The Duck of Minerva

Beyond “Beyond the Bio Note”

28 March 2008

In response to our discussion about how explicitly IR scholars should reveal the personal influences on their work Dan Drezner points out that IR scholars do tend to have (and take) somewhat more leeway in book prefaces than in journal bio-notes, and that’s true.

Seemingly, the norms are also somewhat relaxed for very senior IR scholars ruminating about the theory/policy divide. See below the fold.

Autobiographical Reflections on Bridging the Policy/Academy Divide
TA05 Thursday 8:30 ‐ 10:15 AM Room:Imperial B

University of Southern California
J. Ann Tickner

Roundtable Discussants

Princeton University
Robert Keohane

Stanford University
Stephen Krasner

Harvard University
Joseph N. Nye

University of Toronto
Janice Gross Stein

It was a riveting riot of ruminations. Some nuggets of truth from the masters:

Stephen Krasner: “If they call you ‘Professor’ in Washington, you’re finished.”

Joseph Nye: “Nail down your academic credentials first, then go get policy experience, then come back to academia.” If you do it the other way around, your academic career is finished.

Robert Keohane: Prefers “hiking and Shakespeare” to hob-nobbing with policy wonks, but says if you’re going to do it you must be self-disciplined, maintain a moral character and avoid “political prostitution.”