University of Pittsburgh
September 5, 2002

Pitt Names Keller Inaugural Holder of Posvar Chair, New Director of Ridgway Center

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September 6, 2002

PITTSBURGH—William W. Keller––formerly executive director of the Center for International Studies at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) and research director of M.I.T.'s Japan Program––has been named the inaugural holder of the Wesley W. Posvar Chair in International Security Studies and a professor in the University of Pittsburgh's Graduate School of Public and International Affairs (GSPIA). He also is the new director of the Matthew B. Ridgway Center for International Security Studies, which is part of both GSPIA and Pitt's University Center for International Studies (UCIS). GSPIA Dean Carolyn Ban and UCIS Director William Brustein announced the appointment today.

Keller arrived on campus for the beginning of Fall Term and will make his first public appearance as Posvar Chair and Ridgway Center director moderating a UCIS-GSPIA panel discussion at noon Sept. 11 titled "September 11-Perspectives from Abroad"; the free event will take place in Room 2K56 Posvar Hall, 230 S. Bouquet St., in Oakland.

The University of Pittsburgh recently established the Posvar Chair to honor the former Pitt chancellor, who died on July 27, 2001, at age 75. Posvar, who had been a Brigadier General in the United States Air Force, served as chancellor of the University from 1967 to 1991 and was renowned for his early recognition of the importance of international studies, establishing UCIS during his years as Pitt's leader. He was a trustee of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, an advisory trustee of the Rand Corporation, and a founder and president of the International Studies Association, comprising university presidents worldwide. The Posvar Chair will always be held by the professor who also serves as director of Pitt's Ridgway Center.

"It is indeed fitting that we establish this chair in honor of Chancellor Posvar," says Pitt Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg. "Both he and General Ridgway devoted much of their professional lives to security issues, whose critical importance has never been more profoundly felt in our history than today. Wes Posvar also dedicated himself to keeping alive the memory of General Ridgway, creating the Ridgway Center during his tenure as chancellor of the University.

"I would add that we could find not have found a more worthy individual to hold this chair and to direct the Ridgway Center than William Keller."

"Along with his numerous administrative accomplishments and strong record of professional service," says Pitt Provost James V. Maher, "Dr. Keller has established himself as a highly regarded scholar in several areas. His research interests include military industry and technology, national and sectoral innovation systems, global nonproliferation, civil liberties and internal security, the assessment of emerging technologies, and the tension between globalization and security in the 21st century."

"The United States and the international community more generally face a series of seemingly intractable security challenges, from terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction to widespread ethnic conflict, humanitarian emergencies, and sporadic militarism," says Keller. "Pitt's Graduate School of Public and International Affairs and the Ridgway Center provide an excellent base both for developing new approaches to the analysis of 21st-century security dilemmas and for training the next generation of security practitioners who will have to confront them."

Prior to joining M.I.T. in 1997, Keller served for two years as associate professor and deputy director at the Center for Trade and Commercial Diplomacy in the Monterey Institute of International Studies. From 1987 to 1995, he was project director and senior analyst for the United States Congress' Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) in Washington, D.C., directing major studies, including "Multinational Firms and the U.S. Technology Base" and "International Collaboration in Military Technology," among others, and leading Congressional staff delegations to Asian and European countries on behalf of committees of both the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives.

He is the author or coauthor of numerous articles, reports, and other publications, and has written three books: "The Myth of the Global Corporation" (coauthor; Princeton University Press, 1998), "Arm in Arm: the Political Economy of the Global Arms Trade" (Basic Books, 1995), and "The Liberals and J. Edgar Hoover: Rise and Fall of a Domestic Intelligence State" (Princeton University Press, 1989). And he is the coeditor of the book "Crisis and Innovation in Asian Technology," which Cambridge University Press is publishing this year.

Keller holds the A.B. degree in philosophy from Princeton University (1975) and the Master of Arts and Ph.D. degrees in government from Cornell University (1985 and 1986, respectively). Prior to earning his degrees at Cornell, Keller had been a public affairs specialist in the U.S. Department of the Interior's Office of the Secretary (1980-81) and served in the Carter White House as director of communications for the Domestic Policy Staff's Task Force on Youth Employment in the Executive Office of the President, working under Hamilton Jordan (1978-80).

"The Ridgway Center is of critical importance to the University and to GSPIA's international reputation, and William Keller is an enormously significant senior appointment in our Division of International Affairs," says Ban. "His addition to our faculty strengthens greatly our academic program in security and intelligence studies, which is one of our fastest-growing academic majors. The breadth of his academic interests and experience is impressive, and his work addresses some of the most pressing contemporary policy issues."

"William Keller's appointment as Posvar Chair and new director of the Ridgway Center is a real coup for the University of Pittsburgh," adds Brustein. "He is a highly accomplished scholar, administrator, and fund-raiser. I am confident that he will be an energetic steward of the Ridgway Center. In hiring William Keller, we benefit additionally by acquiring a major figure for both our Asian Studies and new Global Studies programs."

The Matthew B. Ridgway Center for International Security Studies was established at the University of Pittsburgh in 1988 under the auspices of both GSPIA and UCIS. Dedicated to the American general whom many historians credit with saving the U.S.-backed effort during the Korean War, the center addresses in innovative ways the new security challenges facing the United States and the international community.