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Andrew Cooper

CIGI Distinguished Fellow and BSIA Professor

After graduating from Oxford University with a D.Phil. in international relations, Andrew F. Cooper returned to his undergraduate alma mater, the University of Waterloo, as an assistant professor in the early 1980s.

Through his initial work in the political science department, Andrew helped establish The Centre for Foreign Policy and Federalism at the university, becoming progressively interested in the developing field of global governance.

Over the next two decades, this interest in global governance saw Andrew attain visiting fellowships at Harvard University’s Center for International Affairs, the Australian National University’s Department of International Relations, and at DFAIT as the Léger Fellow, Planning Staff.

In 2000 he was the Canada-US Fulbright Scholar at John Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies. During this time, Andrew was the co-recipient of the Canada-Australia Bicentennial Institutional Research Award for the book Relocating Middle Powers, wrote a number of well-cited scholarly publications and led training sessions on trade issues, governance and diplomacy in Canada, South Africa and at the World Trade Organization.

Andrew joined CIGI in 2002 and has been a resident expert on a wide array of governance topics, including emerging powers, G8 reform, small states, Latin America, global health governance and the phenomenon of celebrity diplomacy. He has authored, co-authored and edited numerous books, policy briefs and journal articles, and been widely quoted and published in the international media.

Dr. Cooper has continued to be involved in international governance scholarship as a professor at the University of Waterloo, and in 2009, he received another Fulbright award as a visiting research chair at the Center on Public Diplomacy (University of Southern California). Andrew is also a member of the International Advisory Board of the GARNET Network of Excellence and The Hague Journal of Diplomacy.
Mark Carney Appointment: A Victory for

Mark Carney Appointment: A Victory for Technocrats

The striking appointment of Mark Carney as the new governor of the Bank of England can be interpreted in a wide number of ways -- from a view that highlights the global governance dimension to British and Canadian-specific aspects of the story. From a transnational perspective, Carney's appointment is another sign of the rise of free-agent technocracy in an age of crisis.
11/27/2012 12:03 EST
South Korea Gets Popular, Gangnam

South Korea Gets Popular, Gangnam Style

In many ways South Korea is on a roll in terms of its positive global image. In soft power terms, it has found an unlikely source of attraction in Psy, whose dance video <em>Gangnam Style</em> has been a global phenomenon. While Psy is the popular face of a confident South Korea, ready and willing to play on the world stage, there are other signs of its success.
11/21/2012 05:39 EST
Argo: How Hollywood Sees

Argo: How Hollywood Sees Canadians

<em>Argo</em>'s treatment of the escape from Tehran of six U.S. embassy staff in January 1980 offers ample psychological compensation for the image of American vulnerability. For, the global identity of a country like Canada is inherently subjective -- that is to say, highly contested in nature.
11/06/2012 05:30 EST
Great Nations Don't Share Embassies,

Great Nations Don't Share Embassies, Harper

Canada has long been a country with a high degree of sensitively -- and astuteness -- about status in the world. The sharing of some embassy services between Canada and the U.K. has already received a lot of attention. In geo-political hierarchical terms, the main risk of Canada cutting rather than building diplomatic infrastructure is that it plays to an image of decline that is contrary to the desire of the Harper government. An agreement with the U.K. then risks displaying not strength but a double image of weakness.
10/11/2012 12:09 EDT
The Trouble With

The Trouble With Twiplomacy

How diplomats respond to new technology to reach diverse publics is a key challenge for 21st century statecraft. Diplomacy is in a constant process of trying to catch up with technology innovation. And when it tries to move out in front, under crisis conditions, the result can often be awkward and counter-productive. A prime illustration came to the fore last week when the U.S. embassy in Cairo got into a testy exchange with the official Twitter account of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood.
09/21/2012 12:11 EDT
Celebrity and Politican Are Not Synonyms, OK

Celebrity and Politican Are Not Synonyms, OK Hollywood?

When a celebrity is promoted as a national leader after gaining celebrity status elsewhere, the gap between expectation and performance is accentuated. (Take Clint Eastwood, for example.) The take-away lesson from this is that celebrities need to do a lengthy form of apprenticeship as they make the transition from celebrity to politician.
09/12/2012 08:01 EDT
Can Canada Become China's New

Can Canada Become China's New Australia?

The variations between Canadian and Australian politics and policies are as interesting as the fundamental similarities between them. Both are highly globalized, mixing multiculturalism with modified versions of the Westminster parliamentary system. Although in the past this nationalism has been directed toward the United States, it is now the question of Chinese access that has become the lightening rod of controversy.
09/07/2012 11:48 EDT
Some Flaws in London Might be Better Than Control in

Some Flaws in London Might be Better Than Control in Beijing

<img alt="2012-07-25-olympicbanner.png" src="" width="300" height="40" /> The 2008 Beijing Olympics comes readily to mind as a well-managed major symbolic event -- it's the model that can and should be emulated. That makes us look at the numerous glitches of security and management flaws of the London games -- the antithesis of the Beijing model. But in many ways messiness may actually be preferable -- especially when judged in retrospect -- to order. And even the Beijing Olympics can be seen as having flaws.
07/28/2012 11:49 EDT
Spain, Ireland, Italy and Greece: Which One Doesn't

Spain, Ireland, Italy and Greece: Which One Doesn't Belong?

