Prof. Dina Badie writes for “The Huffington Post” on issues of international security, foreign policy
Centre College professors encourage their students to pursue their passions, while also challenging themselves to reach new goals. Assistant Professor of Politics and International Studies Dina Badie is now a regular contributor to The Huffington Post, opening new doors for her to engage in public discourse on international politics.
Badie will provide political commentary on her own blog on the The Huffington Post, a popular online news outlet that covers national and international politics, business, entertainment, technology, culture and more. Her posts will focus on issues of security and foreign policy, especially in the Middle East and East Asia. Her debut post, “Who Is to Blame for the Rise of ISIS?”, examines the root political and historical causes of turmoil in Iraq and Syria and argues that the problem of ISIS is due in part to past missteps made by the British.
According to Badie, contributing to public news sources such as The Huffington Post is part of the “civic scholar” role.
“Civic scholars engage with both their peers in the academic community as well as with the broader public,” Badie explains. “This means publishing in academic journals, but also publishing in a wider public space, like newspapers and blogs.”
Badie has struck a balance between writing for both academic and public audiences. In addition to her new Huffington Post blog, Badie has writen op-eds for the Lexington Herald-Leader and has been published in scholarly journals such as Foreign Policy Analysis, International Studies Perspective and The Routledge Handbook of American Foreign Policy.
Writing for a public audience does not mean simplifying the issues, however. As a civic scholar, Badie believes providing the public with a more sophisticated understanding of these topics is of the utmost importance.
“I like to explain the complexities of these issues, but in a way that is accessible,” she says. “I think it’s the job of scholars, especially in politics, to contribute to the public debate, rather than leaving it to the pundits.”
Moving beyond meaningless punditry is a lesson Badie and the rest of the College’s politics program strive to impart to their students. Badie’s latest post, “A Smackdown on ISIS . . . Over Pizza,” features a new tradition politics majors at Centre know well: the once-a-semester Badie-Bosco Smackdown, part of the broader “Pizza and Politics” series. Students and faculty in the politics program gather regularly to discuss controversial international issues of the day over pizza, and the battles between Badie and fellow Assistant Professor of International Studies Robert Bosco have become famous around campus and now newsworthy beyond.
“We believe that civic engagement is imperative for healthy political discourse that goes beyond party affiliation or electoral concerns,” writes Badie, before offering a play-by-play of her and Bosco’s debate regarding how the U.S. should approach the problem of ISIS.
Through both her teaching and her work as a civic scholar, Badie emphasizes the importance of thinking critically about politics as well as making certain these ideas are shared with the public.
For future blog posts, check Badie’s main blog page.
by Caitlan Cole