Maintaining an Active Voice in World Affairs

​Promote global identity in the Upstate. Sustain international engagement in our region. Get involved in leading intellectual discussions on critical issues facing the world. At World Affairs Council Upstate, we are participants in shaping a global tomorrow. Join us in fostering a broad perspective of our ever increasing inter-dependent world by sponsoring, donating, or becoming a member of World Affairs Council Upstate.

Dedicated to fostering a deep understanding of global affairs and cultures, and supported by individuals and businesses, Upstate International engages globally-minded South Carolinians directly with each other and with elected officials, civic leaders, and professionals from around the world. Upstate International works with partner organizations to reach all generations and sectors and is always looking to enhance those partnerships and collaborations.

WACA-LogoAbout WACA

“The World Affairs Councils of America is the largest nonprofit  grassroots organization in the United States dedicated to educating and engaging Americans on global issues with nearly 100 councils across 40 states reaching more than half a million people a year.” Learn more at www.worldaffairscouncils.org.

World Affairs Council Upstate Events

Every year, the nation-wide network of World Affairs Councils collectively conducts more than 1200 programs in communities and cities across the nation. Each council sets its own calendar and programs. The WACA offers a number of programs every year, including our annual National Conference, national program series, Leadership Missions, and special programs. It also acts as a distribution center for five national flagship programs: Academic World Quest, It’s Your World!, Great Decisions, Travel the World, and World in Transition.

Upcoming 2020 WACU events:

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Checks and Balances: Presidential Powers in a Crisis with Attorney Steven Buckingham, moderated by Bill Lasser.

An America & the World: Flashpoints Lunch & Learn, ONLINE LIVE & Interactive

Wednesday, June 3 from 12:00 – 1:00pm. Free event. Registration required.

 

Steve Buckingham, a lawyer and mediator in Greenville, is particularly interested in the evolution of the rule of law, and how legal procedure was applied or abused at singular moments to shape the course of history. This is one of those historical moments. How will history judge our leaders? What powers are afforded to a president in times of crisis and do those moments of necessity set precedent that forever change the balance of power in a democracy?

Buck is a solo practitioner, having started his own firm on January 1, 2016. His practice focuses on business disputes. Buck was born and raised in the Republic of East Tennessee, where he developed a deep and long-suffering love for Tennessee football. In 2003, Buck graduated from Furman, magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, with a B.A. in political science. In 2006, he graduated from the University of Richmond School of Law, magna cum laude, during which time he served as the editor-in-chief of the Richmond Law Review. From 2006-07, Buck was a law clerk to the chief federal district judge for the Eastern District of Virginia. In fall 2007, he returned to Greenville where he embarked on private practice.  Since 2007, Buck has been an active member of the Greenville community, having served as a member and board chairman of the Julie Valentine Center and currently as a member of the board of directors for the Greenville Chamber, for which he serves as general counsel.

 

FREE attendance; Registration required.

  • There are other Upcoming WACU Events in the planning stage: If you have an idea for an interesting international business topic or speaker please let us know.

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You may have missed these, so here is a 2nd chance to access the series:

Flight Changed the World: Will COVID-19 Change the Way we Travel?  with David Edwards, President/CEO of the Greenville-Spartanburg Airport, and moderated by Elizabeth Feather.

(Originally aired on May 20, 2020)

Brief summary: Our lives have been forever changed by COVID-19 in many ways, not the least of which in our comfort and options when traveling.  “Should I cancel my trip?” “What is the risk of getting coronavirus on a plane and in the airport?” “How are airlines dealing with those risks?” “Can the airline industry survive if dramatically fewer people are willing to fly?” These and other issues of concern will be addressed by our expert, David Edwards, who has spent his entire career working in the aviation industry.

If you could not attend, or you just want to view it again to refresh yourself on points that were discussed, you are in luck. We have posted PDF files of the slides, if any were used, in the presentation and a YouTube video recording of the talk. Each of these presentations are property of Upstate International and the speakers. They cannot be used or redistributed for commercial purposes without the express and written consent of both Upstate International and the speakers. If you download or view these presentations you are agreeing to the property statement written above. If you are caught in violation of this agreement, action can be taken by owners.

Power Plays: Civil Liberties or Public Health? with Sahar Vardi and Dr. Katherine Barbieri, moderated by Nathan Stock.

