This event is co-sponsored with The Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies
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Abstract: The world’s largest organization is also one of its most mysterious. The Department of Defense (DOD) employs more men and women than Amazon, McDonald’s, FedEx, Target, and General Electric combined. Yet most Americans know little about it beyond its $700 billion budget and iconic five-sided headquarters. Now, the leader who knows the Pentagon best pulls back the curtain on an institution that many regard with a mix of awe and suspicion, revealing not just what it does but why, and why it matters. Former Secretary of Defense Ash Carter will offer an insider’s account of how America’s military works—and how it should work. It is also a timely reassessment of U.S. foreign policy and national security strategies in a rapidly changing world, and a timeless reflection on the leadership qualities essential to not only run but also reform a dauntingly complex organization.
For or over thirty-five years Ash Carter served in numerous jobs in the Department of Defense, mostly recently as the twenty-fifth Secretary of Defense under President Obama. He currently serves as the Director of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard Kennedy School and an innovation fellow at MIT. He also is a Rhodes scholar with a PhD in nuclear physics.