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History and Public Policy Program Advisory Board

The History and Public Policy Program is advised by an eminent group of historians, international relations experts, and policy practitioners, with Dr. Hope Harrison and Dr. Melvyn Leffler presently serving as co-chairs of the Advisory Board.

History and Public Policy Program Advisory Board


Hope M. Harrison (Advisory Board Co-Chair) is Professor of History and International Affairs at The George Washington University. She is an expert on the Cold War, Germany, Russia, and the uses and misuses of history in international affairs. Dr. Harrison is the author of many articles and two monographs: After the Berlin Wall: Memory and the Making of the New Germany, 1989 to the Present (Cambridge University Press, 2019); and Driving the Soviets up the Wall (Princeton University Press, 2003). The latter won the 2004 Marshall Shulman Prize from the American Association for Advanced Slavic Studies and was also published to wide acclaim in German translation (Ulbrichts Mauer, Propyläen, 2011). She received her B.A. in Social Studies from Harvard University and her Ph.D. in Political Science from Columbia University. Dr. Harrison is the recipient of fellowships from the Wilson Center, Fulbright, the Nobel Institute, the American Academy in Berlin, Harvard, and the Council on Foreign Relations. Dr. Harrison has served on the staff of the National Security Council as Director for European and Eurasian Affairs, (2000-2001), directed the Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies at GW’s Elliott School of International Affairs (2005-2009), and currently serves on the boards of four Berlin-based institutions: the Berlin Wall Association; the Allied Museum; the Black Box Cold War Exhibit at Checkpoint Charlie; and the Foundation for German-American Scientific Relations. She has appeared on CNN, the History Channel, the Science Channel, C-SPAN, the BBC, Deutschlandradio, ZDF, and Spiegel-TV. (Term: 2020-2021)

Melvyn P. Leffler (Advisory Board Co-Chair) is Emeritus Professor of American History at The University of Virginia. He is the author of several books on the Cold War and on US relations with Europe, including For the Soul of Mankind (2007), which won the George Louis Beer Prize from the American Historical Association, and A Preponderance of Power (1993), which won the Bancroft, Hoover, and Ferrell Prizes. In 2010, he and Odd Arne Westad co-edited the three volume Cambridge History of the Cold War. Along with Jeff Legro and Will Hitchcock, he is co-editor of Shaper Nations: Strategies for a Changing World (Harvard University Press, 2016). Most recently, he published Safeguarding Democratic Nationalism: US Foreign Policy and National Security, 1920-2015 (Princeton, 2017). He has served as president of the Society for the History of American Foreign Relations, Harmsworth Professor at Oxford University, and Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences at The University of Virginia. He is now writing about the foreign policies of the George W. Bush administration. (Term: 2020-2021)


Hal Brands is Henry A. Kissinger Distinguished Professor of Global Affairs at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. He also writes a weekly column for Bloomberg Opinion, and is the author of several books on US foreign policy and global affairs. (Term: 2020-2021)

Ambassador Eric S. Edelman retired as a Career Minister from the US Foreign Service on May 1, 2009. He is currently Hertog Distinguished Practitioner in Residence at the Philip Merrill Center for Strategic Studies at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies, Counselor at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, and a non-resident senior fellow at the Miller Center for Public Affairs at the University of Virginia. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the United States Institute of Peace and Chaired the National Defense Strategy Commission, 2017-2018. (Term: 2020-2021)

Cindy Ewing is an Assistant Professor of History at the University of Missouri. Her research focuses on modern South and Southeast Asia and the global connections between decolonization, human rights, and the Cold War. She is currently preparing her first book manuscript, entitled Gatekeepers: Human Rights and the International Solidarities of the Third World. Cindy is Senior Editor at H-Diplo, The New Rambler Review, and the Toynbee Prize Foundation. She has held fellowships and visiting positions at the Clements Center for National Security at the University of Texas at Austin, the University of Virginia, the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations, and the MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies. Cindy’s work has been awarded the LSE-GWU-UCSB Saki Ruth Dockrill Memorial Prize, the Arthur and Mary Wright Yale Dissertation Prize, the ISA Lynne Rienner Publishers Award for Best Dissertation, and the Oxford University Press USA Dissertation Prize in International History.  (Term: 2021-2022)

James Goldgeier is a Robert Bosch Senior Visiting Fellow at the Center on the United States and Europe at the Brookings Institution and a Professor of International Relations at the School of International Service at American University, where he served as Dean from 2011-17. Previously, he was a professor at George Washington University, where from 2001-05, he directed the Elliott School’s Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies. Before moving to Washington, D.C., he taught at Cornell University. He has served as a director for Russian, Ukrainian and Eurasian Affairs on the National Security Council Staff, and he has held appointments or fellowships at the Library of Congress, the Brookings Institution, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, the Transatlantic Academy at the German Marshall Fund, the Hoover Institution, and the Stanford Center for International Security and Cooperation. He is past president of the Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs, and he co-directs the Bridging the Gap project, funded by the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the Frankel Family Foundation. He has authored or co-authored four books, and he has received the Edgar Furniss book award and the Georgetown University Lepgold Book Prize. (Term: 2020-2021)