(Originally aired live on May , 2020)

Brief summary: Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, while responding to the public health emergency, governments around the world have been using extreme measures severely restricting civic space. While much of this is justified and needed to contain the pandemic, many governments around the world have taken advantage of the situation and are implementing new surveillance mechanisms, silencing opposition, and targeting marginalizing populations as part of ongoing oppression. This presentation will look at some of these restrictions from different countries, how they manifest, and what are some global trends to be aware of, as well as possible alternatives. Listen to Sahar Vardi and Dr. Katherine Barbieri as they focus on human rights and civil liberties as it relates to the COVID-19 response by different governments internationally as well as the response by the U.S. government.

If you could not attend, or you just want to view it again to refresh yourself on points that were discussed, you are in luck. We have posted PDF files of the slides, if any were used, in the presentation and a You Tube video recording of the talk. Each of these presentations are property of Upstate International and the speakers. They cannot be used or redistributed for commercial purposes without the express and written consent of both Upstate International and the speakers. If you download or view these presentations you are agreeing to the property statement written above. If you are caught in violation of this agreement, action can be taken by owners.

Rebels vs. Rule Followers: In a Crisis Who Wins? with Michele Gelfand, moderated by Dr. Courtney Tollison

(Originally aired live on May 7, 2020)

Brief summary:  How are individuals, organizations, communities, and nations shaped by their cultures? Our speaker, Dr. Michele Gelfand has looked at the coronavirus pandemic through the lens of tight and loose cultures. The U.S., she says, is a loose culture with ambivalence toward measures that erode our autonomy and liberty. “The [coronavirus] response so far echoes our loose cultural programming. It’s been conflicted. It’s been unstandardized, it’s been uncoordinated,” she says. “We really do need to change our cultural programming in this context. The problem is that … it’s hard for us to give up liberty for constraint. But it’s critical for our safety.” Join Gelfand and moderator Dr. Courtney Tollison, historian, for this timely discussion.

If you could not attend, or you just want to view it again to refresh yourself on points that were discussed, you are in luck. We have posted PDF files of the slides, if any were used, in the presentation and a You Tube video recording of the talk. Each of these presentations are property of Upstate International and the speakers. They cannot be used or redistributed for commercial purposes without the express and written consent of both Upstate International and the speakers. If you download or view these presentations you are agreeing to the property statement written above. If you are caught in violation of this agreement, action can be taken by owners.

Dirty Planet: What’s the Cost of a Clean Conscience? with John K. Glenn and Bill Marshall, moderated by Nathan Stock

(Originally aired live on April 29, 2020)

Brief summary: We all know that the burning of carbon based fuels releases CO2, the major cause of global climate change.  But did you know that there has been a disproportionate impact of climate change on the developing world? Our distinguished speakers will focus on how businesses in both the US and around the world are responding to the challenges and what they are doing to effect change in industry standards and policy responses. Tune in with John Glenn, Policy Director for the USGLC and Bill Marshall who has over 25 years experience as a COO and CFO of international business units for Dun & Bradstreet.

If you could not attend, or you just want to view it again to refresh yourself on points that were discussed, you are in luck. We have posted PDF files of the slides, if any were used, in the presentation and a You Tube video recording of the talk. Each of these presentations are property of Upstate International and the speakers. They cannot be used or redistributed for commercial purposes without the express and written consent of both Upstate International and the speakers. If you download or view these presentations you are agreeing to the property statement written above. If you are caught in violation of this agreement, action can be taken by owners.

Celebrating  50 Years of Earth Day Amidst the COVID-19 Crisis with Weston Dripps,
moderated by Nathan Stock

(Originally aired live on April 22, 2020)

Brief summary: Join Weston Dripps, Furman University’s Executive Director of the Shi Institute for Sustainable Communities, for a virtual celebration of Earth Day’s 50th anniversary. He will share some of the highlights from the past 50 years of the environmental movement, some environmental observations from the impacts of the covid 19 crisis, and the exciting, emerging field of sustainability science as the path forward for the next 50 years.

If you could not attend, or you just want to view it again to refresh yourself on points that were discussed, you are in luck. We have posted PDF files of the slides used in the presentation and a You Tube video recording of the talk. Each of these presentations are property of Upstate International and the speaker, Weston Dripps. They cannot be used or redistributed for commercial purposes without the express and written consent of both Upstate International and Dr. Dripps. If you download or view these presentations you are agreeing to the property statement written above. If you are caught in violation of this agreement, action can be taken by owners.

Bracing for Impact: Coronavirus and the Global Economy with Dr. Brent Nelsen and Dr. Tom Smythe

(Originally aired live on April 15, 2020). 

Brief summary: A pandemic runs rampant. Globalization facilitated the transmission of the coronavirus and will be transformed by it. We have not yet felt the full economic and political impact of COVID-19, but we can begin to see some early effects. Tune in as Professors Brent Nelsen (Politics and International Affairs, Furman University) and Thomas Smythe (Finance, Florida Gulf Coast University) examine the coming economic shock.

