Thomas W. Simons, Jr.

Thomas W. Simons, Jr.

Visiting Scholar

U.S. Foreign Service Officer (1963-1998); U.S. Ambassador to Poland (1990-1993) and Pakistan (1996-1998)

Areas of Expertise


Thomas W. Simons, Jr., is a 2023-2024 visiting scholar at the Davis Center, with a B.A. from Yale and an M.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard. During a 35-year U.S. Foreign Service career he specialized in East-West relations, including service in Warsaw, Moscow, and Bucharest and as deputy assistant secretary of state responsible for Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union (1986-1989). During the 1990s he was U.S. ambassador to Poland, coordinator of U.S. assistance to the newly independent states of the former Soviet Union, and U.S. ambassador to Pakistan. Simons is the author of dozens of articles on the European East, Eurasia, and the Subcontinent, and of four books, including Eurasia’s New Frontiers: Young States, Old Societies, Open Futures (Cornell, 2008). He has taught at Brown, Stanford, Cornell, and in Harvard’s Government Department (including courses on “Post-Communist Islam,” “Islam in Central and South Asia: Comparative Hegemonies and Liberations,” and “Post-Communist Central Asia and the Caucasus: History, Political Economy, Religion.” He has also taught a course on modern East European and Soviet history at Vienna’s Institute for Human Sciences. Islam in Eurasia. A Policy Volume, which he edited, was published by the Davis Center in 2015.