Great Decisions Series

March 3, 2015
Aspen, CO, United States

In this eight-week series, participants gather to discuss key foreign policy issues facing the world today, as featured in the 2015 Foreign Policy Association briefing book. This year’s topics will include Russia and the Near Abroad, Privacy in the Digital Age, Sectarianism in the Middle East, India Changes Course, U.S. Policy Toward Africa, Syria’s Refugee Crisis, Human Trafficking in the 21st Century, and Brazil’s Metamorphosis.

This week's topic is Syria's Refugee Crisis. 

Syrians have for a century welcomed over a million refugees from Armenia, Palestine, Iraq and other countries around the region. Now, thanks to a multiyear civil war, they are on track to become the source of the world’s largest refugee population in a matter of months. As Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey and other neighbors strive to accommodate the millions of Syrians, the risk of allowing Syrians to become dependent on emergency aid and forming a “lost generation” remains. Ultimately, though, the safety of displaced Syrians rests with the whole international community.

Fee: $195, includes all sessions, readings and light refreshments.

Great Decisions is currently full.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015 - 7:00pm - 9:00pm
Aspen

In this eight-week series, participants gather to discuss key foreign policy issues facing the world today, as featured in the 2015 Foreign Policy Association briefing book. This year’s topics will include Russia and the Near Abroad, Privacy in the Digital Age, Sectarianism in the Middle East, India Changes Course, U.S. Policy Toward Africa, Syria’s Refugee Crisis, Human Trafficking in the 21st Century, and Brazil’s Metamorphosis.

This week's topic is Syria's Refugee Crisis. 

Syrians have for a century welcomed over a million refugees from Armenia, Palestine, Iraq and other countries around the region. Now, thanks to a multiyear civil war, they are on track to become the source of the world’s largest refugee population in a matter of months. As Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey and other neighbors strive to accommodate the millions of Syrians, the risk of allowing Syrians to become dependent on emergency aid and forming a “lost generation” remains. Ultimately, though, the safety of displaced Syrians rests with the whole international community.

Fee: $195, includes all sessions, readings and light refreshments.

Great Decisions is currently full.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015 - 8:30am - 10:00am
Mountain View Communications and Society Program
The Aspen Institute Roundtable on Information Technology will release its report Managing Digital Assets: The Challenge of Creating and Sustaining Intangible Value in a Data-Driven Economy. The launch event will feature a panel discussion on the report of the 2014 roundtable, in which business executives, government leaders and visionaries examined the implications of emerging information technologies on societies and governments. Read More
Saturday, February 28, 2015 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
Aspen Aspen Words
Aspen Words is proud to bring poets and Roaring Fork Valley favorites Logan Phillips and Myrlin Hepworth back to The Wheeler stage. Joined by Mercedez Holtry and youth from local schools, this evening celebrates the power of the spoken word. Read More
Friday, February 27, 2015 - 6:30pm - 11:00pm
Carbondale Aspen Words

An exhilarating night of Spoken Word Poetry created and performed by the youth of the Roaring Fork Valley. If you’re looking for inspiration, don’t miss this. Student sign up begins at 5:30pm with performances beginning at 6:30pm. The Slam will be followed by a Cumbia party at 9:00pm, featuring DJ and spoken word artist, Logan “Dirtyverbs” Phillips, with heart-pounding Latin music and dance.

More information: http://www.aspenwords.org/spoken-words-poets-schools/

Thursday, February 26, 2015 - 8:15am - 3:00pm
Washington Sports and Society Program
Over the past decade, about a dozen countries have introduced, in a variety of forms, social movements based on a concept that has become known as “physical literacy.” Now we’re helping introduce it to the US. Defined by our working group as “the ability, confidence, and desire to be physically active for life,” physical literacy efforts are a response to a common problem in developed societies: declining rates of physical activity. Read More
Thursday, February 26, 2015 - 8:00am - 5:00pm
Denver

*This event is by invitation only.

Twenty-one high school teams from across Denver will reconvene and present their solutions to a panel of judges in a competition. Students will present on stage in the morning, and share their exhibits in the afternoon. Numerous awards will be given, and one team will be selected to advance and present their work at the 11th annual Aspen Ideas Festival.