If you could not attend, or you just want to view it again to refresh yourself on points that were discussed, you are in luck. We have posted PDF files of the slides used in the presentation and a You Tube video recording of the talk. Each of these are property of Upstate International and the speakers, Dr. Nelsen and Dr. Smythe. They cannot be used or redistributed for commercial purposes without the express and written consent of both Upstate International and the speakers. If you download or view these presentations you are agreeing to the property statement written above. If you are caught in violation of this agreement, action can be taken by owners.

Spread the Word, Not the Virus: Communication in the Time of COVID-19 with Dr. Shaniece Criss, Furman University, and moderated by Nathan Stock.

(Originally aired live on April 7, 2020).

Brief summary:  There has been so much information about COVID-19, but how do communication strategies make a difference in protecting our community. Dr. Shaniece Criss will discuss the benefits of health crisis communication, and ways you can make a difference. How do we transfer words into actions to keep our community safe?  Join Dr. Criss, and our moderator, Nathan Stock, for a fascinating look at what to say, and not say, in times of crisis.

If you could not attend, or you just want to view it again to refresh yourself on points that were discussed, you are in luck. We have posted PDF files of the slides used in the presentation and a You Tube video recording of the talk. Each of these are property of Upstate International and Dr. Shaniece Criss. They cannot be used or redistributed for commercial purposes without the express and written consent of both Upstate International and Dr. Shaniece Criss. If you download or view these presentations you are agreeing to the property statement written above. If you are caught in violation of this agreement, action can be taken by owners.

“Spread the Word, Not the Virus” PDF Slides, click image below.

Join The World Affairs Council Upstate 

Join us in educating ourselves on, and promoting a global perspective in, our increasingly inter-dependent world by becoming a member of WACU.

WACU Memberships:

  • Individual Membership: $100.
  • Family Membership $125.
  • Corporate Business Memberships at various levels.  Contact Tracie Frese to find the right fit for your organization. Email her at [email protected]

WACU Benefits:

  • Free admission or discounts on events and programs
  • Automatic membership in Upstate International
  • Publication discounts, including: Foreign Affairs (30% off), Foreign Policy (40% off), The Economist (10% off), The New Yorker (80% off), Harper’s Magazine (38% off), Brookings Institution (20% off books) and World Policy Journal (20% off).
  • Access to World Affairs of Council of America (WACA) Resources: WACA Leadership Network; Discussion Boards, Resource Materials, Authors, Events, and Programming
  • WACA Weekly Digest with updates from around the WACA National Network, including attendance and virtual participation opportunities in programs and discussions with U.S. and international leaders, as well as access to a virtual library of renowned speakers and special events.

Join Now: Click Here 

Engage Opportunities with World Affairs Councils of America

Cover to Cover is a monthly program featuring the most influential authors on subjects of national and international importance.

Offered as a benefit to all current WACA Member Councils, Cover to Cover conference calls are opportunities for Council leaders, members, and supporters to engage with esteemed authors on critical issues. Cover to Cover authors often welcome invitations to speak at Councils. In short, the WACA National Office covers a topic with an expert so that Councils may discover a speaker and cover the topic in even greater depth in their own communities, spearheading a national conversation.

WACA Podcasts feature the most influential authors and experts on subjects of national and international importance. Moderated by WACA President and CEO Bill Clifford.

Listen to the Latest Podcast

KNOW NOW Conference Call Series

The World Affairs Councils of America is pleased to present the Know Now conference call series. These calls will feature global thought leaders hosted by WACA as well as local authorities in government, business, academia and cultural fields who are identified and moderated by local Councils, using our national conference call platform to bring local and national issues of global dimensions to our network.

Leadership Missions

For more than two decades, the World Affairs Councils of America has been invited to bring small delegations of council leaders to learn about a host country.  A leadership mission is an overseas fact-finding visit to a city, country, or international organization by a national leadership delegation of the World Affairs Council movement.

TRAVEL the WORLD with World Affairs Councils of America.  Many of our WACA affiliates offer travel programs to cooperating councils, just another benefit of a WACU membership. The trips offer all the highlights of touring, as well as access to political leaders and local experts for behind the scenes briefings not available to most tourists.  Many WACA tours feature Council leaders who are experts in their fields of diplomacy, journalism or academia to create added-value experiences.  And, perhaps most importantly, travelers become Citizen Diplomats with an opportunity to ‘meet the people’ to foster the dynamic exchange of international cultures and ideas.

Please click for details about the World Affairs Council of Charlotte and the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia upcoming travel opportunities .

WACU Steering Committee