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  • Author: David J. Berteau, Guy Ben-Ari, Gregory Sanders, Jesse Ellman, David Morrow
  • Publication Date: 05-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: Spending by the Department of Defense (DoD) on services contracts, which range from clerical and administrative work to vehicle maintenance to research and development (R), has been largely neglected by past studies of DoD spending trends. Yet DoD spending on services contract actions amounted to just under $200 billion in 2011, more than 50 percent of total DoD contract spending and nearly a third of the entire DoD budget. Both the executive branch and Congress have implemented policies to improve acquisitions of services, but the impacts of their efforts remain uncertain without a clear, concise analysis of past spending. And the then Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, Dr. Ashton Carter, has stated that: “Most of our services acquires, unlike weapons-system acquires, are amateurs… I intend to help them get better at it” (Speech at the Heritage Foundation, April 20, 2011).
  • Topic: Defense Policy, Economics, Government, Monetary Policy
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Murray Hiebert, Ernest Z. Bower, Elina Noor, Mahani Zainal Abidin, Gregory Poling, Tham Siew Yean
  • Publication Date: 05-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: Relations between the United States and Malaysia are at an all-time high. Since President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Najib Razak entered office in 2009, both countries' governments have committed to a new beginning and moved to establish closer ties through increased political, economic, and people-to-people cooperation.
  • Topic: Economics, International Cooperation, International Trade and Finance, Treaties and Agreements, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: United States, Malaysia
  • Author: Anthony H. Cordesman
  • Publication Date: 05-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: It is surprisingly difficult to get a meaningful estimate of the total cost of the Afghan conflict, total spending on Afghan forces and total spending on various forms of aid. More data are available on US efforts – which have dominated military and aid spending, but even these data present serious problems in reliability, consistency, and definition. Moreover, it is only since FY2012 that the US provided an integrated request for funding for the war as part of its annual budget request. The data for the period before FY2009 are accurate pictures of the Department of Defense request, but there is only a CRS estimate of total spending the previous years.
  • Topic: Economics, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: Anthony H. Cordesman, Sean T. Mann, Bryan Gold
  • Publication Date: 09-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: In a little over two years the US and its allies plan to hand over security and other responsibilities to the Afghan government as part of a process labeled “Transition.” Afghanistan is still at war and will probably be at war long after 2014. The political, governance, and economic dimensions of this Transition, however, will be as important as any developments in the fighting.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Economics
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Asia
  • Author: Anthony H. Cordesman, Robert Shelala II
  • Publication Date: 09-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: The US may not face peer threats in the near to mid term, but it faces a wide variety of lesser threats that make maintaining effective military forces, foreign aid, and other national security programs a vital national security interest. The US does need to reshape its national security planning and strategy to do a far better job of allocating resources to meet these threats. It needs to abandon theoretical and conceptual exercises in strategy that do not focus on detailed force plans, manpower plans, procurement plans, and budgets; and use its resources more wisely. The US still dominates world military spending, but it must recognize that maintaining the US economy is a vital national security interest in a world where the growth and development of other nations and regions means that the relative share the US has in the global economy will decline steadily over time, even under the best circumstances. At the same time, US dependence on the security and stability of the global economy will continue to grow indefinitely in the future. Talk of any form of “independence,” including freedom from energy imports, is a dangerous myth. The US cannot maintain and grow its economy without strong military forces and effective diplomatic and aid efforts. US military and national security spending already places a far lower burden on the US economy than during the peaceful periods of the Cold War, and existing spending plans will lower that burden in the future. National security spending is now averaging between 4% and 5% of the GDP – in spite of the fact the US has been fighting two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan – versus 6-7% during the Cold War.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, Economics
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Asia
  • Author: Suzanne Brundage, J. Stephen Morrison
  • Publication Date: 11-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: From July 22 to July 27, 2012, Washington, D.C., was host to the International AIDS Conference, the biannual Super Bowl of global health and the preeminent forum for reviewing the science, policy, programs, and politics in the fight against HIV/AIDS.
  • Topic: Economics, Health, Humanitarian Aid, Health Care Policy
  • Political Geography: United States, Washington
  • Author: Anthony H. Cordesman
  • Publication Date: 03-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: Economics are as important to Iraq's stability and political accommodation as security and governance, and they are equally critical to creating a successful strategic partnership between Iraq and the United States. It is far from easy, however, to analyze many of the key factors and trends involved. Iraqi data are weak and sometimes absent. U.S. and Coalition forces generally failed to look in detail at many of Iraq's most serious economic problems, or they issued heavily politicized reports designed to show that Iraqi “reconstruction” had been far more successful than it really was.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East
  • Author: Keith C. Smith
  • Publication Date: 02-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: It is my thesis that the national security risk posed by Russian energy policies are only tangentially related to Europe's dependency on Russian energy imports. The primary energy risk to Europe, and especially to the newer EU members, stems from the corrosive effect this dependency has on governance and on transatlantic cooperation. Moscow's divide-and-conquer tactics have successfully prevented greater inter-European cooperation on both economic and security issues. As we shall see, these factors have added to already existing strains in the U.S.-Europe relationship. Further NATO enlargement has been stopped, in part, due to Moscow's energy ties with the wealthier Western European states. It is in the U.S. interest to assist those Eastern and Central European (ECE) states that are highly dependent on Russian energy imports and are most susceptible to imported corruption. Kremlin officials, supported by 60 percent of Russian public opinion, favor reestablishing Soviet-era control or influence over ECE countries. The threat to the sovereignty of these new democracies cannot be dismissed.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe, Moscow
  • Author: Matthew Frank, Jenna Goodward, Sarah Ladislaw, Kate Zyla
  • Publication Date: 05-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: While natural gas can play a critical role during the transition to a secure, low-carbon economy, there are both climate and energy security risks associated with a dramatic shift to natural gas. This paper explores the current role of natural gas in the United States' energy mix, reasons that climate change and energy security policies might increase demand for natural gas, and the implications of such a shift. It concludes with several recommendations for policymakers looking to craft a rational role for natural gas in the U.S. energy sector.
  • Topic: Economics, Energy Policy, Natural Resources
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Jamie P. Horsley
  • Publication Date: 04-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: Western media reporting on China does not give the impression of a rule of law country. We read of frequent corruption scandals, a harsh criminal justice system still plagued by the use of torture, increasingly violent and widespread social unrest over unpaid wages, environmental degradation and irregular takings of land and housing. Outspoken academics, activist lawyers, investigative journalists and other champions of the disadvantaged and unfortunate are arrested, restrained or lose their jobs. Entrepreneurs have their successful businesses expropriated by local governments in seeming violation of the recently added Constitutional guarantee to protect private property. Citizens pursue their grievances more through extra-judicial avenues than in weak and politically submissive courts. Yet China's economy gallops ahead, apparently confounding conventional wisdom that economic development requires the rule of law.
  • Topic: International Relations, Development, Economics
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Asia