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May 18, 2021

Health
What Does the CDC Do?

The federal agency has a broad mandate to protect Americans’ health and an expansive global reach. But the COVID-19 pandemic has emerged as one of its most daunting challenges.

The CDC’s Emergency Operations Center is reflected in the glass of a room where staff meet to discuss the Ebola crisis in October 2014.

September 28, 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

January 28, 2020

China
China’s Massive Belt and Road Initiative

China’s colossal infrastructure investments may usher in a new era of trade and growth for economies in Asia and beyond. But skeptics worry that China is laying a debt trap for borrowing governments…

Zhang Peng/LightRocket via Getty Images

January 6, 2020

Trade
How Are Trade Disputes Resolved?

With President Donald Trump launching NAFTA negotiations and criticizing the WTO, international trade dispute forums are under increasing scrutiny.

Dispute Resolution in Trade Agreements

January 11, 2017

Terrorism and Counterterrorism
Colombia’s Civil Conflict

The Colombian government and FARC rebels have signed a historic peace agreement that charts a path to sustainable peace after decades of civil war.

A supporter rallying for a peace agreement between the Colombian government and FARC stands under a banner reading "for peace" during a march in Bogota.

October 5, 2016

Sub-Saharan Africa
Can Malaria Be Eradicated?

A leading killer among diseases is now targeted for eradication by the middle of this century. Efforts to combat malaria are costly and challenging.

A child is given an injection as part of a malaria vaccine trial at a clinic in Kilifi, Kenya.

August 16, 2016

Asia
Building the New Silk Road

The United States and China have developed competing visions for reviving ancient trade routes connecting Asia and Europe. The U.S. diplomatic strategy focuses on Afghanistan, while China hopes to ec…

February 7, 2013

Europe
Germany’s Central Bank and the Eurozone

Germany’s Bundesbank remains an influential actor in eurozone policymaking, and its recent disagreements with the ECB raise concerns about managing the zone’s debt crisis. This Backgrounder explains.

October 17, 2012

Venezuela
Venezuela’s Chávez Wins Fourth Term

Longtime Venezuelan leader Hugo Chávez’s fourth term as president allows for the continuation of his "socialist revolution," but questions over his health remain a wildcard in assessing Venezuela’s f…