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Mershon Center Speaker Series
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James Morrow
The Law of War and the Treatment of Prisoners of War during the World Wars
Friday, March 24, 2017, 12:00pm - 01:30pm
Mershon Center for International Security Studies
1501 Neil Avenue, Room 120
Columbus, Ohio 43201

James Morrowr

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James Morrow's research addresses theories of international politics, both their logical development and empirical testing. He pioneered the application of noncooperative game theory from economics to international politics. His published work covers crisis bargaining, the causes of war, military alliances, arms races, power transition theory, links between international trade and conflict, the role of international institutions, and domestic politics and foreign policy. Professor Morrow has written three books, Order within Anarchy, The Logic of Political Survival, coauthored with Bruce Bueno de Mesquita, Alastair Smith, Randolph M. Siverson, and Game Theory for Political Scientists.

He has also published over 30 articles in refereed journals and over 30 other papers and book chapters. Professor Morrow is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He received the Karl Deutsch Award from the International Studies Association in 1994. Morrow was President of the Peace Science Society in 2008-2009 and has held fellowships from the Social Science Research Council and the Hoover Institution. He served on the National Science Foundation Advisory Panel for Political Science from 1995-1997.


International humanitarian law on prisoners of war and other issues has grown extensively over the last century and a half. I lay out a general argument about how the law can aid warring parties in limiting violence during wartime. The patterns of compliance and violations during the World Wars illustrate both the strengths and limitations of law to protect prisoners. During the First World War, all parties wanted to follow the war but disagreed about what it required. As a result, conduct deteriorated during the war. In the Second World War, some parties wanted to follow the law while others rejected it, resulting in great differences in conduct across theaters. Practical issues also limited the ability of the parties to control abuses of prisoners of war.


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