International Relations Society Hosts The Right Honourable Paul Martin

Posted Feb 5, 2018 4:51 pm

By: The International Relations Society

On January 24, the International Relations Society had the pleasure of welcoming The Right Honourable Paul Martin, 21st Prime Minister of Canada, to Trinity College for an intimate conversation with students on the G20 and global governance. Mr. Martin spent two hours in discussion with students of the International Relations Program and the Margaret MacMillan Trinity One Program, answering a variety of questions about his foreign policy experience.

Introductions were made by Professor John Kirton, Director of the International Relations Program at Trinity and founder of the G20 Research Group. Andreas Kyriakos, Co-President of the International Relations Society, presided over the event, and Sophie Barnett and Hélène Émorine, Co-Chairs of the G20 Research Group, along with Professor Louis Pauly, former Chair of the Department of Political Science, guided the conversation through various global governance topics.

Mr. Martin explained the history and establishment of the G20 from the perspective of a founding finance minister and later as prime minister. He highlighted the novelty of the G20 and its ability to quickly and decisively respond to transnational crises, and the necessity of such a collective in a rapidly globalizing world. As the conversation turned towards the future, Mr. Martin spoke of the potential of the G20 to spur on African development in a collaborative and sustainable way.

Aisha Ryan, a third-year International Relations student and Executive member of the International Relations Society, expressed her appreciation for the opportunity to hear Mr. Martin speak: “I am continually blown away by the opportunities that I have as a Trinity College student and student in the International Relations Program. I know that I am receiving the best education both in and out of the classroom – not many students have the chance to hear about statecraft from the perspective of a former prime minister.”

International Relations Society Co-Presidents, Andreas Kyriakos and Riam Kim-McLeod, echoed the sentiment and pointed out that this is but one of many such events that the Society hosts every year. For similar opportunities, students interested in international relations can keep an eye out for the annual International Relations Conference “Shaping Summitry,” which this year will be hosted in collaboration with Trinity’s International Relations Program.

Event photos courtesy of Heather Nichols.