Current Programs

  • Programming Background

    Chumir Foundation programs address conditions the Foundation has selected as being significantly undermining of a fair, harmonious and productive society. It is also the continuation of a sequence of research, dialogue and policy programming involving scholars, policy leaders and the public at large. It reflects our commitment to open and informed discussion of policy choices across different views and interests – and to a focus on practical and constructive proposals and impacts.

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  • Three Powers and World Order

    A clear rise in tensions and limited dialogue between the United States, China and Russia emphasizes the importance of managing rivalries that involve potential conflicts and of considering issues of possible cooperation or agreement on rules on matters of potentially shared interests. How these three very unequal powers will position themselves vis-à-vis one another in the years to come will have a major impact on global political conditions played-out in several political theaters around the world. In partnership with the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, we seek to identify a safe passage from a world order dominated by a single power to a more complex arrangement with many layers and different players. The transition will not proceed as well through unilateral action and reaction as it would through dialogue, or, more ambitiously, if accompanied by select cooperative initiatives.

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  • Forced Displacement

    An historically high 68.5 million people are forcibly displaced. Neighboring, poorest countries host 85% of them. This is a concern for fairness, economic impact, stability, social cohesion and security. The Foundation convened a World Commission on Forced Displacement supported by leading global experts to address six principle issues ‘Pillars’ – protection, sharing responsibilities, the public narrative, social inclusion, use of technology - and investment for gainful employment as an essential part of any solution. Scale necessitates private sector investment in locations that are challenging and currently not attracting much commercial investment. A ‘Merchant Bank’ would serve donors, with enhanced returns and exports; host community residents and the displaced, with economic activity and incomes; all with improved stability and security. A nimble business development capacity would shepherd projects from conception to implementation, de-risking as reasonable and needed. (See Merchant Bank program description.)

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  • A Merchant Bank

    If significant amounts of private sector investment capital is to be deployed in challenging conditions and locations, new methods and mechanisms are required. A Merchant Bank for facilitating private sector investment and activity for public policy reasons in low and middle income countries which would address the missing elements or gaps left by current institutional missions, capacities, and practices in these markets, would proactively search, initiate and sponsor ventures; ensure their feasibility assessment; structure transactions; identify first hand the impediments and arrange for the de-risking of ventures and infrastructure projects; and negotiate any necessary policy accommodations. In short, it would drive a project from conception to investment, maximizing private sector participation.

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  • Technology, Productivity, Income Distribution

    In partnership with the Brookings Institution, the Foundation conducted research to examine the paradox of dramatic technology advances, contemporaneous slow growth, even stagnation, in overall productivity and output; alongside very, and increasingly, disparate distribution of income and wealth. A key finding is that the same dynamics and causes are affecting adversely aggregate productivity, output, as well as income and wealth distribution – an issue for people in every walk of life. This invites resistance to technological innovation and efficiency-enhancing globalization, sacrificing economic gains in the absence of policy response. A book, Productive Equity: The Twin Challenges of Reviving Productivity and Reducing Inequality, documents the commissioned research and our thinking; and sets out the dynamics, findings and ingredients for a dialogue on policy responses.

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  • North American Foreign Policy Institute

    The student community in an increasingly globalized world, should be considering international issues as they affect our lives. The Foundation has begun an Institute - a joint venture with the Foreign Policy Association - to inform and engage the next generation. To date, it has organized an annual week-long training Institute to prepare High School teachers from Canada, Mexico and the United States to lead, in their schools, well-informed dialogue on international issues, policy choices, and their consequences; while recognizing differing national positions and perspectives. Explanatory materials and dialogues with policy makers, academics, and diplomats have been mobilized for the purpose. Discussions are mindful of the interconnectedness, competing interests, risks and conflicts, as well as the management issues which require global cooperation.

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  • The Role of Art in Society

    The arts do not shape events - the arts shape man - man shapes events. The influences of the arts are seen on individuals and in societies through learning, the fostering of creativity and innovation, experiencing diversity and encouraging tolerance and pluralism. The arts can contribute to a constructive national identity and pride, bridge divides by addressing cross-cultural and social differences, and enrich societies through diversity and dialogue, impactful symbolism and shared human experience.

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Brussels, Belguim; December 7, 2018
Report of the World Commission on Forced Displacement and a Merchant Bank Proposal is presented to Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the EU
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Events – Conferences – Symposia

Congress of Vienna 2015
The Congress of Vienna 2015 was a gathering of knowledgeable individuals convened to consider ways to promote international cooperation on matters important for stability, fairness and peace. Read More »
Report of the World Commission on Forced Displacement
Six solution-oriented recommendations by experts in the field that provide necessary framework for making a lasting impact for the 68.5 million forcibly displaced and the low and middle income countries to which they have fled. Read More »
Publication of "Productive Equity: The Twin Challenges of Reviving Productivity and Reducing Inequality"
The culmination of an in depth look at the how and why advances in technology are not resulting in higher productivity and equitable income distribution. Read More »
A Merchant Bank for Development Investment
A ‘Merchant Bank’, a special purpose vehicle and fund to increase private sector activity and investment of commercial capital in ventures and infrastructure,is proposed to serve important public policy goals in locations where conditions impede such activities. Read More »
The Arts in Vienna: A Proud History, A Painful Past.
Symposia were organized in New York, Toronto and Calgary to celebrate the artistic history of Vienna, examine the progression of discrimination and atrocities in Vienna’s Nazified cultural and scientific establishments as well as the ethical steps taken in recent decades towards remembrance and reconciliation and the role of arts in society in general. Read More »