Policy Research


We conduct research in Washington where policy is made and travel around the world to examine the reality of those policies on the ground. Our delegations and investigative missions enable CIP to expose policies that may be counterproductive to U.S. interests and harmful to citizens of countries on the receiving end of those policies.

See below for links to our policy research work.

Country Profile: U.S. Security Assistance to Tunisia

By Security Assistance Monitor, Project on Middle East Democracy

Apr-21-2015 | Policy Brief

Tunisia is widely credited with initiating the wave of revolutions that swept the Arab world in 2011. Following the ouster of former President Ben Ali, the country navigated an extremely difficult political transition that culminated in the formation of a democratically elected government under a new constitution in December 2014... Read More »

Fighting for Peace: The Tricky Business of Using Greater Force in UN Peace Operations

By Nicole Ball

Mar-04-2015 | Policy Brief

The increased political willingness by UN member states to authorise the use of force has developed well ahead of their risk tolerance and matching capabilities... Read More »

Lessons from Burundi's Security Sector Reform Process

By Nicole Ball

Nov-17-2014 | Policy Brief

Security sector reform (SSR) is increasingly put forward as a solution for a broad spectrum of African states facing security challenges. Yet, for a variety of reasons, there are relatively few examples of successful SSR implementation... Read More »

Iran Deal Should Be First Step Towards a More Secure Middle East

By William D. Hartung

Jul-14-2015 | Article

Once the Iran nuclear deal is in place, the remaining, serious security issues in the region should be addressed diplomatically, not by pouring more arms into an area already wracked by conflict... Read More »

The U.S. Shouldn't Export Colombia's Drug War "Success"

By Sarah Kinosian, Lisa Haugaard, John Lindsay-Poland

Jul-08-2015 | Article

The U.S. is paying Colombia to train security forces in Central America, without tracking whether this is doing good or causing harm. It's time for authorities to start asking hard questions about what lessons Colombia's military is exporting abroad... Read More »

The Security Aid Blackout: How Cloudy U.S. Security Assistance Information Hampers Effective Progress

By Abigail Poe, Colby Goodman

Jul-08-2015 | Article

Without increased transparency, sound decision-making on security assistance is severely limited both in the United States and recipient countries. Pentagon efforts to reduce security threats and the resulting benefits to development are also stymied.... Read More »

US Policy on Syria: War or Diplomacy?

By Carl Conetta

Sep-23-2013 | Fact Sheet

A selection of critical views and proposals on the way forward with Syria... Read More »

Four Decades of US Defense Spending

By Carl Conetta, Charles Knight,

Jan-25-2013 | Fact Sheet

A one page review and assessment of the change in US defense spending over 40 years... Read More »

USA and Allies Outspend Potential Rivals on Military by Four-to-One; America Carries Much of the Defense Burden for its Allies

By Carl Conetta

Jul-17-2012 | Fact Sheet

In this fact sheet Carl Conetta looks U.S. military spending compared to that of other countries... Read More »