If no longer -- thank goodness -- the geo-political cockpit of Europe (caught between rival ideologies in the civil war era), Spain cannot be dismissed as a periphery or marginal country out of step with the European project. Spain has all the features of a highly efficient and accountable country, from its ability to produce majority governments from both the respectable left and right, its elaborate system of federalism, and its increased multicultural identity.
07/18/2012 05:09 EDT
Brussels and Berlin: One Is Not Like the

Brussels and Berlin: One Is Not Like the Other

The two different types of siege may be taking the worlds of Brussels and Berlin -- eventually -- to the same destination. However, the journey is a perilous one. Brussels will continually be under short-term pressure, to help what Berlin sentiment refers to as the Club Med countries. Berlin, alternatively, may be so fixated on the long-term that the EU or the Eurozone as we know it will be hollowed out.
07/05/2012 02:39 EDT
Celebrity Culture Rescues Obama from Being a One Hit

Celebrity Culture Rescues Obama from Being a One Hit Wonder

Only a few months ago, it seemed that Obama was losing his tight grip over the world of entertainment, and especially liberal Hollywood. But Obama's support for gay marriage back in May was met with applause from the Hollywood community. It's not the first time that celebrity endorsements have played such an important role in election, but for Obama, they're his lifeline.
06/06/2012 07:29 EDT
G20 Must Discuss What G8 Was Scared

G20 Must Discuss What G8 Was Scared To

Any sense that the G8 constitutes the apex of global decision-making is long gone. Nor is the G8 the hub of global networking anymore. Whereas the G8 aimed to find a comfort zone in its core membership, the G20 sees values in wider consultation -- with the invitation of five "special guests" (Spain, Chile, Colombia, Benin and Cambodia) to the Los Cabos summit on June 18 and 19.
06/06/2012 03:59 EDT
More at Stake at the 2012 Euro Cup Than Just a

More at Stake at the 2012 Euro Cup Than Just a Trophy

Most athletes see themselves as the first victims of sporting boycotts, as their opportunity for reward suffers. But their combination of high visibility and lows costs makes them the ideal social platform on which to protest.
06/05/2012 07:59 EDT
Lobbying Stand Between Good Ideas and

Lobbying Stand Between Good Ideas and Results

From a political economy perspective however, the important question is how these debates play out at the policy, and political level. Do what for most detached observers seem like good ideas actually stand up to pressures from lobbying exerted by interests that want to dilute, or further delay the introduction of these regulations (formally expected to be phased in from January 2013)?
05/07/2012 01:57 EDT
Argentina, Bete Noire of the

Argentina, Bete Noire of the G20

On top of the generalized global interest about Argentina's move to nationalize its largest energy company YPF, the majority owner of which had been the Spanish energy company Repsol, there is a special local twist as the Mexican President Felipe Calderón has been particularly critical of Argentina's move calling it "very regrettable."
05/02/2012 02:36 EDT
Does it Even Matter What Celebs Think About

Does it Even Matter What Celebs Think About Politics?

When celebrities say silly things, commonly with respect to some form of conspiracy theory involving international relations, they grab attention for themselves, but not for the issue they are talking about.
04/21/2012 11:37 EDT
Here's How Singapore Can Stay in the

Here's How Singapore Can Stay in the Game

I have been spending the last few days in Singapore at a very interesting conference. Such a theme highlights the interest that a small but smart state such as Singapore has in maintaining a balance between the need for rules and regulations in the global order, and the space for innovative practices at the domestic level to keep up its competitive status.
04/02/2012 05:13 EDT
Should a Leader be Put on Trial for Bad

Should a Leader be Put on Trial for Bad Decisions?

The trial of Geir Haarde -- the former Prime Minister of Iceland -- focuses attention on who or what is culpable for a financial crisis. Charged with negligence, Haarde is the first leader to be put on trial for the handling (or mishandling) of the economy up to and during the meltdown of October 2008. I
03/21/2012 10:40 EDT
In the French Election, We are All Occupiers

In the French Election, We are All Occupiers Now

In France the mantra of "soak the rich" has been taken up by the key contenders in the run-up to the first round of the presidential election on April 22. Sarkozy -- notwithstanding his proclivity for the company of the ultra-wealthy and the famous -- has already announced his support for the unilateral imposition of a financial transaction tax.
03/14/2012 07:41 EDT
How Will N'Dour Use His Celebrity

How Will N'Dour Use His Celebrity Now?

The decision by Senegal's constitutional court to rule N'Dour ineligible stymies the opportunity for him to utilize his extraordinary personality to cut through the hard-edged and entrenched terrain of Senegalese politics. Now N'Dour's hybrid or straddling characteristics face an onerous albeit compelling test.
02/16/2012 05:09 EST