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Jendayi Frazer

Adjunct Senior Fellow for Africa Studies

Expertise

Africa; Africa policy, U.S. foreign policy, regional security affairs, conflict resolution, civil-military relations, international development policy and governance, political development.

Bio

Jendayi Frazer is adjunct senior fellow for Africa studies at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). Frazer was a distinguished public service professor at Carnegie Mellon University from 2009 to 2014, where she was on the faculty of Heinz College’s School of Public Policy and Management. Her research focused on strengthening regional security cooperation and economic and political integration in Africa. She was the director of Carnegie Mellon's Center for International Policy and Innovation (CIPI), which focuses on utilizing technology and applying innovative solutions to core issues of development and governance in Africa. The author of and contributor to a number of articles, journals, and books, she is the co-editor of Preventing Electoral Violence in Africa (2011), which grows out of her work with CIPI.

Frazer served as the U.S. assistant secretary of state for African affairs from 2005 to 2009. She was special assistant to the president and senior director for African affairs at the National Security Council from 2001 until her swearing-in as the first woman U.S. ambassador to South Africa in 2004. She previously served in government from 1998 to 1999 as a CFR International Affairs Fellow, first at the Pentagon as a political-military planner with the Joint Chiefs of Staff, working on West Africa during Nigeria’s transition to civilian rule, and then as director for African affairs at the National Security Council, working on Central and East Africa. Frazer was also an assistant professor of public policy at the Harvard Kennedy School and assistant professor at the University of Denver’s Graduate School of International Studies.

She has been awarded the Distinguished Service Medal, the highest award bestowed by the secretary of state in recognition of her public service. In 2010, she was given the distinction of Dame Grand Commander in the Humane Order of African Redemption by Liberian president Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. She was also honored with the 2008 Distinguished Leadership Award from the African Presidential Archives & Research Center at Boston University.

Ambassador Frazer received her BA in political science and African and Afro-American studies, MA in international policy studies and international development education, and PhD in political science, all from Stanford University.

Featured Publications

Book

Preventing Electoral Violence in Africa

A practitioner's guide providing firsthand accounts and lessons from scholars and political and civic leaders in the field, with the aim of expanding the dialogue "to ensure free and fair elections in which all of Africa's people can safely exercise their democratic rights."

See more in Elections; Africa (sub-Saharan)

All Publications

Ask CFR Experts

Will the Obama administration show a greater interest in Africa in the second term?

Asked by Nuno Halpern, from West Sussex

The Obama administration is demonstrating a renewed interest in African economic partnerships after largely ignoring the continent during the president's first term. During his summer 2013 trip to Africa, President Obama articulated a policy focus on energy and business ventures. He announced that the United States would aim to expand sub-Saharan Africans' access to electricity and committed $7 billion over five years to the "Power Africa" initiative. He also vowed to send more trade missions to Africa and invite African leaders to a U.S. summit in 2014.

Read full answer

See more in Africa (sub-Saharan); United States; Politics and Strategy

Book

Preventing Electoral Violence in Africa

A practitioner's guide providing firsthand accounts and lessons from scholars and political and civic leaders in the field, with the aim of expanding the dialogue "to ensure free and fair elections in which all of Africa's people can safely exercise their democratic rights."

See more in Elections; Africa (sub-Saharan)

Interview

Ending Ivory Coast's Stand-Off

Jendayi Frazer interviewed by Aimee Rawlins

Conflict in Ivory Coast appears to be nearing a head, with internationally recognized presidential winner Alassane Ouattara poised to triumph. But CFR's Jendayi Frazer notes that inaction by the Security Council is "hypocrisy," particularly in light of its stance on Libya.

See more in Ivory Coast; Conflict Prevention

Article

Reflections on U.S. Policy in Africa, 2001–2009

Author: Jendayi Frazer
Fletcher Forum of World Affairs

Jendayi Frazer provides a retrospective of U.S.-African relations during the George W. Bush Administration, where she notes that more wars were ended, more successful elections were held, more sustained growth was achieved, and more lives were saved from pandemic diseases than during any previous U.S. presidency.

