(New York, NY) — The Century Foundation (TCF) today announced the formation of Century International, the think tank’s new independent center for international research and policy. Led by director Thanassis Cambanis, Century International builds on TCF’s longstanding commitment to conducting foreign policy research and analysis, and reflects the work in recent years by TCF’s foreign policy team to develop a world class, highly-respected international affairs program.
Century International will produce original research that focuses on the human impact of global policy by cultivating a unique network of policy researchers with deep ties to the regions where they work. To bridge the gap between traditional government work and policy research, the center will draw together scholars, activists, researchers, and journalists to produce original ethnographic reporting. Century International describes itself as “critical, independent, and committed to investigating problems beyond the latest news cycle.”
“Too often foreign policy prescriptions are based on false narratives, which can lead to policies that further destabilize regions and erode individual rights. Century International wants to provide a corrective to that,” said Century International director and TCF senior fellow Thanassis Cambanis. “Our work is autonomous and critical: we research deeply on the ground, and engage with scholars and decision-makers. We believe this is the only approach to advance progressive, humanist policies that are rooted in the granular lived realities of individuals and communities.”
In addition to Cambanis, eight contributing fellows and an editor-in-chief will join Century International, alongside more than a dozen frequent outside contributors. A new advisory board of leading Middle East scholars will provide strategic guidance for the center’s programming, research agenda, and fundraising. (A full list of Century International contributing fellows and advisory board members is available below.)
“The formation of Century International couldn’t come at a better time. This is a unique moment to rethink America’s interests and approach abroad—to prioritize diplomacy over military intervention and chart a new U.S. foreign policy, in the Middle East and beyond,” said TCF President Mark Zuckerman. “TCF’s foreign policy team has built one of the preeminent international research operations. The launch of Century International will provide the team even greater independence and opportunity to expand their work and bridge the gap between policy and practice.”
Century International has already begun work on two major initiatives. The first, Faith and Fracture, supported by the Luce Foundation, looks at religious politics under transformative pressure. Working groups intend to explore Shia politics in Iraq from the U.S. invasion to the present and the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood’s transformation since the coup in 2013.
A second initiative, Transnational Trends in Citizenship, supported by the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the Open Society Foundations, brings together subject area specialists from different regions, organized in four groups: militias, gender and sexuality, police accountability, and protest. The initiative aims to break down barriers that separate researchers and activists who work on similar issues in different regions, and to look for common elements and interplay between global phenomena.
Most recently, Century International fellows and contributors published:
You can follow Century International’s work at https://tcf.org/century-international/, sign-up for updates here, and subscribe to the center’s podcast, Order from Ashes, here.
Century International Staff
Thanassis Cambanis, director
Eamon Kircher-Allen, editor in chief
Rohan Advani, fellow, podcast producer
Naira Antoun, fellow, director of Transnational Trends in Citizenship
Abdelrahman Ayyash, fellow, director of Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood working group
Sam Heller, fellow
Sajad Jiyad, fellow, director of Shia Politics working group
Aron Lund, fellow
Amanda Rogers, fellow
Dahlia Scheindlin, fellow
Marsin Alshamary, Hayley Bobseine, Kareem Chehayeb, Nicholas Danforth, Ben Robin D’Cruz, Amr ElAfifi, Maria Fantappie, Sima Ghaddar, Hafsa Halawa, Lahib Hegel, Abbas Kadhim, Noha Khaled, Ali Mawlawi, Renad Mansour, Inna Rudolf, Peter Schwartzstein
Century International Board of Advisors
Lina Attalah, Mada Masr
Melani Cammett, Harvard University
Michele Dunne, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
Mona Fawaz, American University of Beirut
Michael Wahid Hanna, International Crisis Group
Marc Lynch, George Washington University