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Cathryn Clüver

Mailing address

One Brattle Square 519

Cathryn Clüver

Executive Director, The Future of Diplomacy Project

Telephone: (617) 496-0104



Cathryn Clüver is the founding Executive Director of the Future of Diplomacy Project at the Harvard Kennedy School (HKS), which examines the challenges to negotiation and statecraft in the 21st century. She is also the Executive Director of the India and South Asia Program at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at HKS. Her areas of expertise include EU-US relations – including trade and security policy – and digital public policy in urban and national contexts.

In her current role, she examines negotiation practice, international conflict mitigation and the impact of technology and communication on diplomatic and non-governmental actors and spearheads the Project's Metro Diplomacy Initiative, looking at the international role of cities. In this capacity, she has advised foreign ministries and international organizations across the globe on questions of digital strategy and institutional reform and has served as an expert panelist including at the Aspen Institute, the Heinrich Boell Foundation, the Mercator Foundation and the Alpbach Forum and at international academic conferences from Bahrain to Toronto.

She served on the management team of the European Policy Centre in Brussels, where she was the Deputy Editor of its public policy journal, Challenge Europe and the think tank’s Communications Director, before joining Roland Berger Strategy Consultants as Senior Journalist and consultant in 2005. There, she worked on public policy issues (demographic change, urban competitiveness, green energy) and advised both the consultancy’s Chinese and French offices on branding and communication strategies. In 2009 she served in the second Bloomberg mayoral administration, where she implemented an online program for New York City's 1.8 million limited-English-proficiency migrants to access essential public services.

Formerly an international broadcast journalist, she looks back on a ten-year career in international journalism during which she covered global affairs, most notably EU politics, business and economics in the aftermath of September 11th, working as a producer and writer for CNN-International based in Atlanta and London.

She provides expert commentary in English, German and French on transatlantic relations, German and US foreign and security policy, radicalization and immigration policy and on inequality and urban development for news outlets including Al Jazeera, ABC radio, Wall Street Journal radio and on German television, radio and print publications, including in the Frankfurter Allgemeine ZeitungInternationale PolitikThe European, Die Welt, Die Presse (Austria) and on ARD and PHOENIX and writes regularly for Atlantic Monthly's Quartz

Cathryn holds a Masters Degree in Public Administration (MPA) from the Harvard Kennedy School, where she was a Hauser Fellow in Nonprofit Management and recipient of the Donald K. Price award for academic excellence and community service. She is a graduate of the London School of Economics, where she received a Masters Degree in European Studies and of Brown University, where she completed her undergraduate degree with honors in International Relations and French Civilization.

Cathryn is an elected member of the HKS Alumni Board of Directors, where she is serving a second consecutive four-year term and was named a Truman National Security Fellow in 2011. For five years she has taught at the Albright Institute at Wellesley College and in 2014 was named a Munich Young Leader for the Munich Security Conference. In 2012 she was appointed to the Advisory Council of Georgetown University's BMW Center for German and European Studies.  In 2016 she was named to the Brussels-based Board of the European Committee on Leadership in Science, Innovation and Cultural Diplomacy (EL-CSID).



By Date



November 28, 2016

Ambassador David Saperstein talks TPP, ISIL, and the next administration

Event Report

By Cathryn Clüver, Executive Director, The Future of Diplomacy Project


David Saperstein, U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for Religious Freedom, spoke on Monday, November 14th at the Harvard Kennedy School on “U.S. Efforts to Promote Religious Freedom Abroad.” In a wide-ranging discussion moderated by Future of Diplomacy Project Executive Director Cathryn Clüver, the diplomat and rabbi explained the importance of religion and human rights as part of an integrated approach to foreign policy.



Benn Craig.

September 27, 2016

Conversations in Diplomacy: Radoslaw Sikorski

Media Feature

By Cathryn Clüver, Executive Director, The Future of Diplomacy Project

In this installment of “Conversations in Diplomacy," the Future of Diplomacy Project's Executive Director, Cathryn Clüver, speaks with Radoslaw Sikorski, Poland's former Minister of Foreign Affairs.



