Cold War Working Group

On February 27, 2021, doctoral candidates Addison Jensen and Mattie Webb launched the Cold War Working Group (CWWG), a subset of the Center for Cold War Studies and International History (CCWS). The CWWG is a collaborative, graduate student-led group intended to provide a supportive, welcoming environment for graduate students working on or around the Cold War and international histories. This group was founded with three goals in mind: to provide graduate students with a safe space to workshop their works-in-progress, to host honest and open discussions about the job market and career opportunities outside of academia, and to restore the sense of student community that has been sorely missed in the last year of the pandemic. As part of this endeavor, the CWWG will hold a series of virtual events for the winter and spring 2021 quarters and will be adding new content to the CCWS webpage.

Initiatives already in development include:

Writing Workshops: The CWWG invites any graduate student pursuing a topic relevant to the Cold War or international history, broadly defined, to submit a paper, article draft, dissertation chapter, or any other work-in-progress. “Broadly defined” means that submissions covering a wide array of topics—traditional diplomacy, culture, gender, race, ethnicity, religion, science, technology, environment, domestic politics, and so on—would be welcome, as long as they have a connection to the Cold War and/or international history. These workshops will provide members with the opportunity to receive feedback in a supportive environment consisting of their peers (though professors are welcome to attend). Such workshops are also intended to provide a space for graduate students to meet, socialize, and reconnect during this very isolating period in their graduate school careers.

“This Day in Cold War History”: The CWWG is also working to encourage undergraduate involvement in the History department, the CCWS, and public history. The “This Day in Cold War History” short blog posts (intended primarily for undergraduate students, though posts from grad students are welcome), will be centered around dates and events significant to the Cold War. Participants will be offered the chance to write a short post centered around an event specific to the Cold War. Upon review, submissions will be uploaded to the website on the corresponding day (for example, a post dedicated to the launch of Sputnik will be posted on October 4th).

Apart from the writing workshops and “This Day in Cold War History,” the CWWG will explore possibilities for creating dialogue with CCWS alumni and participating in ongoing departmental efforts to help grad students navigate the academic job market and explore nonacademic career options.

Continue to check the space below for details of our upcoming events, workshops, and new blog content! 

For more information about joining the Cold War Working Group, attending a workshop, or being added to the listserv so that you can stay informed of future events, please email Jensen or Webb at and

Cold War Working Group Events

Saturday, April 9, 2022, from 11:00 am to 12:30 pm: Please join us for a workshop discussion of "' A Competition in Brains' : Manpower Policy and the Political Economy of the Cold War, 1945-1962" by Neil Johnson, a doctoral candidate in the UCSB history deparment. See Events for more information.

Saturday, April 24, from 4-5:30 pm: The CWWG is partnering with the UCSB History Department to host "History Beyond the Academy: A Conversation." Join us for a panel discussion with recent graduates from UCSB’s Department of History to learn about their experiences working as historians beyond the Academy. Learn about work in academic administration, the non-profit sector and how to research and produce podcasts. The discussion will be moderated by CWWG co-founders, Addie Jensen and Mattie Webb. Click here for the Zoom link. 

Saturday, April 24, from 2 to 4 pm: Please join us for the second meeting of the CWWG! We will read and discuss a dissertation chapter, "Beyond Desegregation: Waging a Battle Against Apartheid in the South African Workplace," by Mattie Webb, a doctoral candidate in the UCSB history department. You can access Mattie's chapter here.

Saturday, February 27, from 2-4 pm: Please join us for the inaugural meeting of the Cold War Working Group (CWWG)! We will read and discuss a dissertation chapter, "WITCHIEs, Chickies, and Donut Dollies: The Women's Rights Movement and American GIs," by Addie Jensen, a doctoral candidate in the UCSB History department. This workshop is part of a new CCWS initiative, the Cold War Working Group (CWWG), a collaborative, graduate student-led group designed to provide a supportive, welcoming environment for graduate students working on or around the Cold War and international history.