Grand Strategy program celebrates 15 years of promoting global leadership

The Brady-Johnson Program in Grand Strategy at Yale hosted an alumni reunion conference on Oct. 14 and 15 that focused on commemorating the first 15 years of the program, debating key current grand strategic issues and discussing the future direction of the program.

Grand Strategy, a cross-disciplinary program that seeks to promote effective leadership in a complex and globalized world, was founded in 2000 by Yale faculty members John Gaddis, Paul Kennedy, and Charles Hill. In 2006, the Brady-Johnson Program in Grand Strategy was inaugurated by President Richard Levin; the initiative was made possible by a gift from Nicholas F. Brady ’52 and Charles B. Johnson ’54. In addition to the year-long course “Studies in Grand Strategy,” the program supports a variety of activities including fellowships, student and faculty research, educational conferences, and other scholarly and field-based programs in grand strategy.

During the two-day conference, alumni, faculty, and current students in the Grand Strategy program discussed and debated contemporary issues, including China’s economic and geopolitical grand strategy, the future of health and the environment, and current security challenges in Russia and Europe. Highlights of the program included a conversation with Gaddis, Kennedy, and Hill reflecting on the original concepts central to the program and their continued relevance today, as well as a bipartisan keynote panel featuring two former National Security advisers, Tom Donilon (2010-2013) and Steve Hadley (2005-2009), who discussed the challenges and opportunities for U.S. foreign policy.

During a seminar focused on the future direction of the program, Grand Strategy Director and Professor Elizabeth Bradley outlined her vision focused on maintaining the core concepts and curriculum of the program, while expanding the principles and methods of grand strategy as relevant to a broad array of contemporary issues. Those issues include security, economic development, political stability, health, and climate sustainability, among other critical topics. To learn more about the program, visit the website.

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