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Dr. David Foster, HTT social scientist, to speak at IWP

Mon, Oct 19, 2009, 4:30pm - 6:30pm

You are cordially invited to join IWP students, faculty, and staff on Monday, October 19th at 4:30 pm to hear Dr. David Foster, a social scientist on a human terrain team (HTT) in Baghdad, speak about his experience in Iraq.

The Human Terrain System is a controversial new project that embeds social scientists with the US military in Iraq and Afghanistan in order to help them better understand and navigate the human terrain in their area of operations.  Human terrain consists of the intersection of sectarian, tribal, economic, political, historical, and cultural dynamics within a society and is increasingly more important to success in Iraq and Afghanistan than is the traditional geographic terrain.

Dr. David Foster, a Social Scientist with the Panther Human Terrain Team (HTT) in Baghdad, will cover the history and purpose of the Human Terrain System project, the type of work that HTTs do and their place in the evolving strategy of the US military.

Dr. Juliana Geran Pilon, Research Professor of Politics and Culture at IWP, will discuss the historical and ethical context of HTTs for cultural intelligence and fostering inter-civilizational dialogue.  She is the editor of Cultural Intelligence for Winning the Peace.

Dr. John Lenczowski, Founder and President of The Institute of World Politics, will introduce Dr. Foster and provide additional context on applying cultural intelligence as an instrument of national strategy.