times, Politico, Vox, Axios, The Globe and Mail, The Observer, The Guardian, Mother Jones, NPR, Marketplace, CNN, CBS, ABC, and Fox Business. In his academic career, Andrew is the author of over 100 articles and book chapters, primarily on the normative dimensions of climate change, restoration ecology, and urban sustainability, and has authored, co-authored, and edited 19 books, including Environmental Values (2008), Moral and Political Reasoning in Environmental Practice (2003), Environmental Pragmatism (1996), and the forthcoming Ethics in the Anthropocene.

Fall 2017

The flags of North Korea, South Korea, and the United States overlaid on a nuclear symbolTensions on the Korean Peninsula:

Geopolitics, Instability, and the Nuclear Weapons Crisis

Monday, October 9, 2017 at 7 pm

University Center Theater, University of Montana


Greg Scarlatoiu, Executive Director of the Committee for Human Rights in North Korea
Scott Snyder, Senior Fellow for Korea studies at the Council on Foreign Relations

Special Guest: North Korean Defector Y. Kang

Under the leadership of Kim Jong Un and despite multiple sanctions from the United Nations, North Korea has continued to develop its capacity to launch an intercontinental missile capable of carrying a nuclear warhead. This year alone North Korea has already conducted 15 ballistic missile tests, and in his reign Kim Jong Un has already overseen more missile tests than his father and grandfather combined. As South Korea recovers from its own political turmoil that saw the impeachment of former president Park Geun-Hye and the United States’ president takes a hard line against North Korea on the world stage, serious questions arise about the future of stability and security on the Korean Peninsula, how it will affect US allies like Japan and South Korea, and how it will affect the United States itself. 

RSVPs have closed for this event, but seating is still available on a first-come, first-served basis for those who have not RSVP'd.

Past Asian Leadership Forum Events

North Korea and Northeast Asia: Is Peace Possible?
U.S. Ambassador Sung Kim and Dr. Stephen Noerper of the Korea Society

The Years of Living Dangerously: A Forgotten Genocide
Speaker: Owen Sirrs, Adjunct Professor at the University of Montana

Documentary: The Look of Silence
Director: Josh Oppenheimer

CHINA Town Hall 2015
Speakers: Robert Rubin, Frank Jannuzi, Sheldon Day and Daniel Rosen

Film: Ode to My Father
Speakers: Dr. Sung-Yong Lee, Professor at Tufts University and Dr. James Person of the Woodrow Wilson International Center of Scholars

Global Pandemics and Bioterrorism
Speakers: David Hamon of Banyan Analytics and Alex Philp of GCS

2014 CHINA Town Hall
Speakers: Former President Jimmy Carter (webcast) and Robert A. Kapp

Memories of the Korean War: Stories and Artifacts
Speaker: Dr. Stephen Noerper, Senior Vice President, The Korea Society


CHINA Town Hall 2016

Korea and Northeast Asia: Challenges and Opportunities
Speakers: Ambassador Thomas Hubbard, Ambassador Mark Minton, Dr. Stephen Noerper, and Dr. Abraham Kim
Documentary: The Land of Many Palaces

The Life and Legacy of Mike Mansfield
Speakers: Ambassador Thomas Hubbard, Ambassador Mark Minton, Congressman Pat Williams, and Dr. Paul Lauren

U.S. Public Diplomacy and Leadership in East Asia
Speaker: Kathleen Stephens, the first U.S. woman Ambassador to South Korea

Burma: Reforms and Opportunities for the Future in Southeast Asia
Speaker: David Steinberg, Distinguished Professor of Asian Studies at Georgetown University

Asia and Cyber Security
Speaker: David Hamon, Director of Banyan Analytics and former Senior Official with the Defense Threat Reduction Agency