Nicole Hemmer is an associate research scholar with the Obama Presidency Oral History Project at Columbia University. She is author of Messengers of the Right: Conservative Media and the Transformation of American Politics (2016) and working on a new book, Pitchfork Politics, about conservatism in the 1990s. She is founder of Made by History at the Washington Post, host of the Past Present and A12 podcasts, and writes for a number of national and international news outlets. (Term: 2020-2021)

Leopoldo Nuti is Professor of History of International Relations at Roma Tre University and Co-Director of the Nuclear Proliferation International History Project. From 2014 to 2018 he was President of the Italian Society of International History. He has published extensively in Italian, English, and French on US-Italian relations and Italian foreign and security policy. He coedited The Euromissiles Crisis and the End of the Cold War (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2015), and his most recent articles are “Italy as a Hedging State? The Problematic Ratification of the Non-Proliferation Treaty,” in Elisabetta Bini and Igor Londaro (eds.), Nuclear Italy: an International History of Italian Nuclear Policies during the Cold War (Trieste: Eut, 2017) and “The Making of the Nuclear Order and the Historiography on the 1970s,” in The International History Review 40, no. 5 (2018). (Term: 2020-2021)

Svetlana Savranskaya is director of Russia programs (since 2001) at the National Security Archive, George Washington University. She is the author, with Thomas Blanton, of the book The Last Superpower Summits: Gorbachev, Reagan and Bush, (Budapest: Central European University Press, 2016), and editor of the book by the late Sergo Mikoyan, The Soviet Cuban Missile Crisis: Castro, Mikoyan, Kennedy, Khrushchev and the Missiles of November (Stanford: Stanford University Press/Woodrow Wilson Center Press, 2012). Dr. Savranskaya won the Link-Kuehl Prize in 2011 from the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations, recognizing the best documentary publication over the previous two years, for her book (with Thomas Blanton and Vladislav Zubok) “Masterpieces of History”: The Peaceful End of the Cold War in Europe 1989 (Budapest/New York: Central European University Press, 2010). (Term: 2020-2021)

Thomas Alan Schwartz is the Distinguished Professor of History and Professor of Political Science and European Studies at Vanderbilt University. Educated at Columbia, Oxford and Harvard Universities, he is the author of the books America’s Germany: John J. McCloy and the Federal Republic of Germany (1991) and Lyndon Johnson and Europe: In the Shadow of Vietnam (2003), and Henry Kissinger and American Power: A Political Biography (2020). Along with Matthias Schulz, he produced the edited volume, The Strained Alliance: US-European Relations in the 1970s, (2009). He has received fellowships from the German Historical Institute, the Norwegian Nobel Institute, the Woodrow Wilson Center, and the Social Science Research Center. He served on the Historical Advisory Committee of the Department of State, and was the President of the Society of Historians of American Foreign Relations. While teaching at Vanderbilt, he has received the Madison Sarratt Teaching prize (2013) and the Alumni Education Award (2008). (Term: 2020-2021)

Sarah B. Snyder teaches at American University’s School of International Service. She is the author of two award-winning books, From Selma to Moscow: How Human Rights Activists Transformed US Foreign Policy (Columbia University Press, 2018) and Human Rights Activism and the End of the Cold War: A Transnational History of the Helsinki Network (Cambridge University Press, 2011). (Term: 2020-2021)

Samuel F. Wells Jr. is a Cold War Fellow in the History and Public Policy Program at the Wilson Center, where he founded the International Security Studies Program and later served as Associate Director and Deputy Director. His areas of expertise are US foreign and security policies, transatlantic relations, and security issues in the Middle East and Northeast Asia. His publications include: "Sounding the Tocsin: NSC 68 and the Soviet Threat," International Security (Fall 1979); Economics and World Power: An Assessment of American Diplomacy Since 1789 (1984); The Strategic Triangle: France, Germany, and the United States in the Shaping of the New Europe (2006); with Sherrill Brown Wells, "Shared Sovereignty in the European Union: Germany's Economic Governance," in Ernest R. May et al., History and Neorealism (2010); and Fearing the Worst: How Korea Transformed the Cold War (2019). (Term: 2020-2021)

Odd Arne Westad teaches history and global affairs at Yale. He has previously been School Professor of International History at LSE and S.T. Lee Professor of US-Asia Relations at Harvard. Among his books are The Global Cold War, which won the Bancroft Prize, and Decisive Encounters, a history of the Chinese civil war. He also co-edited the three-volume Cambridge History of the Cold War. His most recent books are Restless Empire: China and the World since 1750, which won the Asia Society’s book award, The Cold War: A World History, and Empire and Righteous Nation: 600 Years of China-Korea Relations. (Term: 2020-2021)