The Stanley Foundation
Seeking a secure peace with freedom and justice, built on global citizenship and effective global governance.

The Stanley Foundation convenes its Strategy for Peace Conference annually to consider key policy challenges, drawing on the experience and knowledge of invited experts from the public and private sectors who meet in autonomous roundtables. Held at the Airlie Center outside Washington, DC, this is the 59th consecutive year the foundation has held the conference.

At the conference concurrent roundtables are focused on each of the foundation’s three current areas of programming—climate changenuclear policy, and mass violence and atrocities. In 2018, a fourth roundtable will focus on global governance. Roundtable discussion is intended to generate specific recommendations for policy change and multilateral action.

On the second night of the conference, there will be a PechaKucha-style presentation highlighting the Stanley Foundation’s media programming. Three journalists will share images from their work related to the three main issue areas on which the foundation focuses its programming.

In this video, learn more from Stanley Foundation President Keith Porter, and hear from attendees of the 2018 conference.

2018 Concurrent Roundtables

Frontier Technologies: Designing Multistakeholder Approaches for Technology Governance and the Disarmament Agenda

Rapid advances in science and technology have benefited virtually all aspects of modern life and have impacted every UN Member State. Yet, as the pace of technology development accelerates, the beneficial derivatives of ‘frontier technologies’ have also yielded potentially worrisome implications for their malicious misapplication. Given the pace of change and rate of diffusion with these technologies, this era will require new partnerships and more stakeholders to promote governance solutions. Civilian industry, which has been instrumental to the innovation, trade and management of advanced technology, must also be central to efforts to maximize the benefits or mitigate any unintended consequences of technology, together with governments, civil society, and academics.

This roundtable will provide design recommendations for how to advance technology governance measures through multistakeholder efforts in context with international security and the disarmament agenda. It will ask which frameworks for technology assessment and governance would best address the disarmament challenges faced by the United Nations and Member States. It will discuss regional approaches for such efforts. It will also explore potential multilateral mechanisms that could advance technology governance.

Facilitator: Yoni Gordis, Partner, Changecraft Consulting
Roundtable Organizer: Benjamin Loehrke, Program Officer, The Stanley Foundation
Rapporteur: Luisa Kenausis, Program Assistant, The Stanley Foundation

Developing Demand-Side Solutions to Challenging Problems

It’s time to face facts: the liberal international order is in trouble—and for the most part, no one seems to know what to do about it. A decade of conferences, dialogues, and think pieces have produced little new thinking on what can be done in the current political climate. Good intentions have not translated into a realistic path forward.

We’re ready to try a new approach, one that explores new and innovative approaches to the world’s biggest challenges. Our goal is to focus on solutions, not structures—and to identify concrete, real-world ideas where there already is a demand signal for networked cooperation. Doing so will require us to rethink what we mean by the liberal international order—and in the process expand it to include the voices and ideas of underrepresented and unconventional individuals and institutions.

As a first step, the Stanley Foundation is bringing together a small, select group of individuals who have a track record of thinking innovatively on developing and delivering solutions in difficult political and policy environments. You will help us identify and prioritize the specific challenges that could benefit from more effective cooperative action. We anticipate our conversation will be an essential first step as we work to explore innovative approaches, evaluate the world’s capacity to implement them, and develop real-world solutions.

  • Chair: Charles J. Brown, Managing Partner, Strategy for Humanity
  • Roundtable Organizer: Keith Porter, President and CEO, The Stanley Foundation
  • Rapporteur: Ashleigh M. Landau, Administrative Director for the University of Oregon Global Justice Program

The Role of International Climate Change Policy in Addressing Disruptive Economic, Technological, and Social Change

The rapid decarbonization required to meet the 1.5°C temperature goal of the Paris Agreement will occur in a period of disruptive economic, technological, and social and political change. Climate action is only one of many factors that drive this change, yet in many ways is intertwined with them. Automation, for example, presents opportunities to reduce energy consumption, yet is seen as potentially displacing jobs and deepening inequality. If policymakers cannot address worries about these consequences, backlash could lead to political crises both within countries and globally.

This roundtable will examine the role of climate policy amid disruptive change. How can climate policy play a positive role? Where can accelerated climate action alleviate or address the feared negative effects of disruptive change? As with decarbonization, disruptive change is accelerating, and the questions it poses need urgent attention.

