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Atlantic Council

The Future of Shale

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, January 8, 2019
Abstract in English: 
Over the last ten years, the United States has become the world’s leading producer of oil and gas, going from energy import dependence to energy dominance. This shift is due to the ability to produce from shale plays, a story which started in Texas and grew to have global ramifications. In a new report, The Future of Shale: The US Story and Its Implications, Global Energy Center Senior Fellow Ellen Scholl looks at the factors which enabled the rise of oil and gas production from shale deposits, focusing on the developments which have transpired in Texas.
This Global Energy Center report examines the Texas experience to draw lessons learned for countries hoping to utilize their shale resource potential and implications for global energy markets and geopolitics. The report concludes that the US case illustrates the challenges of operating in both a rural and an urban environment, underscores the unique advantages of the enabling ecosystem in the country, and demonstrates the importance of size and scale.
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24
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Toward Long-Term Solidarity with Syrian Refugees? - Turkey’s Policy Response and Challenges

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Publication date: 
Thursday, September 20, 2018
Abstract in English: 
For several years, Turkey has been hosting the world’s largest refugee population. This report, “Toward Long-Term Solidarity with Syrian Refugees? Turkey’s Policy Response and Challenges,” takes a comprehensive look at the policies, actors and issues that have characterized Turkey’s approach to Syrian refugees since 2011. In this age of mass refugee flows, Turkey distinguishes itself from other countries for demonstrating both financial and organizational capacities, as well as a strong political will to welcome refugees. Open door, camps and temporary protection have been at the core of Turkey’s approach. But an uninterrupted inflow of refugees, as well as a complicated foreign and domestic political environment, has put some limitations on Turkey’s welcome. And Turkey’s praised policy put in place in 2014-2015 has been slowly dismantled over time (with the sidelining of camps, the closing of the border, the limitation on freedom of movement for Syrians, early returns, possible push backs, etc.), and a new sense of direction now needs to be put in place.
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20
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Europe's Southern Gas Corridor: The Italian (Dis)connection

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, October 10, 2018
Abstract in English: 
In the issue brief "Europe's Southern Gas Corridor: The Italian (Dis)connection," Atlantic Council senior fellow John M. Roberts gives an update on where things stand in completing a crucial component of the Southern Gas Corridor, the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP). The pipeline - which will bring Shah Deniz gas from Azerbaijan to Greece, Albania, Italy and other Western European markets - is officially scheduled to open in 2020.
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20
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The Future of Development Finance

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, November 5, 2018
Abstract in English: 
Growing anxiety about China’s dominance of emerging markets spurred a rare bipartisan effort to pass the Better Utilization of Investments Leading to Development (BUILD) Act of 2018. The BUILD Act delivers a needed overhaul of US development finance capabilities and commercial diplomacy by subsuming the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) and other development finance agencies into a single, streamlined entity: The United States International Development Finance Corporation (USDFC). The USDFC will provide policymakers with new tools for supporting US commercial diplomacy and promoting US corporate success in fast-growing foreign markets, including equity and grant making capabilities.
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15
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Coming to Life: Artificial Intelligence in Africa

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, November 14, 2018
Abstract in English: 
The rapid uptake of disruptive technologies in Africa, such as mobile and financial technologies, is prompting speculation among tech investors about whether artificial intelligence (AI) applications will also take root on the continent.
A new issue brief by Africa Center Senior Fellow Aleksandra Gadzala, “Coming to Life: Artificial Intelligence in Africa,” mostly throws cold water on the idea. She acknowledges that many African nations still lack the statistical capacity, infrastructure, and good governance necessary to see AI take off. However, in a select handful of countries, AI solutions are already being successfully deployed at scale. Gadzala surveys the state of AI in Africa and discovers what these successful investments have in common, and what African governments need to do to strengthen the ecosystem necessary to see these technologies flourish, focusing on ways to foster a culture of research and innovation, improve investment environments, and strengthen policy frameworks so African nations can reap the full benefits of AI.
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12
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Odd Couple: The Future of the Australia-UAE Partnership

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, October 5, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Considering its geographic distance and lack of formal allies, the Middle East has played an outsized role in the history of Australia's global engagement. While Australia's interests in the region are real and increasing, as a middle power with finite resources it must take a smart approach to pursuing them. Australia has a strong track record of effective security partnership and investing in a close relationship with a key partner there offers a range of benefits. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is an ideal candidate as the two countries have rapidly built a strong and collaborative relationship, and they share a surprising number of mutual interests. But an expanded relationship faces several natural constraints, and both countries must have a clear-eyed and well-articulated understanding of the benefits and limitations if it is to mature.
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14
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Aftermath of the Arab Spring in North Africa

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, October 31, 2016
Abstract in English: 
At the outset of the political uprisings that began in North Africa in 2010, the four countries of Algeria, Libya, Morocco, and Tunisia faced similar economic and political challenges. Over the past almost six years, the countries have adopted different approaches to address these problems, however the overall economic picture today is grim amid varied political environments. In “Aftermath of the Arab Spring in North Africa,” authors Mohsin Khan and Karim Mezran examine whether these four North African countries have been successful in meetings the demands of their populations as expressed in the 2010-11 uprisings and what challenges remain for them in the future.
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16
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Toward a More Flexible NATO Nuclear Posture

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Publication date: 
Tuesday, November 15, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Over the past decade and a half, Russia has placed an increased emphasis on nuclear weapons in its military strategy and doctrine. Moscow’s assertive “escalate-to-de-escalate” nuclear strategy poses a distinguishable threat to NATO nations, and requires greater strategic thinking about NATO’s nuclear posture. After a quarter century of reducing its reliance on nuclear weapons, NATO now lacks a credible deterrent for Russian “de-escalatory” nuclear strikes. To grapple with this possibility, NATO must consider the development of new, more flexible nuclear capabilities of its own.
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14
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Broken Embraces: Is Central Europe Falling Out of Love with the West?

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, June 21, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Throughout much of the 1990s, progress was the order of the day. NATO enlargement under the Clinton administration was part of a broader global strategy, presenting democratic and entrepreneurial opportunity. This process was coupled with the prospect of new cooperation with Russia to create an undivided, free, and prosperous Europe. A decade and a half later, Central Europe faces severe challenges and signs of particular vulnerability to backlash against the very ideals this period set out to establish and the values expected to endure.
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10
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Post-Vienna: Prospects for Iran's Oil Production and Exports

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Friday, January 6, 2017
Abstract in English: 
Since the 1979 revolution, recurring rounds of sanctions and eight years of war with Iraq have hammered Iran’s oil production and export capacity. Despite boasting the fourth largest proven oil reserves in the world, Iran’s oil production and exports languished at 4 million barrels per day (mb/d) and 2.5 mb/d, respectively, in 2011.The entrance of the European Union and United States into an even more stringent sanctions regime in 2012 further crippled an already hamstrung industry. Iran’s crude exports dropped 40 percent to 1.5 mb/d in 2012 and sunk to an average of just 1 mb/d by 2014 as foreign markets closed, international investment evaporated, and supply chains withered.Now, as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action nuclear deal ushers Iran back into international energy markets, its oil and gas industry is poised to reach its full potential. The impacts promise to be profound and wide reaching as oil sales provided 80 percent of Iran’s export earnings and 60 percent of its state revenues in 2013. With Iranian oil production and exports already rising following the nuclear deal, this paper examines scenarios for Iran’s full reentry into international oil and gas markets.
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11
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