Lectures & Literary past

Old Friends, New Allies – What to Expect from Finland as a NATO Member Dr. Mika Aaltola In Conversation With Richard Gowan

Wed—5-10-2023
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Mika Aaltola & Richard Gowan

WED—May 10—1 PM, free

After the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, popular support for NATO membership in Finland quickly rose to a historically high level. One year, one month and 11 days after the Russian aggression began, Finland officially became a member of NATO. Although not a complete transformation, the NATO membership marks a historical change in the country’s security and defense policy. What changes with the NATO membership? What can the Alliance expect from Finland as a NATO member, and what are the ramifications of the Finnish membership to the changing geopolitics of the north?

Dr. Mika Aaltola, the Director of the Finnish Institute of International Affairs (FIIA) whose areas of expertise include the U.S. global role, dynamics of major power politics, democratic vulnerability, pandemic security, and Finnish foreign policy, will discuss these topics with UN Director Richard Gowan in an in-person program at Scandinavia House. 

Reservation recommended; register at the link above.

This program has been supported by the Consulate General of Finland in New York and the Finnish Institute of International Affairs.

About the Speakers

Dr. Mika Aaltola is the Director of the Finnish Institute of International Affairs (FIIA). He is also a tenured professor of International Relations and European Union Affairs at Tallinn University (part-time), Estonia, and holds the rank of Docent at Tampere University. He has been a Visiting Fellow at Cambridge University, Sciences Po (CERI), and Johns Hopkins, as well as a visiting professor at the University of Minnesota. Dr Aaltola’s areas of expertise include the U.S. global role, dynamics of major power politics, democratic vulnerability, pandemic security, and Finnish foreign policy. His published peer-reviewed monographs include research on Finnish foreign policy (Tampere University Press, 2003), on the cultural foundations of the U.S. foreign and security policy (Brill, 2008), on ethics and humanitarianism as geopolitical practices (2008, Palgrave), on pandemic security (Routledge 2012), on the power politics of U.S. global infrastructure (Palgrave 2014, Routledge 2016, co-authored). His latest published monograph is Democratic Vulnerability and Autocratic Meddling – The ‘Thucydidean Brink’ in Regressive Geopolitical Competition (Palgrave-Macmillan, 2021). He has also published a monograph on Finnish foreign policy after Crimea (Docendo, 2019) as well as an edited volume together with Mikael Wigell and Sören Scholvin (Geo-economics and Power Politics in the 21st Century: The Revival of Economic Statecraft, Routledge, 2018).

He defended his doctoral degree at Tampere University in 1999 (“The Rhythm, Exception, and Rule in International Relations: The Case of Mad Cow Disease”), received his MA degree from Tampere University (1994) and BA degree from Columbia University (1992).

Richard Gowan oversees the International Crisis Group’s  (ICG) advocacy work at the United Nations, liaising with diplomats and UN officials in New York. Richard was previously a Consulting Analyst with ICG in 2016 and 2017. He has worked with the European Council on Foreign Relations, New York University Center on International Cooperation and the Foreign Policy Centre (London). He has taught at the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University and Stanford in New York. He has also worked as a consultant for the organizations including UN Department of Political Affairs, the UN Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on International Migration, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Rasmussen Global, the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs and Global Affairs Canada.

From 2013 to 2019, he wrote a weekly column (“Diplomatic Fallout”) for World Politics Review.

 
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