See more in Africa (sub-Saharan); Politics and Strategy; United States

CFR Events

Scarcity and Security in Africa

Speakers:

Jendayi Frazer, Distinguished Service Professor, Carnegie Mellon University; Adjunct Senior Fellow for Africa Studies, Council on Foreign Relations, Juergen Voegele, Director, Agriculture and Environmental Services, World Bank, Gary Weir, Chief Historian, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency

Presider:

Harry G. Broadman, Chief Economist; Leader, Emerging Markets Practice, PricewaterhouseCoopers
March 20, 2013 2:00-3:00 p.m.

This meeting is on the record.

Read ListenWatch

Kenya's Elections

Speakers:

Jendayi Frazer, Adjunct Senior Fellow for Africa Studies, Council on Foreign Relations, Joel D. Barkan, Senior Associate, Africa Program, Center for Strategic and International Studies

Presider:

Anya Schmemann, Director, Editorial Strategy, Studies Program and Director, Task Force Program, Council on Foreign Relations
March 5, 2013

This meeting is on the record.

Read Listen

Preventing Conflict in Sudan

Speaker:

Jendayi Frazer, Adjunct Senior Fellow for Africa Studies, Council on Foreign Relations

Moderator:

Irina A. Faskianos, Vice President, National Program & Outreach, Council on Foreign Relations
September 27, 2012 12:00-1:00 p.m. - (ET)

This meeting is on the record.

Listen

Africa as a Frontier Market

Speaker:

Obiageli Ezekwesili, Vice President, World Bank Africa Region

Presider:

Jendayi Frazer, Adjunct Senior Fellow for Africa Studies, Council on Foreign Relations
January 23, 2012

This meeting is on the record.

Read ListenWatch

Implications of Famine for East Africa

Speakers:

Jendayi Frazer, Adjunct Senior Fellow for Africa Studies, Council on Foreign Relations, EJ Hogendoorn, Project Director, Horn of Africa, International Crisis Group

Presider:

Reed Kramer, CEO and Cofounder, AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com)
October 4, 2011 12:00-12:30 p.m. - Lunch Meeting
12:30-1:30 p.m. - Meeting

This meeting is on the record.

ListenWatch

Press/Panels

Article

Ex-Im Bank Key to Economic Diplomacy

The Ex-Im Bank is a necessary tool to involve American companies in emerging market growth and deepen economic ties. Jendayi Frazer discusses this further for the GE Ideas Lab.

Video Interview

Kenyan Al-Shabab Terrorists

Jendayi Frazer's interview on "Charlie Rose" discussing al-Shabab, the Somalian terrorist group responsible for the massacre in Nairobi, Kenya.

Watch

Video Interview

Jendayi Frazer Discusses Kenyan Elections with PBS Newshour

Dr. Jendayi Frazer recently sat down with Gwen Ifill on PBS Newshour to discuss the March 4 Presidential elections in Kenya and provided analysis of international response to the election of incoming president Uhuru Kenyatta in an extremely close contest. She discussed the implications of this election for U.S. policy, as Kenyatta and his running mate are scheduled to face charges before International Criminal Court (ICC) for their alleged roles in inciting violence following the 2007 elections in which more than one thousand people were killed and thousands more displaced.

Watch

Video Interview

Kenya Decides: The 2013 Presidential Election

Jendayi Frazer participated in a panel discussion on the 2013 presidential elections in Kenya at the Brookings Institution, as part of the event "Kenya Decides: The 2013 Presidential Election."

Listen

Radio Interview

U.S. Joins Hunt For Brutal Warlord In Africa

Jendayi Frazer's NPR interview, discussing the Obama administration dispatch of 100 special forces to Uganda to help pursue Joseph Kony, the leader of the Lord's Resistance Army. 

Listen