President’s Message

In the dynamic security setting of the twenty-first century, we at the Institute for Foreign Policy Analysis (IFPA) continue to build on our achievements over a period of thirty-five years. These include innovative analyses that identify over-the-horizon challenges and set forth creative policy options. We seek not only to respond to pressing issues but also to anticipate future security challenges. Our studies bring together the broad range of factors — political, military, economic, and diplomatic — as well as the actors — civilian and military, from the United States and abroad — shaping the setting within which policy is forged. We address broadly based strategic level issues, together with specific problems facing policy makers and others having a direct interest in security.

Our work encompasses counterproliferation strategies to cope with the challenges of states and terrorists; weapons of mass destruction; key security issues in regions of importance, from the Middle East to East Asia, from Europe to this hemisphere; building layered defenses for homeland security; the problems of failed states that may or have become terrorist havens; the implications of unconventional and irregular warfare for U.S. strategy and force levels; rethinking deterrence requirements for new security needs; and the emerging geopolitical setting that is being shaped by technologies for cyberwar and a host of other asymmetric threats, as well as the needs of energy security.

We organize large numbers of high-level workshops and complete forward-looking studies on emerging risks to homeland security and on the best ways to counter them at the federal, state, and local levels, and in concert with allies and coalition partners. IFPA analysts examine changes to overseas basing structures to improve U.S. strategic flexibility, and they assess twenty-first-century requirements for coalition building and security cooperation to counter global terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. 

Our cutting-edge work identifies strategies and capabilities as well as policy options in a world in which the customary boundaries between international and domestic security have been obliterated by America’s vulnerability at home from threats originating far from its shores. With homeland security now an integral part of national security, professions, occupations, and issues once considered to be largely or exclusively in, respectively, the foreign policy realm or the or domestic realm have been brought together. Clearly, if the United States is to surmount twenty-first-century challenges, a new mindset must continue to be nurtured in which the “dots are connected” in unaccustomed ways in a rapidly changing world.

Based in the private sector and having extensive networks beyond the official policy community at home and abroad, IFPA is uniquely positioned to provide innovative solutions to complex challenges requiring this new mindset. We draw regularly on expertise in the civilian and military communities in countries around the world, in and out of government, to assist in our work.

We strive to meet urgent official policy needs as well as to identify future issues. Our analyses, workshops, and conferences are greatly valued and in high demand both within government circles and in the private sector. We work closely with senior policy makers in the executive branch and the military leadership, as well as with members of Congress and with the corporate world community. With events that we sponsor or organize, we facilitate cross-departmental, interagency, and international dialogue to produce integrated, strategically focused policies that otherwise would not be possible, given the compartmentalization of decision-making structures and mindsets. We examine in greater depth and within a longer timeframe critical policy problems that are often overshadowed by daily events.

This website provides detailed, up-to-date information about IFPA and our many programmatic activities. We invite you to browse our site to learn more about IFPA’s work and to feel free to contact us with questions or comments.

RLP Signature

Robert L. Pfaltzgraff, Jr.