Afghani women protest

FSI Newsroom

FSI scholars offer expert analysis and commentary on contemporary global issues.


Emily Feng

NPR's Emily Feng Recognized as the 2022 Shorenstein Journalism Honoree

At the 2022 Shorenstein Journalism Award, Feng discussed how the challenges of reporting as a foreign correspondent in China are forcing the West to reconfigure its understanding of the country and creating suspicion and mistrust.
Vladimir Putin at a Victory Day rally in Moscow.

Assessing Putin's Invasion of Ukraine

On a new season of the World Class podcast, Michael McFaul discusses recent developments of the war in Ukraine and how those will impact Ukraine's future, Russia's standing in the world, and the responses of the global community.
Corn damaged by drought

Five Questions About Food Security in a Warming World

FSE Director David Lobell explains some of the system-wide challenges — and solutions — to ensuring that people around the world have access to affordable, nutritious food.



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Michael A. McFaul
Ukrainian forces test drive a repaired Russian tank in the Kharkiv region on September 26 2022.

The War in Ukraine Will Continue to Evolve. Here's How.

Commentary / November 28, 2022
Steven Pifer and Francis Fukuyama join Michael McFaul on the World Class podcast to discuss Ukraine’s progress in the war, Crimea’s strategic importance, and the ongoing need for Western support in the conflict.
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The flag of Taiwan flies over a military monunment in Kinmen, Taiwan.

Understanding the Stakes in Taiwan

Commentary / November 4, 2022
Larry Diamond and Oriana Skylar Mastro join Michael McFaul on the World Class podcast to discuss China’s ambitions against Taiwan, and how the U.S. and its allies can deter Beijing.
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CDDRL directors

The Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law Celebrates 20 Years of Global Impact

News / October 31, 2022
The center’s achievements include both informing public discourse about democracy, development, and rule of law, and also educating and training a generation of scholars and leaders who will change the world.
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Vladimir Putin at a Victory Day rally in Moscow.

Assessing Putin's Invasion of Ukraine

Commentary / October 10, 2022
To launch a new season of the World Class podcast, Michael McFaul discusses recent developments of the war in Ukraine and how those will impact Ukraine's future, Russia's standing in the world, and the responses of the global community.
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A delegation from the NATO Parliamentary Assembly visits the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies.

NATO Parliamentary Delegation Joins FSI Scholars for Discussion on Ukraine and Russia

News / October 3, 2022
FSI Director Michael McFaul, Kathryn Stoner, Francis Fukuyama, Scott Sagan, Anna Grzymala-Busse, and Marshall Burke answered questions from the parliamentarians on the conflict and its implications for the future of Ukraine, Russia, and the global community.
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President Ronald Reagan shakes hands with Mikhail Gorbachev.

Reflections on Mikhail Gorbachev's Life from FSI Scholars

News / September 2, 2022
Rose Gottemoeller, Steven Pifer, Francis Fukuyama, and Michael McFaul discuss the complex life and legacy of the last leader of the Soviet Union.
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Larry Diamond, Kathryn Stoner, Erik Jensen and Francis Fukuyama at the opening session of the 2022 Draper Hills Fellows Program

Stanford summer fellowship crafts next generation of global leaders

News / August 23, 2022
The Draper Hills Summer Fellows Program reconvened in person for the first time, bringing budding leaders together with the world’s most influential democracy scholars.
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The 2022 graduating class of the Ford Dorsey Master's in International Policy.

A Return to In-person Graduation for the 2022 Master’s in International Policy Class

News / June 14, 2022
After two years of online ceremonies due to the pandemic, the Ford Dorsey Master’s in International Policy program celebrated with a fully in-person graduation ceremony for the 2022 graduating class.
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President Zelenskky addresses Stanford students and community members via a live video address in the CEMEX auditorium.

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy Calls on Students to Lead as Future Ambassadors in a Special Video Address at Stanford

News / June 1, 2022
Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy spoke to the Stanford community in a special video address about his country’s war against Russia for independence, freedom, and global democracy, which he said requires the continued support of all the people of the free world.
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President Barack Obama at the “Challenges to Democracy in the Digital Information Realm" conference.

Barack Obama Addresses the Intersection of Online Disinformation, Regulation and Democracy at Stanford Event

News / May 3, 2022
At a conference hosted by the Cyber Policy Center and Obama Foundation, former U.S. President Barack Obama delivered the keynote address about how information is created and consumed, and the threat that disinformation poses to democracy.
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Some of the original Ukrainian alumni from the Draper Hills Summer Fellowship gather in Kyiv in 2013.

