Alistair Millar, Founder and Director of the Global Center on Cooperative Security
Alistair Millar is Founder and Director of the Global Center on Cooperative Security. He teaches graduate-level courses on counterterrorism and U.S. foreign policy at The Johns Hopkins University, where he received the 2010–2011 Excellence in Teaching Award for Advanced Academic Programs. He is also a nonresident Senior Fellow at The George Washington University Homeland Security Policy Institute. Previously, he has had lecturing posts at The George Washington University and the Department of Homeland Security’s Center of Excellence on the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism at the University of Maryland. He has written numerous chapters, articles, and reports on international counterterrorism efforts, sanctions regimes, and nonproliferation. He is a coauthor, with Eric Rosand, of Allied Against Terrorism: What’s Needed to Strengthen Worldwide Commitment. He has an MA from Leeds University and a Postgraduate Certificate in Research Methods from the University of Bradford in the United Kingdom.
Why are you a member of WIIS?
The main reason I support WIIS is because women have an important role in international security but in the world as they are make up half -- or slightly more than half of society. The participation of women should reflect the make-up of the society in which we live. Women also reach out to other women, which can have an exponential impact. WIIS helps women all over the world inspire one another. Men have a lot to learn from that.
What do you think is the role of men in advancing women’s leadership in the international peace and security field?
The peace and security field has been traditionally male-dominated—men still hold most of the higher political and research positions. Men need to reach out to women and do more to help give them a chance to gain ground based on merit. It is far better promote people based for what they can do, rather than for who they are. Many women I’ve known and worked with have shown they can do as much as or more than men in the same or higher positions, but they are still not always getting the recognition they deserve. Men can help validate the merit of what women can bring to the table.
Do you have any female role models in this field?
I have many. On example that comes to mind is Dr. Rebecca Johnson from the Acronym Institute has marshaled her skills as an analyst and communicator in the field of non-proliferation. When I worked in that field I was in awe of her abilities. Then I look at recent Secretaries of State, I may not always have agreed with Madeleine Albright, Condoleezza Rice or Hilary Clinton, but the clarity of their vision and their hard work is inspiring and, dare I say, puts many men in similar positions to shame. Also, I would like to see increased awareness of the important roles women play in countries in other parts of the world where they may be facing difficult challenges as women in high-profile position, in or out of government; WIIS is really helping to raise that awareness.
*First published on August 25, 2016