Thursday, February 26, 2015 - Friday, February 27, 2015
San Francisco Business and Society Program
On February 26-27, 2015 in San Francisco, CA, the Aspen Institute Business & Society Program will host a dialogue with over 75 senior business leaders on the theme of “Making Purpose Work” about operationalizing a higher purpose within companies to drive innovation and productivity. Read More
Wednesday, February 25, 2015 - 6:30pm - 9:00pm
Aspen

Each year community members come together to engage in lively and rigorous exploration of the Great Books as well as other significant contemporary works. This 5-week series features authors including Montaigne, Kant, Sartre, Freud, Camus, Seneca and others. Aspen Institute moderator Stephen Holley will lead the series. An alumnus of the Aspen Institute Executive Seminar, Stephen has moderated several Institute programs including custom seminars for corporate clients, Athens to Aspen, and has trained to lead our new Life Reimagined Seminars.

Fee: $195, includes readings and light refreshments.

Great Books is currently full.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
New York Aspen Institute Arts Program

Moderated by Aspen Institute Arts Program director Damian Woetzel, author Phil Klay and MusiCorps Wounded Warrior Band Lead Singer Tim Donley will discuss how they have used their respective modes of creative expression to reckon with their past experiences in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars and the aftermaths of their service. Klay, who was named one of the National Book Foundation’s "5 under 35" last year, will read from "Redeployment," his first book and winner of the 2014 National Book Award for Fiction. Donley will perform with MusiCorps Founder and Executive Director Arthur Bloom.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015 - 12:00pm - 2:00pm
Washington Middle East Programs
For a region in the midst of profound change and turmoil, the energy sector in the Middle East sits at the critical nexus of economics and security. Regionally, oil and gas markets drive politics, serve as the basis of borders and boundaries, and can also be a source of financing for militant groups, such as the Islamic State. Domestically, the energy sector is an indispensable driver of economic growth and innovation from Abu Dhabi to Tel Aviv. Yet, oil and gas markets depend on certainty and stability to fuel growth, and in recent years the political economy of the Middle East has instead been defined by its insecurity, uncertainty, and ambiguity in the political and economic spheres. Taken with the falling price of oil, and the closing financial for new exploration and investment in the region, a dark cloud now hangs over the future energy landscape in the Middle East. Read More
Wednesday, February 25, 2015 - 9:00am to Sunday, March 1, 2015 - 5:00pm
Hong Kong
The goal of the China Fellowship Program is to energize China’s private sector business leaders to step up to this challenge in a meaningful fashion. Read More
Wednesday, February 25, 2015 - 8:30am - 6:00pm
Washington Sports and Society Program
Since launching Project Play in 2013, the Aspen Institute Sports & Society Program has hosted 10 roundtables, a televised town hall, and several "Aspen Timeout" panels at national conferences. More than 250 thought leaders have engaged in our dialogues, sharing ideas on how to give every child access to an early, positive experience in sports. The most promising opportunities were identified in our recently released report, Sport for All, Play for Life: A Playbook to Get Every Kid in the Game. A unifying document, it offers a new model for youth sports in America based on health and inclusion, with eight strategies and 40+ ideas on how to get all children active through sports. Read More
Tuesday, February 24, 2015 - 7:00pm - 9:00pm
Aspen

In this eight-week series, participants gather to discuss key foreign policy issues facing the world today, as featured in the 2015 Foreign Policy Association briefing book. This year’s topics will include Russia and the Near Abroad, Privacy in the Digital Age, Sectarianism in the Middle East, India Changes Course, U.S. Policy Toward Africa, Syria’s Refugee Crisis, Human Trafficking in the 21st Century, and Brazil’s Metamorphosis.

This week's topic is U.S. Policy Toward Africa.

Africa is in the midst of an unprecedented transformation. The continent is home to some of the fastest growing economies in the world, and it’s become a draw for foreign investors from across the globe. After the “Obamamania” of 2008 died down, though, the realization that Obama wasn’t going to overturn, or even prioritize, U.S. Africa policy kicked in. Still, the U.S. has promised to promote “strong institutions, not strong men,” and to favor good governance and healthy economies over profit. How can U.S. policy live up to its promise and values while securing its interests in the region?

Fee: $195, includes all sessions, readings and light refreshments.

