Luigi Einaudi honored for defense education work

Luigi Einaudi at Cornell in 2015
Amb. Luigi Einaudi meets with students and faculty during a campus visit in 2005. Photo by Jason Koski, Cornell University Photography.

When Luigi R. Einaudi left the U.S. State Department after 23 years promoting peace and cooperation in Latin America, he decided to share what he had learned with students and scholars around the world.

His work was recognized on January 12, when Undersecretary of State Thomas A. Shannon, Jr., presented him with the Perry Award for Excellence in Defense and Security Education at the National Defense University’s William J. Perry Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies.

Einaudi held a number of posts at the state department, including U.S. ambassador to the Organization of American States and acting secretary general of that institution. He is widely credited for brokering an agreement that ended a centuries-old conflict between Peru and Ecuador.

Einaudi lectures at Cornell in 2015

"Multilateralism matters"

In his remarks at the Perry Award ceremony, Einaudi (seen above lecturing at Cornell in 2015) argued for a recommitment to genuine international cooperation in solving problems. 

"Democracy is as important among countries as within them," he said. “If smaller countries do not receive respect, they are unlikely to be part of the solution.”


Multilateralism Matters (PDF of acceptance speech)

Diplomat Luigi Einaudi honored for defense education work (Cornell Chronicle)

The end of conventional war in Latin America (video of 2015 lecture)

"The world needs laws and relationship-building, not walls or nation-building," he said in his acceptance speech. "Lectures and barriers are less effective than relations built on respect and shared rules."

Strong Cornell connections

Einaudi has strong personal and professional ties to Cornell. His father, Mario, was a professor of government from 1945 to 1972 and the founding director of what is now the Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies.

“For many years Luigi has generously supported the Einaudi Center’s distinctively broad and interdisciplinary approach to foreign policy and international studies, which his father seeded at the center,” said Hirokazu Miyazaki, director of the Einaudi Center and a professor of anthropology. “We are profoundly grateful to Luigi for his dedication to this tradition.” 

Einaudi is a trustee of the San Giacomo Charitable Foundation, which has supported the Einaudi Center and the Cornell Institute for European Studies (CIES) with funds for scholarships, fellowships, research grants, workshops, conferences, and the Einaudi Center’s Distinguished Speaker Series and Practitioner-in-Residence Program.

The foundation also contributes to an initiative on migration and refugees, jointly organized by the Einaudi Center and CIES, which features public lectures, roundtables, workshops, and a multidisciplinary working group.

Support for European studies

Einaudi spends much of his time in Italy, where he has served as a board member of the Fondazione Luigi Einaudi, named for his grandfather, the second president of the Italian Republic.

The Fondazione has hosted conferences in partnership with the Einaudi Center, CIES, and Cornell’s Judith Reppy Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies. It also serves as the home for CIES’s annual Cornell in Turin summer program, a highlight of which is a tour by Luigi Einaudi of his family’s ancestral villa in Dogliani.

“The Perry Award caps a long and distinguished career for Luigi Einaudi as a diplomat and as an educator,” said CIES director Christopher Way, associate professor of government. “Luigi and his family have been wonderful friends of our institute, and we are thrilled that he’s been recognized with this prestigious award.”

Einaudi was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1936, and moved to Ithaca with his family as a boy. After a stint in the U.S. Army, he earned a PhD from Harvard in 1967. He has taught at Harvard, Wesleyan, UCLA, and Georgetown, and has lectured widely in the United States and abroad.

He was a Bartels World Affairs Fellow at Cornell in 1993, and in 2015 gave a public lecture on the Peru-Ecuador war. 

Since 2007 Einaudi has been a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Institute for National Strategic Studies at the National Defense University. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the American Academy of Diplomacy.