Master's Student Presents at DAKAM International Conference on Security Studies

Monday, 15 May 2017

chloe_bigham_conference_dakam_april2017.jpgChloe Bingham, a Master's candidate in the International Relations and Diplomacy program at AGS (Class of 2018), was accepted to present a paper at an international academic conference on Security Studies that took place in Istanbul in April. She was selected to receive a scholarship from AGS to support her conference participation. Below is a short piece she wrote to share her experience.

"On April 7th and 8th, I attended the International Conference on Wars and Military Conflicts, hosted by DAKAM in Istanbul, Turkey. DAKAM is the Eastern Mediterranean Academic Research Center that has hosted a number of conferences across a variety of disciplines, creating a forum for a network of scholars in Istanbul since 2010. They form their principles “on the basis of a critical perspective, an interdisciplinary approach and social responsibility.”

I was fortunate enough to present a paper I had written last semester for Dr. Ruchi Anand’s “Factors and Theories of Analysis in International Relations and Diplomacy” class. The paper centered on the Democratic Peace Theory, and whether or not it was sufficient to explain the lack of war between the United States and Saudi Arabia. While I had a fifteen-minute slot to present this term paper, others were presenting M.A. or even Ph.D. research in the same amount of time. Two conferences were taking place on the same day (International Relations and Terrorism Studies), so paper topics ranged as much as age and origin of the speakers (which was vast, to say the least).

For me, it was a “first” in several different ways. I had never presented at or even attended an International Relations conference previously. It was interesting to meet people from countries I had never met anyone from before, let alone visited. However, it was comforting to see scholars from all over, coming together to share research on terrorism and war studies in hopes of creating more peace in the world. Luckily, I was able to visit the historical sites of Istanbul while I was there for the conference. I was fascinated to not only see centuries of culture still intact (the only thing older than 250 years in Kentucky are our trees), but also to be a strait away from a continent I had never been so close to before.

The conference and trip as a whole had its ups and downs. My presentation was not perfect, many presenters (myself included) were faced with difficult questions, and travelling to an unknown place can always be daunting. However, I have never experienced anything like it before. I was able to present something I had worked hard on, represent my school and my old Kentucky home, become a published academic, and explore new places. Studying at AGS continues to open doors in the academic world, and I look forward to seeing where it takes me next."

Photo: courtesy of DAKAM


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Sir Christopher MacRae United Kingdom
Member of the Board of Advisors
School of International Relations

quote leftI aim to help my students prepare for life beyond "the groves of academe" - especially how to ask the right questions to work out what is really going on out there. Along the way, they practice writing lucidly and succinctly. It is stimulating teaching such a lively crew. I hope they also find it fun being challenged to analyse the facts without prejudice and to think originally.quote right

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