Small World, Big Problems

by JHU SAIS Philip Merrill Center for Strategic Studies

Small World, Big Problems – a SAIS Strategy Podcast.

A SAIS student podcast supported by the Philip Merrill Center for Strategic Studies.

​In Small World, Big Problems, we ask the experts about the biggest challenges in the world of strategy and national security.

​It’s a small world, and it’s only getting smaller. But it seems like every day, there is a new problem on the hori ... 

 ...  Read more

Podcast episodes

  • Season 2

  • Hidden Gears: The Inner Workings of the Defense Industry, Part 2

    Hidden Gears: The Inner Workings of the Defense Industry, Part 2

    In part two of this interview with Richard "Otter" Bew, we dive deep into the challenges currently facing the defense industry. The digital revolution is upending how we approach defense; back in the day, we could plan out development on a ten or fifteen year timeline. But now, game-changing technologies are being released every few months. The militaries that can best capitalize on this revolution will be the most successful in the 21st century. How can the US keep up? And what are the stakes if we don't? This episode was researched, edited, and produced by Eli George.

  • Hidden Gears: The Inner Workings of the Defense Industry, Part 1

    Hidden Gears: The Inner Workings of the Defense Industry, Part 1

    The American defense industry employs over a million people—in the military, in civilian jobs, and at private companies—and every part matters. Few people have spent as much time inside this complex machine as our guest this week: Richard T. Bew, the Chief of Staff for Lockheed Martin. In part one of this two-part interview, we talk with him about his time as a Marine aviator, the importance of human capital in the civil-military relationship, and the changing character of war in the 21st century. This episode was researched, recorded, and edited by Eli George.

  • Transatlantic Security Cooperation amidst Global Uncertainty

    Transatlantic Security Cooperation amidst Global Uncertainty

    The EU and the US have long been steadfast partners across the Atlantic, with healthy trade relations and cooperation in numerous sectors of foreign policy, including combatting climate change, promoting the rule of law, and international security. With several international security crises taking place globally, it is important for the cooperation between the two to remain strong. However, elections on both sides of the Atlantic this upcoming year have once again raised questions of how much we can take the relationship for granted. On today’s episode, Deputy Ambassador of the EU to the US Michael Curtis discusses Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the Middle-East, and relations with China, and how it has impacted his work in Washington DC. This interview is conducted by Miloš Maggiore, and researched by Camilla Manning, Juliette Verlaque, and Ryan Sheets.

  • Deepening Crises and Opportunities in Bolivia

    Deepening Crises and Opportunities in Bolivia

    Over the last 15 years, Bolivia has experienced political and economic ups and downs. The MAS, a socialist part with a leftist agenda, led a period of high growth and a vibrant new political party structure. Now, the party is experiencing internal conflict and the country has a mighty foreign exchange crisis on its hands. If Bolivia plays its cards right, though, it could improve its economic, and thus political standing. In discussing Bolivia's current challenges and future opportunities, Noah Martin sits down with Dr. Calla Hummel to get a better understanding of the country’s political economy and what’s in store going forward.  Research, hosted, and edited by Noah Martin. Produced by Noah Martin and Dylan Yachyshen.

  • The Dragon and the Bear: Unpacking Sino-Russian Relations Amidst War

    The Dragon and the Bear: Unpacking Sino-Russian Relations Amidst War

    We are joined by Sergey Radchenko, a Wilson E. Schmidt Distinguished Professor at SAIS Europe, and Director of the Bologna Institute for Policy Research. An expert on Sino-Soviet relations, Soviet and Chinese foreign policies, he discusses the State of Sino-Russia Relations in the wake of a raging war in Ukraine. Connor Crago conducted this interview.  The episode was researched and produced by Benie Kwarteng and Adi Baurzhanuly.