Jon Chase

September 20, 2016

What Russia wants


By Cathryn Clüver, Executive Director, The Future of Diplomacy Project

Putin and his government seek respect, stability from next U.S. administration, panel says.



January 15, 2016

"Political Leadership in the Digital Age"


By Cathryn Clüver, Executive Director, The Future of Diplomacy Project

In a new article for the German Council on Foreign Relations' IP-Die Zeitschrift (IP-Journal) titled “Political Leadership in the Digital Age,” Future of Diplomacy Project Executive Director Cathryn Clüver evaluates how German foreign policy actors have failed to respond adequately to the rapid changes instigated by the information technology revolution.



October 29, 2015

"Germany Is No Longer Indifferent"


By Cathryn Clüver, Executive Director, The Future of Diplomacy Project

Cathryn A. Cluver, Executive Director of the Future of Diplomacy Project was a Delegate to the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) Manama Dialogue in Manama, Bahrain from October 30 - November 1, 2015. Germany's Minister of Defense, Ursula von der Leyen, participated in the talks, alongside the President of Egypt, the Foreign Ministers of Saudi Arabia, the UK and Jordan, among others. In advance of the meeting, Cluver shared her reflections on Germany as an emergent diplomatic power in the Gulf Region, as the country's foreign minister, the Chancellor and the Minister of Defense engaged in intensive "shuttle diplomacy" ahead of the first rounds of Syria talks in Vienna.



Michael Kappeler, EPA

February 16, 2015

Merkel's Moment of Power and Partnership with America is Right Now


By Cathryn Clüver, Executive Director, The Future of Diplomacy Project

The Future of Diplomacy Project Executive Director, Cathryn Clüver, writes about German leadership and the chance for increased U.S.-German partnership in the face of multiple crises. In this article for Quartz, Clüver argues that dramatic events unfurling around TTIP, ISIS, and Ukraine could spell the "start of a turning tide" in U.S.-German relations under the guidance of "the most powerful woman in the world," German Chancellor Angela Merkel.



September 7, 2014

21st Century Diplomacy


By Cathryn Clüver, Executive Director, The Future of Diplomacy Project

Cathryn Clüver examines how technology has changed the way diplomacy works, especially in the U.S. Clüver argues, specifically, that Germany should assume a leading role in deploying digital diplomacy to shape foreign policy both domestically and in the Eurozone as a whole.



Sharon Wilke

February 25, 2014

Diplomatic Correspondent Anne Gearan Assesses Secretary Kerry's First Year in Office

Event Report

By Cathryn Clüver, Executive Director, The Future of Diplomacy Project

Speaking as a guest of the Future of Diplomacy Project’s Women and International Reporting series, Anne Gearan, Diplomatic Correspondent from The Washington Post led a discussion on U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry's first 365 days in office.




December 17, 2013

The most victorious woman in Germany right now isn’t Angela Merkel

Op-Ed, Quartz

By Cathryn Clüver, Executive Director, The Future of Diplomacy Project

Cathryn Cluver, Executive Director, Future of Diplomacy Project, evaluates the state of German politics in the wake of elections.



December 5, 2013

Nepali Ambassador Visits Harvard

Event Report

By Cathryn Clüver, Executive Director, The Future of Diplomacy Project

Only two weeks after national elections in Nepal, the country’s Ambassador to the US, Dr. Shankar P. Sharma, addressed an audience of Nepali ex-patriots, Harvard Kennedy School students and expert faculty at a presentation jointly hosted by the Kennedy School’s India and South Asia Program, the South Asia Institute and the Center for Public Leadership in an “off-the-record” presentation on December 3, 2013.

Events Calendar

We host a busy schedule of events throughout the fall, winter and spring. Past guests include: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, former Vice President Al Gore, and former Soviet Union President Mikhail Gorbachev.