A History of Unity: A Look at FSI’s Special Relationship with Ukraine

News / April 4, 2022
Since 2005, the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies has cultivated rich academic ties and friendships with Ukrainian scholars and civic leaders as part of our mission to support democracy and development domestically and abroad.
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picture of Ukraine flag background

State Media, Social Media, and the Conflict in Ukraine: What Should the Platforms Do?

News / March 10, 2022
On March 4th, Cyber Policy Center experts and experts in industry gathered to discuss the propaganda battles related to the conflict already in full force.
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map of ukraine

What is Going On Inside Vladimir Putin's Head? 12 Experts Weigh In

Commentary / March 2, 2022
Russian president Vladimir Putin is keeping the world guessing as western intelligence says the invasion he ordered of Ukraine has not been as successful or as swift as he had hoped.
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People gather at the UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, 2021.

Lawmakers are Slowly Warming Up to Policy on Climate Change

News / February 17, 2022
Climate expert Marshall Burke joins the World Class podcast to talk through what’s going right, what’s going wrong, and what more needs to be done to translate data on the climate crisis into meaningful policy.
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Members of the Ukrainian military carry the flag of Ukraine during the 30th anniversary of the country's independence.

What the Ukraine-Russia Crisis Says about the Global Struggle for Democracy

News / January 7, 2022
Former prime minister of Ukraine Oleksiy Honcharuk joins Michael McFaul on the World Class Podcast to analyze Russia's aggression towards Ukraine and how it fits into Vladamir Putin's bigger strategy to undermine democracy globally.
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Chito Gascón

Remembering Chito Gascón

News / October 12, 2021
A member of the inaugural Draper Hills Summer Fellows Program cohort in 2005, Chito died from COVID-19 on October 9, 2021.
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Oleksiy Honcharuk

Oleksiy Honcharuk Appointed the Bernard and Susan Liautaud Visiting Fellow

News / October 7, 2021
Honcharuk, formerly the prime minister of Ukraine, will focus on examining what Western allies can do to support Ukraine in its struggle to thrive as a democracy in Eastern Europe while at Stanford.
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Staff of The World House Project on the stairs of Encina Hall

The World House Project, Inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Vision of a More Just and Peaceful Future, Launches at FSI

News / October 4, 2021
Led by Clayborne Carson, the new project works to realize King's vision of the world as a large house in which "we must learn somehow to live with each other in peace.”
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Screenshot of Draper Hills 2021 opening session

Global Democracy Leaders Gather Virtually for the 2021 Draper Hills Summer Fellowship

News / August 18, 2021
For the next two weeks, Fellows will participate in workshops led by an interdisciplinary team of faculty to study new theories and approaches to democratic development.
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Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya discusses the future of democracy in Belarus with a roundtable of Stanford scholars.

Belarusian Leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya Meets with Stanford Scholars for Roundtable on Democracy in Belarus

News / August 4, 2021
Democratic leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya and her delegation joined an interdisciplinary panel of Stanford scholars and members of the Belarusian community to discuss the future of democracy in Belarus.
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Flags of the United States and Russia

Stanford Experts Weigh In on What to Expect at the Biden-Putin Summit

News / June 14, 2021
Scholars at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies hope that President Joe Biden’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin will lay the groundwork for negotiations in the near future, particularly around nuclear weapons.
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Joe Biden in the Rose Garden

Biden’s Foreign Policy: What We Can Expect for China, Russia and Iran

News / March 17, 2021
On the World Class Podcast, experts discuss how the Biden Administration should navigate three of America’s most challenging bilateral relationships.
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storming of capital 2021

To Support Democracy Abroad, the U.S. Needs To Set Its Own House In Order, says FSI Director Michael McFaul

News / January 14, 2021
Former U.S. ambassador to Russia and Stanford political scientist Michael McFaul recommends that the incoming Biden administration “go big” in its efforts to reaffirm core democratic values – including passing comprehensive, structural reforms.
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McFaul: Can America and Russia Cooperate in Syria?

Commentary / January 6, 2016

President Vladimir Putin's decision to intervene in Syria marked a major turning point in Russian foreign policy in 2015. FSI Director and former U.S. Ambassador to the Russian Federation Michael McFaul argues that in the long run, Russia could become a partner in the global fight against terrorism. And, in principle, the U.S., the EU, and countries around the world should welcome Russian cooperation in this mission.

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