Smithsonian Journeys Experts
Bob Smolik is a veteran diplomat and scholar. He worked around the world at U.S. Embassies, looking behind the scenes at how local politics, economics, and societies work -- or don’t. His expertise as Diplomat in Residence at the University of Michigan is in economics and trade, as well as in UN human rights and NATO security issues. As an economic diplomat he worked to open foreign markets to U.S. trade and investment on a fair and equal basis. As political advisor to U.S. military commanders in Africa and Europe, he worked on conflict mediation. He serves as ambassador of American society and culture, helping Washington to understand the political and economic dynamics of other nations. As an international lecturer on anti-corruption and good governance, he worked in over 30 countries throughout Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. Bob holds graduate degrees from Berkeley and Harvard, an undergraduate degree from Cornell, and he is fluent in five Romance languages. He engages audiences with passion and expertise, offering a look behind the scenes at how foreign cultures view the world.