Guarini Institute

Guarini Institute for Public Affairs

Guarini logoThe Guarini Institute for Public Affairs was established through the generosity of the Honorable Frank J. Guarini, John Cabot University Trustee. The Institute offers an annual series of lectures, seminars, and encounters aimed at enhancing knowledge and understanding of the key issues and challenges facing the world today, in particular those affecting the United States and Europe.

Director: Federigo Argentieri, Ph.D.
Coordinator: Jacqueline Falk Maggi

The Guarini Institute Advisory Council

Doaa Abdel-Motaal holds a B.A. from Swarthmore College, an M.Sc. in Environment and Development studies from the University of Cambridge (UK) and a doctorate in Development studies from the University of Geneva. She is a former chief of staff of the UN International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and deputy chief of staff of the World Trade Organization. An environment and climate change expert, she traveled through the Antarctic and the Arctic and published the book Antartica: The Battle for the Seventh Continent (Praeger, 2016).

Eduardo Albrecht, JCU class of 1999, is a political anthropologist with a history of work across government, non-profit, and multilateral organizations. His research focuses on uses of AI in public decision-making processes. Currently he is a senior fellow at the United Nations University. In the past he was fellow at the European Institute for Asian Studies (EIAS) and the International Peace Institute (IPI). Since receiving his Ph.D. from SOAS in London he has published a wide variety of academic and policy publications. Albrecht has also been teaching at Pukyong National University, John Cabot University, Mercy University, City University of New York (CUNY), and Columbia University's SIPA.

Federigo Argentieri, Director of the Institute, studied politics, history and languages at the Universities of Rome "La Sapienza", Budapest-ELTE, and Harvard. He has widely published on the contemporary history and politics of Central-Eastern Europe and Italy, particularly on the Hungarian Revolution of 1956 and its Western echoes and effects, as well as on Ukraine. He teaches courses on international security and comparative politics of Europe, Latin America and developing countries and regularly contributes to Italy's main newspaper Corriere della Sera and to other Italian and international media.

Angela Brintlinger has a Ph.D. in Slavic Languages and Literatures from the University of Wisconsin/Madison and is Chair of the Department of Slavic and East European Languages and Cultures, Director of the Center for Slavic, East European and Eurasian Studies, and Professor of Slavic Studies at Ohio State University. She writes primarily about Russian literature, culture, and film, and has expertise in biography, war, emigre culture, food studies, and translation. She held the Fulbright Distinguished Chair of Slavic at Warsaw University and regularly leads student tours across Central and Eastern Europe.

Isabella Clough Marinaro is Professor of Sociology and Italian Studies at JCU. She holds a Ph.D. from the University of Bath (UK). She has published widely on the housing and economic situations of Roma communities in Italy and the policy processes affecting them. Her research now focuses on the effects of economic crises on vulnerable social groups, evolving forms of crime nationally, and social change in Rome. She recently published a book focusing on multidimensional informalities in the city: Inhabiting Liminal Spaces: Informalities in Governance, Housing, and Economic Activity in Contemporary Italy (Routledge, 2022). Her current projects explore how social movements in Italy campaign on issues of crime, legislative reform and social justice.

Michael Driessen is Associate Professor of Political Science and International Affairs and Director of the M.A. program in International Affairs at John Cabot University. He also directs the Rome Summer Seminars on Religion and Global Politics. He received his doctorate from the University of Notre Dame and has been a post-doctoral fellow at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service in Doha, Qatar as well as a Jean Monnet Fellow at the European University. Driessen’s books include The Global Politics of Interreligious Dialogue (Oxford, 2023), Human Fraternity and Inclusive Citizenship: Interreligious Engagement in the Mediterranean (ISPI, 2021; co-edited with Fabio Petito and Fadi Daou), and Religion and Democratization (Oxford, 2014). 

John Fanti has a Master's in Engineering Economic Systems from Stanford University and an undergraduate degree from Polytechnic Institute of New York. He started his career at AT&T’s Bell Laboratories in NJ.  He opened AT&T's first office in Italy in 1990 and became AT&T's Regional Managing Director for Southern Europe and then, in 2000, started his own telecom company, Telefant Srl. He has been Vice President and member of the Board of Directors of the American Chamber of Commerce in Italy since 1994.