Great Decisions is currently full.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
San Francisco

Artificial Intelligence: Hype vs Reality

Featuring Andrew Ng, Chief Scientist, Baidu Research; Associate Professor, Stanford; Chairman and Co-Founder, Coursera in conversation with Alexis Madrigal, Silicon Valley Bureau Chief, Fusion

Made possible by a generous donation from Aspen Institute Trustee Diane L. Morris, this series brings the mission and work of the Institute to an invited group of supporters, friends, and new audiences in the San Francisco area. The Series addresses innovation and technology with an underlying theme of leadership based on enduring values and nonpartisan exchange.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015 - 12:00pm - 1:30pm
Washington Center for Native American Youth

The Aspen Institute Center for Native American Youth will present the 2015 Champions of Change leaders.

Monday, February 23, 2015 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
New York

The New York Book Series will featuring Steven Brill discussing his latest book America’s Bitter Pill: How Obamacare Proves That Our System is Broken.

Steven Brill is a journalist, author and founder of Court TV, The American Lawyer Magazine, Journalism Online, and The Yale Journalism Initiative. His articles have been featured in The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, TIME, Esquire, New York Magazine, and Harpers. Brill’s books include New York Times’ bestseller The Teamsters, Class Warfare: Inside the Fight to Fix America’s Schools, and AFTER: How America Confronted the September 12th Era.

 

Monday, February 23, 2015 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
Houston

*This event is by invitation only.

Please join us for a Society of Fellows Discussion Reception in Houston featuring Chris Gergen, Senior Advisor to the Aspen Institute Center for Urban Innovation.

Monday, February 23, 2015 - 5:30pm - 7:00pm
Aspen
Featuring Deb Palmieri, a specialist on Russian/Soviet business, economic and foreign policy affairs for more than 25 years and Honorary Consul General of Russia in Colorado, who will discuss key issues pertaining to the Ukrainian crisis, including two distinct narratives on the origins, cause and responsibility for why it happened. Why do the U.S. and Russia have differing interpretations? What sparked civil war in Ukraine? How to assess and interpret the Ukraine crisis, and what are the implications for U.S.-Russian relations in the future? Has Obama's policy towards Russia succeeded? She will also include discussion of the dynamics in Russia today, including economic and political assessments and Putin's future. What lies ahead for Russia and for U.S.-Russian relations? Read More
Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 5:00pm - 7:00pm
Wye River

Open only to Aspen Wye Fellows and Society of Fellows members.

Dr. Trita Parsi
Founder and president of the National Iranian American Council
“Iran’s Emerging Relationship with the United States”
February 19, 2015 • 5 PM • Houghton House • Queenstown, MD

Dr. Trita Parsi is the Founder and President of the National Iranian American Council, an organization founded to enable greater civic participation by the Iranian-American community and informed decision-making by governments. He is the author of “Treacherous Alliance” and “A Single Roll of the Dice: Obama’s Diplomacy with Iran.” Dr. Parsi is the 2010 winner of the Grawemeyer Award for Ideas Improving World Order. Born in Iran, he moved to Sweden at age four with his family to escape the political repression in Iran where his father, an outspoken academic, was jailed by the Shah and by Ayatollah Khomeini. He earned Master’s degrees at both Uppsala University and Stockholm School of Economics, and a PhD in International Relations from Johns Hopkins School for Advanced International Studies. At a time when the U.S. is having the most diplomatic dialogue with Iran in a generation, and in which Iran and the United States are both battling a co mmon enemy, ISIS, Dr. Parsi will speak with us about what the future holds for Iran – United States relations.

His book “A Single Roll of the Dice” will be available for sale and signing at the event.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 6:30pm - 9:00pm
Aspen

Each year community members come together to engage in lively and rigorous exploration of the Great Books as well as other significant contemporary works. This 5-week series features authors including Montaigne, Kant, Sartre, Freud, Camus, Seneca and others. Aspen Institute moderator Stephen Holley will lead the series. An alumnus of the Aspen Institute Executive Seminar, Stephen has moderated several Institute programs including custom seminars for corporate clients, Athens to Aspen, and has trained to lead our new Life Reimagined Seminars.

Fee: $195, includes readings and light refreshments.

Great Books is currently full.

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