Do morals matter? Presidents and foreign policy from FDR to Trump

Online talk
Open to the public
May 2020
Book launch

Join leading international relations scholar Joseph Nye for the launch of his new book, Do Morals Matter? Presidents and Foreign Policy from FDR to Trump. The book examines each of the 14 US presidents since 1945 and scores their foreign policy on three ethical dimensions: their intentions, the means they used and the consequences of their decisions. In addition, he evaluates their leadership qualities, elaborating on which approaches work and which ones do not.

Nye suggests how to better apply moral reasoning to foreign policy, particularly when faced with a future international system that presents not only great power competition from China and Russia, but a host of transnational threats: the illegal drug trade, infectious diseases, terrorism, cybercrime and climate change.

The discussion will be moderated by Ngaire Woods, Dean of the Blavatnik School of Government.

Please note:
This event will take place online via Zoom and be streamed live on our Youtube channel. Please register using the form below and you will be emailed a link with instructions on how to watch the event nearer the time.

About the author

Joseph Nye portraitJoseph Nye is a Harvard University Distinguished Service Professor and former Dean of the Harvard Kennedy School. He received his Bachelor's degree summa cum laude from Princeton University, did postgraduate work at Oxford University on a Rhodes Scholarship, and earned a PhD in political science from Harvard. He has served as Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, Chair of the National Intelligence Council, and Deputy Under Secretary of State for Security Assistance, Science and Technology.