Ellen Laipson

President and CEO
  • Middle East/Southwest Asia

Ellen Laipson is president and chief executive officer of Stimson. She also directs the Middle East/Southwest Asia program, which covers issues including Gulf security and the strategic repercussions of the Arab transitions. Laipson joined Stimson in 2002, after 25 years of government service. Key positions included vice chair of the National Intelligence Council (NIC) (1997-2002) and special assistant to the U.S. permanent representative to the United Nations (1995-97).

Laipson's earlier government career focused on analysis and policymaking on Middle East and South Asian issues. She was director for Near East and South Asian Affairs for the National Security Council (1993-95), national intelligence officer for Near and South Asia (1990-93), a member of the State Department's policy planning staff (1986-87), and a specialist in Middle East affairs for the Congressional Research Service.

Laipson is a frequent speaker on Middle East issues, and on U.S. foreign policy and global trends. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and serves on the International Advisory Council of the International Institute of Strategic Studies. She also serves on the board of the Asia Foundation.  She was a member of President Obama's Intelligence Advisory Board from 2009-2013, and since 2011, has served on the Secretary of State's Foreign Affairs Policy Board.

Laipson has an M.A. from the School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University and a B.A. from Cornell University.

Selected Publications

Mr. Jomaa Goes To Washington: A Breath Of Fresh Air From Tunisia's ‘Arab Spring' Revolution (co-author, International Business Times, April 4, 2014)

The President and King Abdullah talk regional security (Stimson Center, April 1, 2014)

Measuring US Impact and Influence in Iraq (Stimson Center, February 28, 2014)

Saudi-US friendship under pressure (CNN, November, 7, 2013)

More questions than answers about Afghan future (CNN, October 14, 2013)

Syria And Iran: The U.N. Proves Its Worth To The U.S. (International Business Times, October 10, 2013)

Picture Perfect: The Economic Integration of North Africa (Outpost, June 24, 2013)

Seismic Shift: Understanding Change in the Middle East (project director, May 2011)

The Future of US-Iraq Relations (Stimson Center, April 2010)

On the Move: Migration Challenges in the Indian Ocean Littoral (coeditor, Stimson, 2010)

America and the Emerging Iraqi Reality: New Goals, No Illusions (The Century Foundation, 2008)

Prospects for Middle East Security-Sector Reform (Survival, 2007)

Iraq and America: Choices and Consequences (coeditor, Stimson, July 2006)

Iraqi Kurds and Iraq's Future (coauthor, Middle East Policy, 2006)

Improving the Interagency Process to Face 21st Century Security Challenges (2005)

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