Enrico Maria Fardella, Associate Director of the Institute, is Global Fellow of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington D.C. and sits on the editorial board of Orizzonte Cina quarterly journal. His fields of interests are: the history of Chinese foreign policy; China relations with the US, Europe and the Middle East from the Cold War to the present. He is a Visiting Professor at JCU and Associate Professor at the Department of Social and Human Sciences of the University of Naples ‘L’Orientale,’ as well as Director of the project, a research platform that looks at China’s role in the wider Mediterranean region. 

Patrizia Feletig graduated in Economics and Business Finance from LUISS in Rome. She has worked in financial institutions, communications groups, in the energy sector such as the national electrical utility association, EV sharing, and nuclear decommissioning. She has published books on renewable energy, nuclear, carbon captures technologies and environmental issues. She is a member of Fondazione Luigi Einaudi Scientific Committee. She is Chairwoman of Associazione Copernicani a non-profit, independent, cross-party, advocacy group on innovation and digital issues.

Costanza Hermanin is a research fellow at the European University Institute in Florence and a visiting professor at the College of Europe in Bruges and SciencesPo Paris. She is a political activist and media commentator as well as the President of EquALL, an NGO promoting inclusiveness and parity in politics. Her research and teaching focus on politics and policy of the European Union, especially in the areas of decision-making, equality budgeting, migration, justice and non-discrimination. She has worked in the cabinet of Italy’s Minister of Justice, and held positions within the European Commission, the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Open Society Foundations in Brussels.

The International Relations Society is a student-based club that seeks to examine the current international politics dynamics through formal and informal academic discussions. Among their most regular meetings are the recurring Politics sessions in which students delve deeper into contemporary international challenges and discuss them in an informal setting, as well as the hosting of guest lecturers during which distinguished scholars share their insights with club members. The IR Society takes advantage of the multicultural backgrounds and the multidisciplinary abilities of John Cabot’s students to enrich its conversations and seeks to create a respectful environment in which its members can enhance their own thinking by discussing with their peers.

Viviana Mazza is the U.S. Correspondent for the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera. She covers U.S. national and international politics, as well as culture and society. She has a M.Sc. in Journalism from Columbia University and a degree in International Law and Refugee Studies from the American University of Cairo and is a Fulbright alumna, a German Marshall Fund fellow and a Young Leader at the Council for the United States and Italy. In 2010 she was awarded the ‘Luchetta Prize’ and the ‘Amerigo Prize’ for journalism, and in 2020 the ‘Biagio Agnes’ prize. She authored several books, including The Girls of Revolution Street (published in Italy in March 2019), a collection of stories about women she met over the last thirteen years in Syria, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Roberto Menotti is Editor-in-chief of Aspenia online, Deputy Editor of Aspenia, and Senior Advisor, International Activities, at Aspen Institute Italia, in Rome. He is a member of the Scientific Board of the NATO Defense College Foundation (since 2018). He has published in specialized journals (including Survival, Europe’s World, Turkish Policy Quarterly, Journal of International Relations and Development, Middle East Quarterly) as well as edited volumes, and is author of four books (in Italian) on international affairs and security issues (Guerini 1999, Laterza 2003 and 2010, Rubbettino 2021). 

Hans Noel is Associate Professor of Government at Georgetown University. His research is on political coalitions, political parties and ideology, with a focus on the United States. He is the author of Political Ideologies and Political Parties in America, and a co-author of The Party Decides: Presidential Nominations Before and After Reform and of Political Parties. His work has appeared in the American Political Science Review, the Journal of Politics and Perspectives on Politics, among other journals. He received his Ph.D. from UCLA in 2006.

Barbara Ottaviani Jones is a Film and Media studies scholar, with a specialization in Linguistics. She received her M.A. from the Department of Communication (D.A.M.S.) at the University of Roma TRE and her Ph.D. from Middlebury College, VT. A former Post-Doctoral Researcher at Arizona State University for the Italian and French department, her research interests include literature, philosophy, sociology, and comparative cinema. She also has a range of varied work experiences including Study Abroad Director, International Student Academic Advisor, Co-Founder of a Film Society, Cyber Fraud Security, and Advance Health Care Planning Facilitator.

