Professor Francis Fukuyama: One of the foremost political thinkers of our time visits UiO
It gives me great pleasure to announce the visit of Prof. Francis Fukuyama – author of The End of History - to the University of Oslo. His lecture in the University Aula on October 7 is fully booked but will be streamed live.
Prof. Fukuyama is an academic superstar, having greatly influenced the discourse on the modern state, the rule of law and democratic accountability for decades. Although most people associate his name with The End of History (his famous and provocative book from 1992), his latest two volumes perhaps best illustrate the depth of his knowledge and his impressive ability to cover complex political development spread across centuries. For example, in The Origins of Political Order: From Prehuman Times to the French Revolution (2011), Fukuyama provides an account of how current political institutions have developed since the times of our primate ancestors and until the eve of the French Revolution. And in the more recent Political Order and Political Decay: From the Industrial Revolution to the Globalization of Democracy (2014), Fukuyama explores how societies develop strong, impersonal, and accountable political institutions. He follows the story from the French Revolution to the so-called Arab Spring and the deep dysfunctions of contemporary American politics.
Although he is a political scientist by training, Fukuyama’s work has greatly influenced many other disciplines and exerted considerable impact on research and policy on issues related to global governance. It is therefore particularly pleasing that Prof. Fukuyama will be giving a public lecture at the University Aula on Wednesday 07 October (2-4 pm) as part of the lectures series organized by our Oslo Academy of Global Governance, based at the Centre for Development and the Environment (SUM).
I am thrilled that the University of Oslo has not only been able to attract this academic superstar to visit our campus, but that we actually have a long history of collaboration with him and his colleagues, primarily through Prof. Dan Banik at SUM, who has for many years been affiliated with Stanford University’s Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law, of which Prof. Fukuyama is director. I am also proud of the fact that Prof. Fukuyama was a member of the faculty involved in teaching Norway’s first international Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) – What Works? Promising Practices in International Development – that was offered by the University of Oslo in February-April 2015.
I am told that Prof. Fukuyama’s visit has attracted a huge amount of interest, not just from students and faculty at UiO, but also from wider society, including our political leaders, civil servants, civil society organizations and media. We look forward to hosting him in Oslo and to further cementing our ties with him and his colleagues at Stanford University.
A few words about the Oslo Academy of Global Governance:
In 2015, UiO has a special focus on interdisciplinarity. The recently established Oslo Academy of Global Governance is an interdisciplinary initiative that aims to provide and disseminate knowledge on global challenges in the realms of health, the environment, human rights, poverty, and climate change. The Academy aspires to become a leading venue for discussions on how to secure sustainable development in all dimensions of this concept. The ambition is that the Academy shall develop new theoretical insights and frameworks for international cooperation and norms related to key global challenges.