Thomas Christensen Appointed Interim Dean of the School of International and Public Affairs

October 08, 2021

Dear fellow members of the Columbia community:

I write to announce that Thomas J. Christensen, James T. Shotwell Professor of International Relations, will serve as Interim Dean of Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs, effective January 1, 2022, following the conclusion of Merit Janow’s tenure as Dean.

Tom is one of the nation’s preeminent experts on Chinese foreign policy, East Asian international affairs, and international security. He joined Columbia in 2018, following fifteen years at Princeton University. He is Director of the Columbia-Harvard China and the World Program, which he brought to Columbia from Princeton, and is also Chair of the Editorial Board of the Nancy B. Tucker and Warren I. Cohen Book Series on the United States in Asia at Columbia University Press.

From 2006-2008, he served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs with responsibility for relations with China, Taiwan, and Mongolia. He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a Non-Resident Senior Scholar at the Brookings Institution. In 2002, he was presented with a Distinguished Public Service Award by the United States Department of State. He received his BA in History from Haverford College, an MA in International Relations from the University of Pennsylvania, and a PhD in Political Science from Columbia University.

Tom is an admired teacher, scholar, and colleague whom we are deeply fortunate to count as a member of our community. I am very grateful to Tom for taking on this interim role.


Lee C. Bollinger