Giovanni Quer is an Italian independent researcher and translator based in Haifa, Israel. He is currently pursuing an M.A. in Arabic Language and Literature at Haifa University. He holds a Ph.D. in International Studies from the University of Trento and has worked among others as a researcher at the Center for the Study of Contemporary European Jewry and the Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies, University of Tel Aviv. His main interests are related to the broader Middle East area, including geopolitics, cultural affairs, and social history.

Amy K. Rosenthal, JCU class of 1995, holds an M.Sc. in Comparative Politics from LSE and a Ph.D. in Contemporary European History from Queen Mary, University of London. She has taught at various American university programs in Rome and has been a visiting lecturer at the Goldstein-Goren Department of Jewish Thought, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. As a journalist, she has worked for ABC News and has written extensively on Israeli, Italian and U.S. politics, economics, history, and culture. She currently works as a translator and writes for numerous publications, including The Times of Israel and ParkTime Magazine.

Pratishtha Singh holds a Ph.D. in Italian literature from the University of Delhi. Her previous degrees are from the Department of Germanic and Romance Studies and the School of Language in the University of Delhi and Jawaharlal Nehru University respectively. Having taught Italian literature in India for several years, she is currently actively involved in politics in the country. She contributes regularly to leading dailies in India and has written books on various subjects including poetry, politics, and didactics. Her articles and essays have been published in journals and books across the world, especially in India and Italy.

Andrew Spannaus is a journalist and political analyst, known for his early analysis of the populist revolt across the West with his books on Donald Trump and European protest movements. He is the founder of the newsletter, contributes to Aspenia and numerous other publications, and provides commentary on American politics for Rai News 24, Radio24 and RSI (Swiss Broadcasting Corporation). In March 2002, he was elected to his second term as Chairman of the Milan Foreign Press Association, a position he also held from 2018 to 2020. He lectures on US economic history in the Master's program in International Economics and Politics at ASERI, Catholic University of Milan.

Nicholas Startin, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor in International Relations at John Cabot University. His research focuses primarily on the Radical Right in Europe and on Euroscepticism and opposition to the EU. He has co-edited two highly cited 'open competition' special issues in the field, as well as The Routledge Handbook of Euroscepticism. He is a non-resident Senior Fellow of the Brussels- based Global Governance Institute, the former Chair of the University Association of Contemporary European Studies (UACES) and was formerly Head of Politics, Languages and International Studies (PoLIS) at the University of Bath. He has experience of working with EU policymakers and stakeholders and an established media profile both in the UK and in France.

The Student Government of John Cabot University represents the voice of the students. Student Government works to uphold the interests of the students and to incentivize cooperation between them and faculty and staff. Additionally, it aims to provide an opportunity to express possible concerns and hear the community on suggestions or opinions. The purpose of Student Government is two-fold, as it seeks to engage the community with events but also delves into hearing the concerns of the students in order to bring the values of excellence and responsibility to life. 

Eric R. Terzuolo holds doctorates in History from Stanford University and in Higher Education Administration from The George Washington University. He is the author of numerous publications on the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, arms control, transatlantic relations, the history and geopolitics of Italy, the Balkans and East Central Europe, and on international education. A former US Foreign Service officer (1982-2003) and professor at various universities in Europe (2003-2010), he also chaired the Western Europe Advanced Area Studies course at the Foreign Service Institute (US Department of State) and is currently on the faculty of the American University School of International Service.

Simone Tholens is Associate Professor of International Relations at John Cabot University, and part-time professor at the European University Institute/Robert Schuman Centre. Her main research interest are interventions, security assistance, bordering processes, and materiality of global war practices. After graduating with a Ph.D. in International Relations at the European University Institute (2012), she was a Research Fellow at the EUI, before taking up a post as Senior Lecturer at Cardiff University (2016-2021), where she co-founded and served as Director of the Centre for Conflict, Security and Societies. She has also taught at Johns Hopkins University SAIS Europe and held the UK Leverhulme Trust’s International Academic Fellowship (2020-2021).

Visit Honorable Frank J. Guarini's website.