Free Mini-Conference - Artificial Intelligence: There’s Nothing Artificial About It! Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2019, 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM Order Free Tickets
Annual Conference - February 18-21, 2020
Join us for the eighth annual St. Petersburg Conference on World Affairs. The 3-1/2 Day will begin with the keynote address at the Palladium Theater, followed by three full days of panel discussions covering critical international issues at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg. Speakers and panelists include distinguished diplomats, military, media, and academic experts. Check back regularly as we add details about the 2020 St. Petersburg Conference.

Free Mini Conference - November 6, 2019
This year we added a mini-conference to give a taste of what to expect. It takes place at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital Research and Education Building. This free event offers two panel discussions on Artificial Intelligence anchored by featured speaker Dr. Nicolas Sabouret, noted academician and scholar at Université Paris-Saclay in France.
Last Year's Speakers
Each year the St. Petersburg Conference on World Affairs continues to improve the quantity and caliber of our high-profile panelists. Here is a peak at some of them.
Douglas HerbertJournalist, Commentator

Douglas Herbert launched his journalism career from the bedroom of his childhood home on Manhattan's Upper East Side, hand-writing the Sunday weekly, House News, for a readership of two: his mom and dad. A decade and a half later, in the early 1990s, Douglas landed his first foreign assignment, drinking his way through the vineyards of southwest France as a writer and researcher for Harvard University's student-published Let's Go travel guide. Douglas subsequently freelanced in the Moscow bureau of The New York Times, chronicling the chaotic reality of a New Russia in the wake of Soviet collapse. After reporting stints in Tallinn, Estonia and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Douglas joined CNN, initially at its financial desk in New York City and, later, at CNN International in London, covering the European Union and EU expansion. Today, Douglas is a Paris-based commentator on world affairs for France 24, an international news channel that he joined at its launch in 2006. Douglas has reported from nearly a dozen G7 and G20 summits, from Cannes to Québec to Northern Ireland; UN General Assemblies; the 2016 US presidential election campaign, from the national party conventions to Donald Trump's inauguration; and on the Ukrainian conflict. Douglas's guests on the France 24 Interview show have included Tony Blair, Samantha Power, Garry Kasparov and Stephen Breyer. For the past six years, Douglas has taught a graduate-level fact-checking course at Paris's Sciences Po Journalism School. Last November, he spent a week in Tashkent, Uzbekistan training a new generation of TV journalists in live reporting and breaking news. An avid Russophile, Douglas received his Master's Degree in Russian Studies from Harvard University. If Douglas could banish one term from the English lexicon, it would be: Fake News.

Linda WhitefordProfessor of Anthropology and Founding

Linda M. Whiteford holds a PhD and MA in Anthropology, and a Master's degree in Public Health. She is a Professor of Anthropology and Founding Co-Director of the World Health Organization Collaborating Center for Social Marketing for Social Justice at USF. She helped establish the dual degree program between the USF department of anthropology and the College of Public Health; and graduate certificates in Health, Water, and Culture with USF anthropology and the Colleges of Engineering and Public Health; a graduate certificate in Medical Anthropology; helped establish the USF Centers for Community and Public Scholarship, Sustainability, and USF World. In addition, she has represented USF internationally in Ghana, Cambodia, Thailand, China, Exeter, Dubrovnik, and London.

Raymond ArsenaultProfessor of Southern History, Author, Editor

Raymond Arsenault is the John Hope Franklin Professor of Southern History at the University of South Florida, St. Petersburg, where he has taught since 1980. A specialist in the political, social, environmental, and civil rights history of the American South, he has also taught at the University of Minnesota, Brandeis University, the University of Chicago, the Florida State University Study Abroad Center in London, and the Universite d'Angers, in France, where he was a Fulbright Lecturer in 1984-85. A native of Cape Cod, he was educated at Princeton University and Brandeis University, where he received his Ph.D. in 1981. He served as Associate Director of the Fulbright Commission Summer Institute in American Studies from 1980 to 1988, and he has lectured on American history and culture in a number of countries, including France, Great Britain, Belgium, Germany, Greece, Norway, Iceland, Turkey, Tunisia, and Jordan.

Judy  HeimannForeign Service Officer, Writer

Judith M. Heimann is a retired Senior Foreign Service Officer and a non-fiction writer. One of the first Foreign Service spouses to become a diplomat in her own right, Judy spent most of her adult life abroad chiefly in Western Europe but also in Southeast Asia (the location of most of her books) and Central Africa. She has had a long and varied career. Judy followed closely and reported on the development of the political aspects of the European Union, starting in the early 1980s until 2011, her last assignment to an EU presidency country. In the course of assignments to cover the internal politics in, respectively, Belgium, France and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, she helped promote efforts to eliminate the trafficking of conflict diamonds, helped find and document the reasons for the rapid growth of the Airbus Industry and kept Washington informed of the (failed) efforts of the Mobutu regime's peaceful dissidents to obtain the democratic structures they sought. Her 2016 book, Paying Calls in Shangri-La: Scenes from A Woman's Life in American Diplomacy (Ohio University Press), was nominated for the Academy of Diplomacy's Douglas Dillon award for the best book of 2016-2017 on the art of diplomacy. She is currently working on a book of her personal memories of working-level American diplomacy abroad, primarily in the pre-internet era. She speaks French, Dutch and Indonesian/Malay.

Judy KreithDance Educator and Choreographer

Judy Kreith is a professional dance educator and choreographer. She received her MA Degree from Stanford University. Her mother, Marion Finkels Kreith, is the key inspiration for the documentary film, Cuba's Forgotten Jewels: a haven in Havana. Judy has extensively studied Cuban dance and while in Cuba, began research into the Jewish refugees' diamond polishing industry that flourished in Havana during the Second World War, working on-site with Cuban historians. Judy contributes her research and knowledge, along with her personal connection and passion for this project and its potential impact. She has spoken on this topic to many groups, including a conference at the University of Antwerp, Belgium.

Paul KubicekProfessor of Political Science

Paul Kubicek is Professor of Political Science and Director of the International Studies Program at Oakland University in Rochester Michigan. He received his PhD from the University of Michigan in 1995. He has also taught in Turkey, Ukraine, and Austria, and was a Fulbright Scholar in Slovenia in 2007. Much of his research is on democratization, the European Union, Turkish politics and foreign policy, and post-communist Eastern Europe and Central Asia. He has published in journals such as Comparative Politics, Political Science Quarterly, Political Studies, and Democratization. His two most recent books are Political Islam and Democratization in the Muslim World (2015) and (co-editor) Democratic Consolidation in Turkey: Micro and Macro Challenges (2016). He also serves as a contributor to Freedom House's annual Freedom in the World report and is the editor of Turkish Studies.

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