Joseph Nye to discuss America’s global role at Steamboat seminar

Political science guru is last Seminars at Steamboat speaker this season



Courtesy Photo

Joseph Nye

Past Event

Seminars at Steamboat: Joseph Nye

  • Thursday, August 12, 2010, 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
  • ,
  • Not available


— The balance between “hard” and “soft” power has been the focus of Joseph Nye’s career. The creator of the idea of soft power, favoring diplomacy instead of harder tactics such as military strength, Nye has earned followers among the upper echelons of academia and politics for years. His more recent theory of “smart power,” a combination of hard and soft powers, has had similar impact as the United States continues wars abroad.

As the final speaker in the Seminars at Steamboat series, Nye will speak about “Smart Power: America’s Global Position.” Nye said the speech would be a wide-ranging discussion of “America’s role in the world, questions of where we stand, are we in decline, what does this power mean and how do we use it to compete with China and so forth.”

Although he’s the author of several influential books and magazine articles about weighty topics, Nye said audience members don’t need to do any advance reading for the seminar.

“I think it’s really going to be neat to have ordinary citizens who want to understand what’s going on in the world,” he said.

Nye, a Harvard professor and former dean of Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, has played a role advising presidential administrations and periodically advises President Barack Obama’s administration. He said this is an important time for leaders to understand how to balance political strategies.

“Great leaders know how to combine soft and hard power to exercise smart power, through which they generate trust and mobilize people around forward-looking agendas,” he said in a news release announcing his speech. “If the U.S. leadership can pull that off, this century will be one in which America still has a major role to play.”

The event is free, but a new policy requires that attendees get tickets for admission. No standing room will be allowed. Tickets will be available starting at 3:30 p.m. Thursday at the Strings box office, at the Strings Pavilion. The seminar will start at 5 p.m. at the pavilion.


JustSomeJoe 6 years, 8 months ago

Less famous brother of Bill Nye, the Science Guy.


seeuski 6 years, 8 months ago

How is that diplomacy working for ya? Iran could care less about this "soft power" stuff. The only thing that bullies understand is a good pop in the nose. But what the heck we are now paying for Imam Rauf, the Ground Zero Mosque guy" to go to the Middle East Muslim countries and muster up funding for mega Mosques and the further Islamitization of the USA. Does anyone not see this when we just had the NASA chief claim that Islam has provided great scientific contributions and it is the task of NASA to help Muslims? And don't get me started on Hillary Clinton signing onto the UN treaty that puts our 2nd amendment in the toilet. "Soft diplomacy" or the neutering of this once great Nation?

"The primary currencies of soft power are an actor's values, culture, policies and institutions—and the extent to which these "primary currencies" as Nye calls them, are able to attract or repel other actors to "want what you want."[4] In 2008, Nye applied the concepts of hard and soft power to individual leadership in "The Powers to Lead".

Yea, Iran wants what we HAVE along with N. Korea and Islam, but not what we WANT. We want peace and freedom, does anyone see that as the desires of our enemies? Out of soft power Britain got war with Napoleon and Europe got Hitler to name a few. Israel has been employing "soft power" for decades to what end?


JustSomeJoe 6 years, 8 months ago

So Ski - your plan is for a good pop in the nose to Iran, N. Korea and the rest of Islam? How would you accomplish these pops in the nose? How would you pay for it? How many wars/occupations can you pull of at once? How long will you build your empire? Shall we bomb anyone we disagree with?

This "once great Nation", as you call it, has long been a leader in diplomacy and soft power in the world. As for a mosque in NYC, I'm guessing you are against it. Unfortunately for you, our country was founded on the core principle of freedom of religon. Our 234 year old democracy was founded on many principles protecting the common person against those who wield power (see the Bill of Rights), and we will continue to thrive as a democracy in spite of those who wish to circumvent our core values and rights. If you want to dictate your values to others, I suggest you try moving to a country where you have a shot at being a dictator. You can practice your hard power all you want there. adios.


seeuski 6 years, 8 months ago

So you are for the Mosque at Ground Zero. Awesome. The Imam is involved with Hamas and the recent Flotilla that caused the problems at the Gaza blockade. Go and read the Hamas charter and see what you are backing. Why would these people need to build a Mosque right next to where they killed nearly 3000 people on some of the most expensive property in America? The Governor of NY is offering to help these people if they move away from this site. It is quite unbelievable that people like you hold such stupid ideological feelings in this particular case, I could see it with regards to other political policy but this is just plain heartless. Go find out why they call it the Cordoba House. Something about conquest. And don't you know that people like me just love wars, terrorism, atrocities, death and tyranny? Get a clue. There are so many faults in your concepts one for instance is that we are a Democracy. We are being transformed into a Socialist Democracy from Representative Republic. The "Fundamental Change" you voted for.


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