Greenberg Center for Geoeconomic Studies Publications Archive

Teaching Note

War by Other Means: Geoeconomics and Statecraft

Authors: Robert D. Blackwill and Jennifer M. Harris

Today, nations increasingly carry out geopolitical combat through economic means. Policies governing everything from trade and investment to energy and exchange rates are wielded as tools to win diplomatic allies, punish adversaries, and coerce those in between. Not so in the United States, however. America still too often reaches for the gun over the purse to advance its interests abroad. The result is a playing field sharply tilting against the United States.

See more in Global; Global Governance


The Trump-Sanders China Syndrome

Authors: Benn Steil and Emma Smith
Wall Street Journal

Benn Steil’s op-ed in the March 30 edition of the Wall Street Journal, co-authored with Emma Smith, looks at presidential campaign charges that China is engaged in “currency manipulation” to boost net exports.  They show that the aims of China’s pegged exchange rate regime have varied over the past two decades, and have not always been mercantilist. In recent months, with capital flowing out of China at a prodigious rate, its interventions have been to keep its currency up—not down.  Launching a trade war with China over currency management, as Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders intend, would therefore be nonsensical—as well as damaging to U.S. interests.

See more in China; United States; Monetary Policy; Elections


India's Landmark WTO Challenge to U.S.

Author: Edward Alden
Nikkei Asian Review

The government of India filed suit on March 3 in the World Trade Organization (WTO) seeking to overturn a new U.S. tax on high-skilled migrants that India says discriminates against its citizens and would damage some of its most successful companies. The case marks the first time that a country's immigration laws have been challenged using the rules of a trade agreement, writes CFR’s Edward Alden.

See more in India; United States; Trade; International Organizations and Alliances

Other Report Anticipating and Avoiding Global Food Price Crises

Anticipating and Avoiding Global Food Price Crises

Volatile food prices have become a frequent feature of the global economy. The Maurice R. Greenberg Center for Geoeconomic Studies and the International Institutions and Global Governance program at the Council on Foreign Relations convened a score of experts to examine the consequences of past, and future, spikes in global food prices.

See more in Global; Food Security


Energy Prices and Crisis Risks

Author: Robert Kahn

Robert Kahn testified before the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, describing the crisis risks generated by persistently low oil and gas prices. He argued that the risks are especially acute for energy exporters such as Venezuela and Nigeria, and that such countries need sizable policy adjustments in the immediate future.

See more in Americas; Global; Oil; Financial Crises

Other Report

Global Economics Monthly March 2016

Author: Robert Kahn

Steven A. Tananbaum Senior Fellow for International Economics Robert Kahn argues that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) deserves credit for effectively responding to the global and European financial crises. However, the institution will face different and potentially more difficult challenges in the next five years as it struggles to come to terms with a changing international power order and lending rules that are not well suited to address future crises.

See more in Global; Economics


Selling America Short

Authors: Max Boot and Benn Steil
Weekly Standard

Max Boot and Benn Steil  argue that a Trump presidency would undermine the liberal international order which the United States painstakingly constructed and cultivated after the Second World War. This would, they believe, gravely damage America’s security and standing in the world.

See more in United States; Elections

Foreign Affairs Article

The IMF’s Next Five Years

Author: Robert Kahn

In the next five years, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will face new challenges as it struggles to come to terms with a rapidly changing global marketplace and with lending rules poorly suited for the crises the institution will likely face. These challenges will force the IMF to scrutinize and adjust its lending rules. A broader issue is also at play: financial markets are becoming bigger more quickly than the institution’s resources are, and IMF rescue alone may be insufficient in the future . How the financing burden is shared with other official creditors will help determine whether the fund is an effective leader of the global effort to prevent and resolve economic crises in the coming decades.


See more in Global; International Finance; International Organizations and Alliances


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