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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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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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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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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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McFaul on 'Twitter diplomacy'

News / October 2, 2014

FSI Senior Fellow Michael McFaul speaks with BBC World Tonight on his use of 'Twitter diplomacy' as an instrumental tool during his time as U.S. Ambassador to Russia. McFaul made an exerted effort to interact with the Russian populace young and old via social media, which sparked some criticism from the Russian government. 

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FSI's Mike McFaul on the 'judo master' in the Kremlin

Commentary / August 5, 2014
Former Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul, a senior fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute, is featured in this week's New Yorker magazine and writes in this Politico piece that Russia's President Vladimir Putin sees a path to glory that does not involve democratic governance and ignores international norms.
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Russia expert appointed to national security posts

News / February 20, 2009
Stanford political science Professor Michael McFaul has been tapped by President Barack Obama to serve as special assistant to the president for National Security Affairs and senior director for Russian and Eurasian affairs at the National Security Council.
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The myth of the authoritarian model: How Putin's crackdown holds Russia back

Commentary / September 24, 2008
The conventional explanation for Vladimir Putin's popularity is straightforward. In the 1990s, under post-Soviet Russia's first president, Boris Yeltsin, the state did not govern, the economy shrank, and the population suffered. Since 2000, under Putin, order has returned, the economy has flourished, and the average Russian is living better than ever before. As political freedom has decreased, economic growth has increased. Putin may have rolled back democratic gains, the story goes, but these were necessary sacrifices on the altar of stability and growth.
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McFaul part of Carnegie Endowment panel on Russia's 'over-managed democracy'

News / May 18, 2008
On May 5 a panel of Russia experts including CDDRL Director Michael McFaul presented analysis of the current state of Russia's political and economic development and the likelihood of continuity or change in Dmitry Medvedev's first term as president of Russia. The panel, which was was held at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington, D.C., included McFaul and scholars-in-residence at the Carnegie Moscow Center Nikolay Petrov and Maria Lipman, and was moderated by Thomas Carothers.
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McFaul, Stoner-Weiss editorial on the "myth of Putin's success" in IHT

Commentary / December 13, 2007
Vladimir Putin's designation of Dmitri Medvedev as his preferred successor should be more than enough for Medvedev to win the March presidential election in Russia by a landslide. Not surprisingly, he has already pledged to continue his mentor's policies and suggested that Putin become prime minister to ensure his continued involvement in ruling Russia.
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FSI's Michael McFaul and Larry Diamond "Tops" for Stanford Students

News / August 1, 2007
The Stanford alumni association announced in May the selection of CDDRL Director Michael McFaul as the 2007 Class Day speaker. Hoover Institution senior fellow and CDDRL democracy program coordinator Larry Diamond was selected as Teacher of the Year by the Associated Students of Stanford University and honored during Commencement Weekend with the Dinkelspiel Award for Distinctive Contributions to Undergraduate Education.
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Inside Iran's Fractured Regime

Commentary / June 25, 2006
For weeks, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has insisted that there are no fissures in the Iranian regime. Any allegations of such tensions are simply part of a U.S. propaganda war against Tehran, he declared. But then last Monday, at what was billed as a "unity lunch," Khamenei asked 28 of the country's most powerful leaders -- mostly mullahs -- to put aside their differences and coalesce around a single cause: preserving the system.
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End of Partnership

Commentary / May 11, 2006
U.S. Vice President criticized the policy of Russian authorities for cutting back civil rights and blackmailing its neighbors in his characteristically harsh manner. Kremlin sources referred to his speech as poorly informed and not objective. Others, both in Moscow and in the West, called it a return to the Cold War. Some denied that the vice president's speech represented the actual intentions of the Bush administration. Maybe all of those statements are nothing more than propaganda. But it is more likely that reflect a deep lack of understanding of American foreign policy and its foreign policy culture.
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