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October 13, 2020

North Korea
North Korea’s Military Capabilities

Kim Jong-un has accelerated North Korea’s buildup of nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction, while also modernizing its large conventional force.

Vehicles carry missiles during a military parade in Pyongyang.

September 29, 2020

United States
The Dollar: The World’s Currency

The dollar’s role as the primary reserve currency for the global economy allows the United States to borrow money more easily and impose painful financial sanctions. But some experts say the costs to…

A man counts U.S. dollars at a market in Turkey

August 20, 2020

International Organizations
The IMF: The World’s Controversial Financial Firefighter

The International Monetary Fund, both criticized and lauded for its efforts to promote financial stability, continues to find itself at the forefront of global economic crisis management.

IMF Governors' meeting

June 30, 2020

Sub-Saharan Africa
Africa’s ‘Leaders for Life’

Sub-Saharan Africa is home to many of the world’s longest-ruling heads of state, but civil society and regional blocs may be slowing the trend of extending presidential terms in some areas.

A taxi passes an electoral poster for Cameroonian President Paul Biya in a market in Yaounde.

April 9, 2019

International Organizations
The World Bank Group’s Role in Global Development

Since its founding in 1944, the World Bank has evolved from a lender focused on European reconstruction to the preeminent international institution for economic development and poverty reduction.

KM Asad/NurPhoto via Getty Images

March 12, 2019

United States
Inequality and Tax Rates: A Global Comparison

With economic inequality at an all-time high, some U.S. presidential candidates are proposing dramatic shifts to the U.S. tax code. How have similar plans worked elsewhere in the world?

IRS

March 8, 2019

United States
The U.S. Trade Deficit: How Much Does It Matter?

President Trump has made reducing the U.S. trade deficit a priority, blaming trade deals like NAFTA, but economists disagree over how policymakers should respond.

Chinese steel factory

June 15, 2018

Democratic Republic of Congo
The Cobalt Boom

Demand has skyrocketed for cobalt, focusing attention on its complex and controversial supply chain. The mineral is an important component in lithium-ion batteries, which power everything from electric cars to smartphones.

A man digs through some mine waste searching for leftover cobalt.

February 9, 2018

China
China’s Big Bet on Soft Power

China is believed to spend billions of dollars to boost its international image, but it has yet to see a marked return on its investment in soft power.

An African student practices Shaolin martial arts in Henan Province.

March 3, 2014

Global Governance
The Group of Eight (G8) Industrialized Nations

After more than three decades of existence, the Group of Eight (G8) is struggling to defend its relevance amid criticism of its limited membership and lack of a compliance mechanism.