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Carnegie Corporation of New York Awards Additional Grant to NYU School of Continuing and Professional Studies for its Center for Global Affairs Scenarios Initiative

March 29, 2011

$50,000 Grant Will Support Work on the Future of Pakistan

The New York University School of Continuing and Professional Studies (NYU-SCPS) has been awarded a $50,000 grant from the Carnegie Corporation of New York to continue funding its Center for Global Affairs (CGA) Scenarios Initiative. This is in addition to a $250,000 grant the Corporation awarded NYU-SCPS in 2009 to fund the CGA Scenarios Initiative, which over the last two years has generated alternate scenarios on countries pivotal to U.S. interests, including China, Russia, Turkey, and Ukraine. CGA will use the additional funds to develop alternate scenarios on the future of Pakistan and implications for U.S. interests.

“Especially in light of the uncertain and increasingly turbulent, interconnected global political environment, our School is proud and grateful that the CGA Scenarios Initiative has earned the continued support of the Carnegie Corporation, for its contribution to national policy discussions—because the Scenarios present credible alternative ways of thinking about the issues and conditions that may shape the evolution of regions that are vital to U.S. interests and world stability,” said Robert Lapiner, dean of the NYU School of Continuing and Professional Studies.

“The Scenarios Initiative creates an environment in which experts are encouraged to depart from the prevailing policy frames to put forward insightful, innovative analyses of future events,” said Patricia Moore Nicholas, project manager, International Peace and Security at the Corporation.  “Too often, foreign policy options are arrived at through a process that can dismiss riskier or novel analysis.”

The Scenarios Initiative is led by CGA Clinical Professor Michael Oppenheimer, who has for nearly 40 years provided research, consulting, and policy advice for the U.S. foreign policy and intelligence communities using similar scenarios-building exercises.

“This additional grant affirms the underlying rationale for the award Carnegie made to us two years ago: that there is a need among U.S. foreign policymakers for innovative analysis of pivotal countries that challenges mindsets and delivers unconventional wisdom,” said Oppenheimer. “By assembling the world’s top experts on these countries, building alternate futures through dialogue and research on drivers of change, and interacting with policymakers on implications for U.S. interests, we believe we can reduce surprise and improve the quality of our foreign policy. Pakistan will surely be a test of this proposition.”

The Scenario Initiative workshops and reports are built around a pressing issue or pivotal country—chosen by Oppenheimer and associates at the Center for Global Affairs—that combines great importance to U.S. interests with high variability and uncertainty. The 10 to 15 invited experts and policymakers discuss three or four possible scenarios that could arise within the area of focus. The group then builds out each of the scenarios by exploring relevant political, economic, cultural, and global forces at play; critical, “game changing” events; how the U.S. and other major state and non-state actors might behave; and what policy choices the U.S. must confront in each scenario.

The work of the Scenarios Initiative encompasses research by CGA graduate students on the drivers of future change for each country, meetings at CGA among experts and policymakers to identify and flesh out alternate scenarios, publication of reports describing the alternate futures and their implications for U.S. interests, and briefings for policymakers and observers.

For more information about the CGA Scenarios Initiative or to obtain copies of the reports, please visit or

EDITORS: For more information about the CGA Scenarios Initiative, please contact Cheryl Feliciano at


About Carnegie Corporation of New York

Carnegie Corporation of New York is a philanthropic foundation created by Andrew Carnegie in 1911 to do "real and permanent good in this world."

About the Center for Global Affairs and the NYU School of Continuing and Professional Studies

The Center for Global Affairs, one of several comprehensive academic divisions within the New York University School of Continuing and Professional Studies (NYU-SCPS), offers graduate and continuing education programs in global affairs and hosts a series of vibrant public events on related topics. Established in 1934, NYU-SCPS ( is one of NYU’s several degree-granting schools and colleges, each with a unique academic profile. The reputation of NYU-SCPS arises from its place as the NYU home for study and applied research related to key knowledge-based industries where the New York region leads globally. This is manifest in the School’s diverse graduate, undergraduate, and continuing education programs in fields such as Real Estate and Construction Management; Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports Management; Global Affairs; Philanthropy and Fundraising; Graphic Communications Media, Publishing, and Digital Arts; Human Capital Management, Marketing, and Public Relations; with complementary strengths in the Liberal and Allied Arts, Translation and Interpreting, Management and Information Technology, and Finance and Taxation. More than 100 distinguished full-time faculty members collaborate with an exceptional cadre of practitioner/adjunct faculty and lecturers to create vibrant professional and academic networks that attract some 4,800 degree-seeking students from around the globe. In addition, the School fulfills the recurrent continuing higher education needs of local and professional communities, as evidenced by 54,000 annual enrollments in individual courses, specialized certificate programs, conferences, workshops, seminars, and public events. NYU-SCPS is especially proud of the ever-growing worldwide network of its supportive degree-holding alumni, now 24,000 strong.

This Press Release is in the following Topics:
Applied Research, School of Professional Studies

Type: Press Release

Press Contact: Cheryl Feliciano | (212) 992-9103

Carnegie Awards Grant to NYU-SCPS for its CGA Scenarios Initiative

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