Today, we launched Elusive Pursuits: Lessons from Canada's Interventions Abroad. I am greatly indebted to the folks who agreed to participate in this volume. Today, Chris Penny, Gaëlle Rivard Piché, and Stephen Brown presented their contributions and some thoughts about extending their chapters to the next government here. I am very thankful that Roland Paris could moderate, as he always adds both class and insight. I look forward to repaying him with beer. I am also grateful to Bente Molenaar Neufeld of the Centre for Trade Policy and Law for organizing today's event and the International Development and Research Centre for funding it. There will be another launch of the book on Monday in Toronto by the Munk Centre. I was originally supposed to talk at that event, but I will be on my way to Portugal to observe a Canada/NATO exercise. Yep, sucks to be me.
Roland Paris introduces the panel
What have I learned from this effort? Well, I like to whine about being the editor or co-editor of a volume because I don't feel that it plays to my strengths. I don't think I am good at herding the academic cats nor at editing their work. However, I must, immodestly, suggest (based on this experience and my previous one) that there is one part of this process I do very well--I identify and can persuade/coerce very interesting people to do sharp work. This crew of contributors were most interesting (and most willing to give me friendly abuse), and I learned a great deal from them. If only I could organize workshops that had no edited volume to produce at the end. Indeed, one of the big conclusions I draw from the study of Canadian interventions is humility, and that is perhaps just me projecting a smidge.