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Jennifer M. Harris

Senior Fellow

Expertise

U.S. foreign policy; economic statecraft; energy and climate security; state capitalism; U.S.-China relations; U.S. competitiveness.

Bio

Jennifer M. Harris is senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. Prior to joining the Council, Harris was a member of the policy planning staff at the U.S. Department of State, responsible for global markets, geoeconomic issues, and energy security. In that role, Harris was a lead architect of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's economic statecraft agenda, which launched in 2011. Before joining the State Department, Harris served on the staff of the U.S. National Intelligence Council, covering a range of economic and financial issues.

Her work has appeared in the New York TimesForeign AffairsWashington Quarterly, and the World Economic Forum, among other outlets. A Truman and a Rhodes scholar, she holds degrees in economics and international relations from Wake Forest University (BA) and the University of Oxford (MPhil), and a JD from Yale Law School. Harris is the author of War By Other Means: Geoeconomics and Statecraft, coauthored with Robert Blackwill.

Geoeconomics and Statecraft

From Russia's coercive economic pressure against Ukraine to the steady sums of financing Gulf monarchies have extended to the current Egyptian government to the varied economic penalties China has imposed on nations in its neighborhood, an increasing number of states are waging geopolitics with capital. Many countries today are more likely to air disagreements with the foreign policies of other governments through trade restrictions, or the buying and selling of debt, than through military responses. Despite gaining utility elsewhere in the world, geoeconomic statecraft has diminished in American policymaking in recent decades, a shift insufficiently recognized by both economists and foreign policy strategists. My forthoming book, War By Other Means: Geoeconomics and Statecraft co-authored with Robert Blackwill, outlines what geoeconomics is, why it matters, and how the U.S. government can better utilize this national security tool.

Energy, Economics, and International Security

Energy has long been intimately connected with the global economy and international relations. But rapid changes in the energy landscape, the international economy, and world affairs are challenging many of the existing understandings of how energy influences the world. I lead the project on Energy, Economics, and International Security jointly with Michael Levi. Through research, commissioned papers, and intensive workshops, my contributions aim to better understand the economic and security consequences of changes to the supply, production, and trade of fossil fuels, and policy opportunities that result. My current areas of interest include the United States’ Strategic Petroleum Reserve, global oil and gas subsidies, and the operation of U.S.-based multinational oil companies. Future activities will continue to illuminate and clarify the relationships between energy, economics, and international security, with an eye toward insights that can inform pressing policy decisions.

This project is made possible through the support of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

All Publications

Op-Ed

U.S. Needs New South China Sea Strategy To Contain Beijing

Author: Jennifer M. Harris
Newsweek

On Tuesday, the United Nations Permanent Court of Arbitration issued its final ruling in a landmark case between the Philippines and China over disputed maritime claims in the South China Sea. The object of intense global interest, the three-year-old case has come to serve as a bellwether for the kind of rising power China intends to be.

See more in China; United States; Regional Security

Foreign Affairs Article

The Lost Art of Economic Statecraft

Authors: Robert D. Blackwill and Jennifer M. Harris

Despite boasting the most powerful economy on earth, the United States too often reaches for the gun instead of the purse in its foreign policy. The country has hardly outgrown its need for military force, but over the past several decades, it has increasingly forgotten a tradition that stretches back to the nation’s founding: the use of economic instruments to accomplish geopolitical objectives, a practice we term “geoeconomics.”

See more in United States; Economics

Article

America’s Fatal Flaw in its Competition With China Is Thinking Militarily, Not Economically

Author: Jennifer M. Harris
The WorldPost

Last week, Washington attempted two important policy feats aimed squarely in Beijing’s direction. U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter grabbed headlines by visitingthe South China Sea, after earlier announcing he would scrap a visit to Beijing amid rising tension over territorial disputes in the region.

See more in United States; China; Economics; Military Operations

Op-Ed

Forging a New Check on China

Author: Jennifer M. Harris
U.S. News and World Report

U.S. leaders still haven't quite figured out the right formula for the greatest geopolitical challenge facing the United States this century: managing China's rise. But that may have changed Monday, when President Barack Obama welcomed leaders from the 10 member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations for a two-day summit at Sunnylands in California, the so-called Camp David of the West.

See more in United States; Asia and Pacific; Diplomacy and Statecraft; Regional Security

CFR Events

Meeting ⁄ New York

NY CFR Fellows’ Book Launch Series Guest Event: War by Other Means--Geoeconomics and Statecraft

Speakers Robert D. Blackwill

Henry A. Kissinger Senior Fellow for U.S. Foreign Policy, Council on Foreign Relations 

, Jennifer M. Harris

Senior Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations

, Robert D. Blackwill

Henry A. Kissinger Senior Fellow for U.S. Foreign Policy, Council on Foreign Relations 

, Jennifer M. Harris

Senior Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations


Presiders Richard N. Haass

President, Council on Foreign Relations

, Richard N. Haass

President, Council on Foreign Relations

May 25, 2016 5:30 p.m.-7:15 p.m.


5:30 p.m.—6:00 p.m. Cocktail Reception
6:00 p.m.–6:45 p.m. Discussion
6:45 p.m.–7:15 p.m. Cocktail Reception and Book Signing
*Please note special timing*

May 25, 2016

This meeting is on the record.

Read Listen Watch

Meeting ⁄ Washington

DC Fellow's Book Launch Series: War by Other Means: Geoeconomics and Statecraft

Speakers Robert D. Blackwill

Henry A. Kissinger Senior Fellow for U.S. Foreign Policy, Council on Foreign Relations

, Jennifer M. Harris

Senior Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations

, Robert D. Blackwill

Henry A. Kissinger Senior Fellow for U.S. Foreign Policy, Council on Foreign Relations

, Jennifer M. Harris

Senior Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations


Presiders James M. Lindsay

Senior Vice President, Director of Studies, and Maurice R. Greenberg Chair, Council on Foreign Relations

, James M. Lindsay

Senior Vice President, Director of Studies, and Maurice R. Greenberg Chair, Council on Foreign Relations

May 19, 2016 5:30 p.m.-7:15 p.m.


5:30 p.m.—6:00 p.m. Cocktail Reception 
6:00 p.m.–6:45 p.m. Discussion
6:45 p.m.–7:15 p.m. Cocktail Reception and Book Signing
*Please note special timing*

May 19, 2016

This meeting is on the record.

Read Watch

Press/Panels