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September 24, 2020

United States
Why Does the Census Matter?

The U.S. census, one of the few in the world to directly count every resident, is used to distribute political power as well as federal funding. In 2020, it faces complications due to the coronavirus…

Aerial shot suburban LA

September 23, 2020

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 sparked debate about the future of the CDC.

An audience member photographs a slide showing the likeness of the Ebola virus during an Ebola safety presentation by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on November 7, 2014, in Los Angeles.

August 24, 2020

United States
U.S. Disaster Relief at Home and Abroad

The U.S. government responds to scores of disasters each year, coordinating closely with state, local, and foreign partners. However, more frequent and severe storms, fires, and floods are straining …

A person stands, back to the camera, in front of piles and rubbles and a house. The sky is pink and purple from the setting sun.

August 25, 2020

United Nations
The Role of the UN General Assembly

The UN General Assembly hosts a much-watched debate of world leaders each year but has struggled to make its work more substantive. For the first time in the assembly’s seventy-five-year history, lea…

UN Secretary-General speaks at a podium before delegates at the UN headquarters in New York.

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 17, 2020

North Korea
North Korea’s Power Structure

In North Korea, all authority flows from Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un. He has reinstated the party as the central hub to consolidate his power and bring elites to heel.

Pedestrians walk past portraits of Kim Il-sung and Kim Jong-il.

May 15, 2020

State and Local Governments
How the Coronavirus Will Harm State and City Budgets

The coronavirus pandemic is placing enormous budget pressure on state and local governments, threatening deep and potentially lasting cuts to education, infrastructure, and other important investment…

Four people wait in line at an unemployment in Fayetteville, Arkansas, after losing their jobs due to the coronavirus outbreak.

March 10, 2020

Americas
The Organization of American States

The Organization of American States is an important forum for regional diplomacy and has become more assertive in promoting the rule of law, human rights, and fair elections as some states face domes…

A woman holds a Venezuelan national flag reading 'OAS don't leave us alone in the fight' during a march towards the OAS headquarters in Caracas in 2017.

February 19, 2020

Middle East and North Africa
The Arab League

Founded as a loose confederation of states in 1945, the Arab League has struggled to overcome dysfunction and disunity among its members.

Flag of Arab League member states accompany the league's seal

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