October 9th, 2015
Thank you for attending today’s Ideas Industry conference held at The Fletcher School. Check back here soon for recorded videos of today’s conference.

As the 2016 presidential race heats up, foreign policy looks like it will play a prominent role in the campaign.  Even at this embryonic stage, the presidential candidates have weighed in on a myriad number of foreign affairs topics, including the nuclear deal with Iran, the war against the Islamic State, the proper U.S. approach towards immigration, and Sino-American relations.  The salience of foreign affairs has waxed and waned in post-Cold War presidential campaigns. Based on the campaign rhetoric and polling to date, however, 2016 will be a year when it matters.

Saying that foreign affairs will be a campaign issue gives rise to some important questions, however.  How do candidates develop their foreign policy worldview?  What is the relationship between foreign policy expertise and the candidate and campaign staff? Do campaign pledges on foreign affairs matter if a candidate wins?  And how does all of the campaign rhetoric on foreign policy look to the rest of the world?

We will tackle these questions at The Fletcher School on Friday, October 9th, with a conference of journalists, scholars, pollsters, policy practitioners, and international observers – part of a larger, multiyear, overarching project on the ideas industry in American foreign policy.