More specifically, this roundtable will identify critical disruptions and themes such as automation, inequality, and populism. It will examine changes in government, business, and civil society. Participants will compare examples of changes that are already occurring, from transitions away from coal to the automation and electrification of vehicles. The roundtable will surface solutions and explore the potential positive spillover effects of climate action or how the Paris Agreement can contribute positively to these challenges. Roundtable participants will make recommendations for the wide range of stakeholders involved in climate action—advocates, researchers, funders, cities, states and regions, businesses, countries, and intergovernmental organizations.

  • Roundtable Organizer: Rei Tang, Program Officer, The Stanley Foundation
  • Rapporteur: Mark Conway, Associate Program Officer, The Stanley Foundation

The Roleof International Climate Policy in Addressing Socioeconomic Change Policy Dialogue Brief
Participant LIst

The Business Case for Building Resilience and Pursuing Peace

In 2017, violence cost the global economy $14.8 trillion; the economic impact of such violence and conflict has a significant impact on small and medium enterprises, or SMEs, which often lack the same risk-mitigating tools of large multinational corporations. Research from multiple sources all demonstrate the cost-effectiveness of successful conflict prevention and peacebuilding efforts, and prevention is financially more cost-effective than response during and post-conflict. While the rationale for private sector engagement in prevention efforts is clear, detailed analysis of how the private sector can effectively engage in and benefit from preventative actions remains murky at best, and non-inclusive of business perspectives at worst. 

This raises a few questions: is there only an economic and profit-driven argument for private sector engagement in prevention and peacebuilding, or is there a moral obligation in pursuit of sustainable business practices? What advantages are there for corporate actors to invest in peace, and how should they do so with respect to human rights? What are the opportunities and challenges for innovative finance mechanisms in the pursuit of resilience and peace? And simply, even if the former questions are answered, how does the private sector successfully partner with civil society and academia?

There is now an opportune moment for a new conversation, bringing together disparate conversations for better informed multisectoral collaboration to prevent violent conflict. Therefore this roundtable will bring together diverse stakeholders from across the private and public sectors for a targeted and recommendation-driven dialogue on the role of business—in particular SMEs—in promoting resilience against violent conflict. Based on recent research and policy developments, participants will consider the challenges and opportunities that exist for private sector engagement in building resilience to violent conflict, as well as reviewing the mechanisms that exist or that could be developed to facilitate collaboration between local SMEs, larger private sector representation in global fora, and peacebuilding and humanitarian actors internationally. This discussion will enable roundtable participants to create recommendations and pinpoint specific and targeted areas of opportunity for key actors. 

  • Chair: Michelle Breslauer, Program Director, Americas, Institute for Economics and Peace
  • Roundtable Organizers: Jai-Ayla Quest, Program Officer, The Stanley Foundation; Kelsey Shantz, Program Associate, The Stanley Foundation

The Business Case for Building Resilience and Pursuing Peace Policy Dialogue Brief
The Business Case for Building Resilience and Pursuing Peace Policy Memo
Participant List

Catherine Miller Explorer Awards: Where in the World Do You Want to Go? Catherine Miller Explorer Awards: Where in the World Do You Want to Go?
Attention all full-time Muscatine Community School District and Saints Mary and Mathias Catholic School K-12 teachers, for the 2019-2020 school year, the Stanley Foundation announces: Catherine Miller Explorer Awards. Enter the drawing.

60th Strategy for Peace Conference 60th Strategy for Peace Conference
The Stanley Foundation convenes its Strategy for Peace Conference annually to consider key policy challenges, drawing on the experience and knowledge of invited experts from the public and private sectors.

Concurrent roundtables focused on each of the foundation’s three current areas of programming—climate changenuclear policy, and mass violence and atrocities. These roundtable discussions are intended to generate group consensus recommendations for policy change and multilateral action. More.

Courier Courier
The Spring 2019 issue of Courier highlights some of the impact-driven activities the Stanley Foundation pursue with its partners. This includes stories that resulted from two journalism workshops: one examining the false missile alert in Hawaii, as well as one focused on issues of conflict and instability. This issue also examines how Green Banks could help bridge the climate finance gap, explores a new initiative that hopes to bring gender equity to the nuclear field, and brings you the stories of three teachers who enhanced their understanding of the world through travel. Spring 2019 PDF. Subscribe for Free.

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The Stanley Foundation: Part of COP24 The Stanley Foundation: Part of COP24
As a part of our efforts to limit global warming to 1.5°C, the foundation put forward policy ideas to achieve a global turning point in emissions by 2020, built upon efforts to catalyze global climate action by countries and sub- and non-state actors, and worked with journalists to strengthen coverage of the UN climate negotiations.