October 21, 2010
Former Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs and Atlantic Council Board Director Marc Grossman encourages the Obama Administration to view the bureaucratic challenge of managing the upcoming NATO, U.S.-EU and OSCE summits as an opportunity to create a more coherent, strategic transatlantic relationship that maximizes the capabilities of all three organizations.
October 20, 2010
By Nicholas Burns, Professor of the Practice of Diplomacy and International Politics, Harvard Kennedy School
The economic, political, and military rise of India is reshaping world politics and promises to make India both a true global power and one of the most important bilateral partners of the United States. This report, authored by former Deputy Secretary of State Richard L. Armitage, former Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Nicholas Burns and CNAS Senior Fellow Richard Fontaine – and endorsed by over 20 esteemed foreign policy experts - provides a blueprint for the path forward for this critical relationship.
September 28, 2010
By Gabe Chan, Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, Laura Diaz Anadon, Assistant Professor of Public Policy; Associate Director, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program; Co-PI, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, Melissa Chan, Former Research Fellow, Energy Research, Development, Demonstration & Deployment Policy Project, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, January 2009–December 2010 and Audrey Lee, Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2009–2011
There is uncertainty about the ex-ante returns to research, development, and demonstration programs in the United States on carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) technology. To quantify this uncertainty, we conducted a written expert elicitation of thirteen experts in fossil power and CCS technologies from the government, academia, and the private sector. We asked experts to provide their recommended budget and allocation of RD&D funds by specific fossil power and CCS technology and type of RD&D activity (i.e. basic research, applied research, pilot plants, and demonstration plants) for the United States....On average, experts estimated that if their recommended RD&D portfolio was implemented, the capital cost of new coal plants with CCS in 2030 would decrease by 10% in addition to the cost reductions/increases that would occur by 2030 through non-public RD&D related factors.
"U.S. Interagency Regional Foreign Policy Implementation: A Survey of Current Practice and an Analysis of Options for Improvement"
By Robert S. Pope, Former Research Fellow, International Security Program, 2009–2010
The United States has a complex, multi-agency structure to plan, synchronize, and execute foreign policy and national security. By statute, the State Department is the lead agency for foreign policy. However, in practice, the much larger and better-funded Department of Defense conducts much of America's foreign policy activity, often with little coordination with the State Department or other relevant agencies. Over the past two decades, the military's Geographic Combatant Commands have taken an increasing lead in planning and executing foreign policy activities around the world. This has often effectively put a military face and voice on America's foreign policy, sometimes to the detriment of broader U.S. goals and relationships. More effective U.S. foreign policy requires greater interagency coordination at all levels and a greater role for the State Department as America's lead agency for foreign policy.
June 2, 2010
"Proliferation of nuclear technologies and the increasing threat that these technologies could be used by dictatorial regimes and forces of international terrorism add urgency to the goal of protecting the international community from the pending nuclear catastrophe," according to senior IMEMO researcher Stanislav Ivanov.
By Joseph S. Nye, Harvard University Distinguished Service Professor
Power depends upon context, and the rapid growth of cyber space is an important new context in world politics. The low price of entry, anonymity, and asymmetries in vulnerability means that smaller actors have more capacity to exercise hard and soft power in cyberspace than in many more traditional domains of world politics. The largest powers are unlikely to be able to dominate this domain as much as they have others like sea or air. But cyberspace also illustrates the point that diffusion of power does not mean equality of power or the replacement of governments as the most powerful actors in world politics.
April 19, 2010
By Hassan Abbas, Former Senior Advisor, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
Despite comparatively progressive forces taking control of Pakistan's North-West Frontier Province (NWFP) after success in the February 2008 provincial elections, stability remains elusive and the law and order situation has gradually deteriorated, raising important questions about the correlation between politics in the province and the nature and extent of militancy there. This essay investigates how different political and religious forces have influenced the state of affairs in the province in recent years.
April 8, 2010
By Chuck Freilich, Senior Fellow, International Security Program
"...[G]lobal American efforts to minimize the threat of nuclear terrorism might be of significant indirect benefit for Israel. These efforts include, inter alia: heightened diplomacy to make better international use of existing diplomatic tools and to adopt new ones; intensified pressure on states to deny terrorists assistance and sanctuary; improvements in control over nuclear facilities, stockpiles and personnel; strengthening the NPT; heightened international cooperation regarding border security, export controls, intelligence sharing, and interdiction; and a variety of covert operations."
The following study is an analysis of in what ways, and to what extent, there are lessons to be learned from the relatively successful Northern Ireland peace process of the late 1990s that can be applied to the currently stagnant Israeli-Palestinian peace process. Our findings, based on more than one year of primary research and interviews with dozens of government officials and participants in the Northern Irish peace process, indicate that there are indeed a number of general lessons in peacemaking and conflict resolution from the Northern Ireland experience that should inform future approaches to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Chief among them are the importance of political leadership, an inclusive negotiation framework, a strong public desire for peace, active U.S. involvement, the internationalization of the peace process, economic gains, and good timing. In addition to exploring how many of these lessons could –and should—be applied in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and in recognition of the importance of Irish-American support for the peace process in Northern Ireland, this study also explores the normative role of the Palestinian and Israeli diasporas, as well as the Irish-American community, in helping Israelis and Palestinians achieve a lasting peace of their own.
This report was commissioned by the OECD MENA Investment Programme. It considers the current supply of human capital in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and identifies key challenges to maximizing the quality of, and returns to, human capital in the region. It finds three areas critical to improving the quality of human capital in MENA including: spending more efficiently on education, strengthening transition systems between levels and types of schooling and emphasizing the development of soft skills development among students. The report also examines international best practices in human capital development including developing national qualification systems, monitoring schools, training and evaluating teachers, curriculum design, vocational training, and other aspects of the national education system.