SIPA Event At A Glance: “U.S. Election 2016: What’s Next Now?”

After the election in November, SIPA began organizing various activities and events to address post-election issues and concerns. On November 29, 2016, SIPA held a high-level panel at Columbia Club in midtown, called “U.S. 2016 Election: What’s Next Now?”.

The panel was moderated by Merit E. Janow, Dean of SIPA, and featured seven panelists who are top experts in their field of studies, including economics, political science, war and peace studies, energy and environment policy, and urban planning. During the discussion, panelists shared their views on the significant domestic and international challenges that the new administration will face, from a deeply-divided nation and uncertainty around the policies to future foreign policy and international relations.

David Rothkopf, Visiting Professor of International and Public Affairs, first shared his opinion about President-Elect Trump’s strategy in foreign affairs. He pointed out that Trump’s potential policy is likely to shift the United States into a unilateralism, which might jeopardize the traditional transatlantic partnership. Professor Richard K. Betts put it that President-Elect Trump’s foreign policies could be hard to predict, and he shared his opinions on the future relation between US and Russia.

When it comes to the domestic policy, University Professor Joseph Stiglitz, Nobel Laureate and former chief economist of the World Bank, briefly analyzed Trump’s tax cut and infrastructure plan. He pointed out that to stimulate the economy with massive infrastructure construction could raise the cost of capital and may cause negative effects on the economy. Professor Richard Clarida shared his views on the post-election market reactions and the potential effect of the combination of tight monetary policy and loose fiscal policy.

Professor Ester Fuchs discussed the potential policies related with women, such as affordable birth control, abortion right, children care, and paid family leave. Michael Nutter, Professor of Professional Practice in Urban and Public Affairs, who was also the mayor of Philadelphia, expressed concerns on how President-Elect Trump is going to develop proper urban planning policies. While Professor Steven Cohen, Executive Director of Columbia University Earth Institute, discussed the future challenges in energy and environmental policy.

Around 70 people participated in the event, including SIPA faculty members, current students, alumni, prospective students, and journalists from major media companies. After the one-hour panel discussion, panelists responded to questions from the audience, covering terrorism, enterprise zone, and incoming elections in Europe, etc. Panelists then encouraged SIPA students and alumni to actively engage in studying and shaping the future of public policy.

[Photo by Weiming Shu | Left to right: Richard Clarida, C. Lowell Harriss Professor of Economics and Professor of International and Public; Joseph Stiglitz, University Professor and Nobel Laureate; Ester Fuchs, Professor of International and Public Affairs and Political Science; Michael Nutter, David N. Dinkins Professor of Professional Practice in Urban and Public Affairs; Merit E. Janow, Dean of SIPA; Steven Cohen, Executive Director, Columbia University Earth Institute and Professor in the Practice of Public Affairs; Richard K. Betts, Leo A. Shifrin Professor of War and Peace Studies and Arnold A. Saltzman Professor of War and Peace Studies; David Rothkopf, Visiting Professor of International and Public Affairs]