Star Island and the International Affairs (IA) conference have often been described as a perfect summer vacation and one that keeps people coming back year after year, generation after generation. Please join us and make IA part of your summer tradition. Click through the images below for a short description of what you might expect.
A Perfect Summer Vacation
… it is the opportunity to interact and share a diversity of ideas and experiences with a group of friendly, open-minded, and inquiring people. For others, it is the chance to be removed from the world, retiring for a week from daily routines to a small beautiful island to reconnect with family and friends, relax on the porch with a good book, and watch the sunrise or sunset.
Start your day…
… with a polar bear dip in the chilly Atlantic Ocean to get the blood flowing, join the morning stretch session on the Front Porch, or grab a cup of coffee or tea and settle into a porch rocker to watch the day begin to emerge. Later in the morning, make your way up the hill to the stone chapel for a thoughtful morning sermon delivered by our minister of the week.
Stimulating theme talks…
… with follow up discussions take place late morning. These are led by recognized experts and provoke conversations among conferees which spill over to the front porch, Happy Hour and the dinner table.
In the afternoon…
… there are several workshops from which to choose, such as chorus, yoga, art, and writing. Other afternoon activities include softball games, swimming, visits to the Marine Lab, kite-flying, rowboating the harbor, trips to the snack bar, and more relaxed time spent rocking in chairs on the porch. Evening activities include a bonfire, intergenerational dance, Island staff talent show, lay-led chapel services, and more.
… the Youth Program is a time to experience the freedom of island life and to gain a deep appreciation of the natural environment in the midst of caring, attentive adults. Activities related to the conference theme together with community building activities, games, crafts, and time to explore the island round out the week. The program offers children the experience of wonder and friendships of long duration, the kind that cause them to start counting down the days until the next year’s IA conference even as they depart on the boat at the end of the week.
The natural beauty…
… and spirit of the island, together with the intellectually stimulating theme talks, the spiritually uplifting sermons, the myriad of daily activities, the strong sense of community among the conferees, and the vibrant Youth Program make the International Affairs conference a truly unique and memorable vacation.
2020 IA Conference
Women in Leadership: Why it Matters
July 25-August 1, 2020
Having women in leadership is a relatively new and increasing global phenomenon. History records powerful queens and notable female warriors, but the entrance of women in large numbers into leadership began in the 20th century.
Having leadership more closely reflect the populations governed is a worthwhile endeavor on its own, but how is this change impacting governance around the world? Theoretically, diversity in various forms in leadership improves deliberations and outcomes. Bringing women into leadership brings different views and life experiences into public debate and may improve overall policy and governance.
At the 2020 International Affairs Conference, we will hear researchers discuss the evidence on what is different about women’s leadership and whether gender diversity in leaders yields better outcomes for governments and people. We will also learn from the experience of practitioners in promoting women’s leadership and how their fight for women’s full parity in leadership can improve societies and our world.
Susan E. Perkins is Associate Professor of Strategic Management at the University of Illinois – Chicago (UIC) where she teaches Global Strategy and Corporate Strategy courses to MBA and Executive Education students. She also teaches internationally at HEC – Paris in the Strategy Specialization MBA program. and Management (2015 – 2017) and Organizational Studies (2011–13) departments.
Her research pertinent to the conference theme focuses on the leadership roles in organizations and how the leadership’s strategic decisions shape organizations and society. Her research has been published in journals including the Harvard Business Review, Administrative Science Quarterly, Global Strategy Journal, and the Journal of International Affairs including a research study on Ethnic Diversity, Gender, and National Leaders which she will be presenting our upcoming conference.
John McMahon is Assistant Professor of Political Science at SUNY Plattsburgh. His research interests include feminist political thought, black political thought, political theories of work and labor, and political phenomenology. He mainly teaches courses in political theory, but has also taught American politics and constitutional law courses. John is one of the co-hosts of the Always Already Podcast, a critical theory podcast collective. More information about John can be found at his website.
Liza Featherstone is Adjunct Professor of International and Public Affairs, Columbia School of International and Public Affairs and writes for the The Nation magazine.
Tanya Henderson is the founder and Executive Director of Mina’s List, which provides tools and resources for female candidates in low income countries.
Gabrielle Bardall is Advisor, Gender, International Foundation of Electoral System (IFES).
Minister of the Week
Minister of the Week is Rali Weaver, Minister at First Church and Parish, Unitarian Universalist, Dedham, Massachusetts.
Children and teens at IA are enthusiastically welcomed into the Youth Program by friendly faces and engaging children’s staff that help to fill each day with fun and new experiences. The program is filled with cool, age-appropriate activities and interesting topics related to the conference theme.
In 2019 the youth were divided into seven groups:
- Toddlers: 18–36 mos
- Barners: PreK-K
- Larries: K, 1st & 2nd grades
- Brookies: 3rd, 4th & 5th grades
- Newtons: 6th & 7th grades
- Marshlandians: 7th – 9th grades
- Parkers/Seniors: 9th-12th grades