Research Projects

Below you will find a chronological list of research projects in the Studies Program. You can search by issue or region by selecting the appropriate category. In addition to this sorting control, you can search for specific subjects within the alphabetical, regional, and issue categories by choosing from the selections in the drop-down menu below.

Each project page contains the name of the project director, a description of the project, a list of meetings it has held, and any related publications, transcripts, or videos.


ExxonMobil Women and Development Series

Director: Rachel B. Vogelstein, Senior Fellow and Director of the Women and Foreign Policy Program
November 20, 2009—Present

The ExxonMobil Women and Development Series explores the ways in which governments, companies, and NGOs can promote economic development by focusing on women. With the generous support of the ExxonMobil, the series has so far examined such topics as women's role as change agents in the aftermath of the financial crisis and the potential of new technologies to promote women's economic empowerment in developing countries. Transcripts, audio, and video recordings of meetings in this series are available below.

Emerging Issues in Africa Roundtable

Director: Michelle D. Gavin, Adjunct Fellow for Africa
May 27, 2008—Present

This roundtable series will meet periodically over the course of 2008 to explore changing political and security dynamics on the African continent, often with a special emphasis on U.S. policy options and responses. Extra effort will be devoted to drawing in new voices and perspectives on critical African issues.

Education for Children of Conflict

Staff: Gene B. Sperling, Senior Fellow for Economic Policy and Director of the Center for Universal Education
September 27, 2007—Present

As part of its research and policy work, the Center focuses on examining how education can be a vital part of a comprehensive humanitarian strategy for conflict, post-conflict and refugee settings. Education can provide a healing and safe place for children of conflict; it can provide a sense of much needed normalcy in a chaotic conflict environment, it can teach non-violence and understanding, and most importantly, it can give young people who have been through the worst misfortune and even horrors, the tools to build a better life for themselves and a better future for their nations. Yet education in emergencies and post-conflict situations too often falls through the cracks; overlooked because it is not seen as “life-saving” or because donors do not trust the governments in which these children live. The Center's work seeks to address this gap by

(a)   studying and promoting best practices and model programs including those standards developed by the INEE, and

(b)   drafting and delivering new analyses and recommendations on international financing of education in conflict situations to major stakeholders including G-8 development agencies, the United Nations, and World Bank

(c)   creating support, understanding and momentum for the design and implementation of high-quality education projects for children of conflict

Education in Conflict and Emergency Situations Roundtable Series

Staff: Gene B. Sperling, Senior Fellow for Economic Policy and Director of the Center for Universal Education
September 1, 2007—Present

This roundtable series focuses on the challenge of funding and managing education in emergency and conflict situations.

Energy Security Group

Chair: William F. Martin
Staff: Judith Kipper
January 1, 1998—Present

The Energy Security Group meets regularly to discuss policy options for the United States, Japan, and the international community on a broad range of energy security issues including nuclear proliferation and energy, global warming, energy supply and demand, and the science and technology which has a direct impact on energy security. The Energy Security Group has been funded by the Japan Atomic and Industrial Forum (JAIF) since 1995. The Forum has established an Energy Security Group in Japan as well.

Emerging Powers in Global Health Governance Roundtable Series

Director: Yanzhong Huang, Senior Fellow for Global Health
November 2011—2013

This roundtable series focuses on the emerging state and non-state actors in global health and their role in a changing governance structure.

This roundtable series is sponsored by the International Institutions and Global Governance Program and made possible by the generous support of the Robina Foundation.

Entrepreneurs and Market Linkages in Conflict and Postconflict Environments

Director: Gayle Tzemach Lemmon, Senior Fellow for Women and Foreign Policy
October 1, 2011—August 30, 2012

Despite myriad challenges, entrepreneurs in conflict and postconflict environments have succeeded in building viable businesses that stabilize families and communities and foster economic growth on a national level. While the importance of entrepreneurship has been widely discussed, little is known and has been written about what works in terms of linking entrepreneurs with markets in these environments.

This project seeks to fill that gap by investigating efforts underway in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Liberia, among others, and exploring ways to improve market linkages for entrepreneurs. It will focus on new and growing firms, as well as examine firms that have developed into large-scale enterprises. It will also analyze the unique barriers facing female entrepreneurs and suggest ways the international community can best focus its efforts to address challenges seen by entrepreneurs in conflict and post-conflict environments.

This project is made possible by the generous support of the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.

Entrepreneurship and Economic Development

Entrepreneurship and Economic Development is a major research area of CFR's Civil Society, Markets, and Democracy Initiative. The business environment necessary for entrepreneurship to flourish is closely related to the political environment needed for stable democracy. Problems such as capricious state authority, corruption, and poor education hinder both private enterprise and democratic governance. Entrepreneurship itself can also serve as a potent antidote to excessive state authority. However, the correlation between economic and political freedom is far from exact. The Civil Society, Markets, and Democracy Initiative aims to understand how best to promote entrepreneurship and its connection to broader economic growth and democracy. One priority is women’s roles as entrepreneurs and contributions to economic development, especially in post-conflict settings.

Please see below for relevant publications.


Foreign Policy Roundtable

Director: Nicholas X. Rizopoulos, Senior Studies Editor, Council on Foreign Relations
October 1, 1989—January 1, 1997
The Foreign Policy Roundtable is a series of monthly seminars, with a different author presenting a discussion paper, drawn from a recent article or other work-in-progress, on an issue of current concern to U.S. foreign policy. The seminar group consists primarily of journalists, editors, and a sprinkling of academics and Council staff. The roundtable has been meeting regularly under this format since late 1988. During the past year, author/presenters included Leon Sigal, Tozun Bahcheli, Robert Hutchings and Vojtech Mastny.

Functional Issues

The project considers prospects for specific functional areas of cooperation in the context of an expanded alliance, with special attention to U.S.-ROK cooperation in the areas of nuclear energy and nonproliferation, international development assistance, and climate change and green growth.


Global Health Norm Setting Roundtable Series

Director: Yanzhong Huang, Senior Fellow for Global Health
October 23, 2012—Present

Global health governance in the 21st century has been characterized by the rise of new actors, new problems, and new processes. While a lot of attention has been given to the negotiation of rules and norms to address health challenges at the global level, we still do not know much about how international health norms and rules are set at the regional level.This roundtable series will focuses on how global health rules, norms, and standards are established and how they should be developed in the future.

This roundtable series is sponsored by the International Institutions and Global Governance Program and made possible by the generous support of the Robina Foundation.