IPI HomeAboutStaffJohn L. Hirsch

 

  |  share share back back

John L. Hirsch

Senior Adviser | hirsch@ipinst.org

John L. Hirsch is currently a senior adviser to IPI President Terje Rød-Larsen after having held various positions at IPI, including Vice President and Acting Head of the Africa Program. He is also Adjunct Professor at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA) and served as Director of the Occidental College United Nations Program from 2002-2011.

Before joining IPI, Ambassador Hirsch served as United States Ambassador to the Republic of Sierra Leone from 1995-1998. His extensive African experience includes assignments in Somalia from 1984-1986, and subsequent roles as Political Adviser to the Commander of UNITAF, General Robert Johnston, and as Deputy to President Bush's Special Envoy, Ambassador Robert Oakley from 1992-1993.

Ambassador Hirsch served as Consul General in Johannesburg, South Africa from 1990-1993, the years of transition from apartheid to non-racial multiparty democracy. His earlier assignments in Israel at the start of the Middle East peace process in the mid-seventies and, subsequently, at the US Mission to the United Nations and in Pakistan have dealt with major issues of multilateral diplomacy and United Nations peacekeeping.

Ambassador Hirsch was a Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations in 1993 and 1994 and Diplomat-in-Residence at Medgar Evers College, City University of New York, from 1994-1995. He was Director of the International Fellows Program at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs for the 2000-01 academic year.

Ambassador Hirsch received his BA in American studies from Columbia University in 1957 and his PhD in European history from the University of Wisconsin in 1965. He was a Fulbright Scholar in Turin, Italy, in 1962 and 1963, where he wrote a dissertation on the Italian Resistance Movement and its impact on postwar Italian political developments.

His publications include Sierra Leone: Diamonds and the Struggle for Democracy (Lynne Rienner, 2001) and Somalia and Operation Restore Hope: Reflections on Peacemaking and Peacekeeping, co-authored with Ambassador Robert B. Oakley (US Institute of Peace, March 1995). His chapter "Peace and Justice: Mozambique and Sierra Leone Compared" appeared in Peace versus Justice? The Dilemmas of Transitional Justice in Africa, edited by Chandra Lekha Sriram and Suren Pillay (Durban: University of KwaZulu-Natal Press, 2009).




IPI is proud to have received high ratings from three leading charity watchdogs, Charity Navigator and Charity Watchdog, and Guidestar.

IPI is grateful to our generous friends and donors who provide both intellectual and financial support. Their contributions help us in a very practical way to achieve program objectives, and their leadership is an invaluable resource to our organization.

Support IPI

The Global Observatory

Does World War I Echo in East Asia’s Growing Tensions?
Lessons of pre-WWI alliances, nationalism, and crises can help East Asia defuse its tensions today.

2014 Top 10 Issues to Watch in Peace & Security: The Global Arena
A list of ten key issues to watch that are likely to impact international peace and security in 2014, compiled by IPI's Francesco Mancini.

The Global Observatory, produced by IPI, provides timely analysis on peace and security issues, interviews with leading policymakers, interactive maps, and more.

Featured Publication

Featured Image

October 10, 2014
Mediating Transition in Yemen: Achievements and Lessons

 

Yemen remains the only site of an Arab Spring uprising that ended in a negotiated agreement and an internationally supported transition process. In light of the recent conflict in the North of Yemen and Sana’a, with a constitution-drafting process underway, a referendum to approve a draft constitution, and coming elections all within the next year, the open dialogue established among key parties and factions in Yemen’s transition has become increasingly important.