Adam Isacson

Still trying to understand Latin America, my own country, and why so few consequences are intended. These views are not necessarily my employer’s.

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The day ahead: September 18, 2020

I’m only reachable in the late afternoon due to meetings. (How to contact me)

I’ve got 2 meetings with congressional staff, and 3 meetings with NGO coalitions, from mid-morning to mid-afternoon, which will make me pretty unresponsive for much of the day.

The day ahead: September 17, 2020

I’m most reachable in the afternoon. (How to contact me)

Getting a late start because I worked late last night. I’ve got a long-ish media interview in the morning, a border coalition meeting in the early afternoon, and an event at the end of the day. I should be at my desk the most in the afternoon, if needed.

The day ahead: September 16, 2020

I’m most reachable in the morning and late afternoon. (How to contact me)

I’ve got two internal planning meetings and a lot of writing to do, some of it to plan future border work, some of it on the situation in Colombia. I plan to be at my desk well into the evening trying to finish all of that.

The day ahead: September 15, 2020

I should be reachable much of the day. (How to contact me)

Nothing on the calendar today for some reason. Which is fine—I spent more than 4 hours yesterday on an article about the unrest in Colombia, which should show up soon on the World Politics Review website. I hope to move a few projects ahead today and should be at my desk all day.

The day ahead: September 14, 2020

I should be reachable in the afternoon. (How to contact me)

I’m in internal meetings all morning, but at my desk this afternoon. Last week I had a couple of events and a few writing deadlines; this week is not as hectic, but my communications inboxes are bursting. I’ll be spending much of the day getting back to people.

The day ahead: September 11, 2020

I’ve been hosting an event, and will be hard to reach for the rest of the day. (How to contact me)

I usually post this first thing in the morning, but it’s an unusual day (see below).

Despite the troubling subject matter, I’m delighted with the discussion we just hosted on civil-military relations in Latin America. The panelists were brilliant.

Now that this, last evening’s lecture, and a few other writing deadlines are in the past, I plan to move more slowly for the rest of the day. And for a good reason: this, September 11, 2020, is my 50th birthday.

The family and I will be masking up and going to a fancy restaurant later, and in the meantime I want to catch up on the news (you’ll notice I haven’t posted any links since Wednesday) and my backlog of e-mail and whatsapps.

The day ahead: September 10, 2020

I’m sort of available today, but may not respond immediately. (How to contact me)

I’m giving a lecture this evening (and having lunch with faculty mid-day) virtually at Dickinson College—the original plan was to travel to Carlisle, Pennsylvania to do this last March, but the event was an early casualty of COVID-19. My talk will be livestreamed.

Right now, my notes and slides are a mess and I need to take some time to tighten them up. So while I’ve got an eye on the ongoing disturbances over police abuses in Bogotá, I may not respond immediately to messages.

We’re hosting an event tomorrow about civil-military relations in Latin America (it will be in Spanish). RSVP today and join us at 11:00AM U.S. eastern time.

The day ahead: September 9, 2020

I’ll be difficult to contact today. (How to contact me)

I’m on a writing deadline this morning, then starting in the late morning I have two internal planning meetings, two discussions with groups of students, and a conversation with State Department personnel. I also need to finish preparing a lecture I’m giving tomorrow evening and an event we’re hosting Friday, so it’s going to be a long day.

The day ahead: September 7, 2020

Today is a national holiday in the United States. (How to contact me)

Today is Labor Day in the United States, and now that I’ve read through the news in Latin America from the weekend, I’m going off the clock. I’ve got a list of household projects we need to work on, so I’ll be hard to reach.

The day ahead: September 4, 2020

I’m in meetings from late morning to late afternoon. (How to contact me)

From a Colombia media interview to two border/migration coalition meetings to check-ins with colleagues, I may be in solid meetings from about 11:00 to 4:00 and difficult to contact during that time.

The day ahead: September 3, 2020

I’m mostly reachable, except for the first half of the afternoon. (How to contact me)

I have a few calls with colleagues between lunchtime and mid-afternoon. Otherwise I should be at my desk, writing an update about the border and doing some research for an upcoming Colombia report.

The day ahead: September 2, 2020

I should be reachable much of the day. (How to contact me)

Except for an internal meeting mid-day, I’m at home doing some writing, putting together an event for next week, and attending to a list of tasks—many of them related to catching up after two weeks’ vacation—that are too small and numerous to detail here. I should be reachable.

The day ahead: September 1, 2020

I’m in meetings during the first half of the afternoon. (How to contact me)

I’m in “meetings” with border groups, then with a colleague with whom I’m organizing an event for next week (details soon). Otherwise I should be reachable.

The day ahead: August 31, 2020

I should be reachable this afternoon. (How to contact me)

I’m back from vacation. It was useful to disconnect from the day-to-day demands of the work, do some reflecting, writing, and lots of reading, and just spend time with the family.

The one “work thing” I did was add two months (about 70 entries) to our timeline of peace and conflict events at colombiapeace.org, which is now up to date through June. I expect to have July and August added by mid-September. This process forces me to skim through all of the articles and reports I’ve saved, adding bits to my research database and knitting together ideas.

The timeline itself has now become an accessible, graphical guide to what happened over the first half of the year in Colombia’s conflict and peace implementation effort. My favorite feature is that you can click on one of the topics in the right-hand column (“Illicit Crop Eradication,” “U.S. Policy,” “Transitional Justice” etc.) and get a briefing about just that issue.

I have an early doctor appointment—this should be the last check-up on the wrist I broke in June, which I’d say is about 95 percent recovered (it’s still hard to do a push-up). Then, a weekly all-hands staff meeting. I should be reachable all afternoon while I dig out all of my unanswered communications from the past two weeks, take care of any urgent tasks that are bound to arise from that, and add some routine website updates.

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