Richard Ponzio is Director of the Global Governance, Justice & Security Program and a Senior Fellow at Stimson. Previously, he directed the Global Governance Program at The Hague Institute for Global Justice, where (in a partnership with Stimson) he served as Director for the Albright-Gambari Commission on Global Security, Justice & Governance. He brings expertise in the areas of global and national democratic institution-building, global political economy, South-Central Asia, and the role of international institutions in responding to state fragility, climate instability, global financial volatility, and population displacement.
Ponzio is formerly a Senior Adviser in the U.S. Department of State’s Office of the Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, where he conceptualized and coordinated Secretary Hillary Clinton’s and later John Kerry’s New Silk Road initiative. Earlier he served as a Senior Strategy and Policy Officer in the State Department’s Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations, where he initiated a global network of multi/bilateral peacebuilding and stabilization organizations.
From 1999-2009, Ponzio served in a variety of senior policy and strategic planning positions for the United Nations in Afghanistan, Kosovo, Pakistan, Sierra Leone, the Solomon Islands, and New York. From 1997-1999, he was a Visiting Fulbright Fellow at the Mahbub ul Haq Human Development Centre in Islamabad, where his research focused on the governance-security-development nexus in South Asia.
Ponzio has published widely in academic and policy journals (including Global Governance, Foreign Policy, and Survival), edited volumes, newspapers, U.N. policy reports (including national, regional, and global Human Development Reports), and books, including Democratic Peacebuilding: Aiding Afghanistan and other Fragile States (OUP, 2011) and Human Development and Global Institutions: Evolution, Impact, and Reform (Routledge, January 2016, with Dr. Arunabha Ghosh). He serves on the board of the Academic Council on the UN System.
Ponzio completed his doctorate in politics and international relations at the University of Oxford on a Clarendon Scholarship and undertook earlier studies at The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy (M.A.), The Graduate Institute Geneva (M.A.) as a MacJannet Fellow, and Columbia University (B.A).
Select Publications (with latest publications following in the new format below):
- An Innovation Agenda for UN 75 (Stimson)– June 2019
- The Paris Peace Forum: A Davos for the People? (PassBlue) – November 2018
- Reviving Multilateralism on the Road to 2020 (PassBlue) – October 2018
- UN, World Bank Reports: Policy Breakthroughs on Sustaining Peace? (IPI Global Observatory) – April 2018
- Just Security in an Undergoverned World (Oxford) – January 2018
- Hitting the Reset on the UN? (Stimson) – September 2017
- Engaging the New Majority: US Perspectives and Experience (Stimson) – August 2017
Peaceful Settlement of Disputes and Conflict Prevention (March 2017 and forthcoming Oxford Handbook on the United Nations, 2nd edition)
A Fool’s Errand? The Next Secretary-General and United Nations Reform (Global Policy) – December 2016
- Just Security and the Crisis of Global Governance (Survival) – August 2016
- Chapter: The Dynamics that Shaped the Establishment of the Peacebuilding Architecture in the Early Years (Routledge) – April 2016
- Human Development and Global Institutions: Evolution, Impact, Reform (Routledge) – January 2016
- Stability In Afghanistan Is Regional, Stupid (Foreign Policy) – Dec. 2015
- Working Paper: Building Peace in Afghanistan through Regional Economic Integration: From RECCA-VI to the Heart of Asia Ministerial – Nov. 2015
- Confronting the Crisis of Global Governance (Commission on Global Security, Justice & Governance) – June 2015
- In the Afterglow of the London Conference (Foreign Policy) – Dec. 2014
- Chapter: After Exit: The UN Peacebuilding Architecture (Oxford University Press) – September 2012
- Democratic Peacebuilding: Aiding Afghanistan and other Fragile States (Oxford University Press) – January 2011
- Pioneering the Human Development Revolution: An Intellectual Biography of Mahbub ul Hag (Oxford University Press) – June 2008
- Transforming Political Authority: UN Democratic Peacebuilding in Afghanistan (Global Governance) – April 2007
- Afghanistan in Transition: Security, Governance and Statebuilding (International Peacekeeping – Special Issue Co-Editor) – January 2007