The KCD open pit gold mine, operated by Randgold, at the Kibali mining site in north-east Democratic Republic of Congo, 1 May 2014. REUTERS/Pete Jones
Media Release

Alexander Soros Donates $500,000 for Crisis Group Fellowships on the Economics of Conflict

The International Crisis Group is pleased to announce the launch of a new initiative on the Economics of Conflict, made possible by an initial challenge grant of $500,000 from Alexander Soros. This gift will strengthen Crisis Group’s capacity to address both the political and economic factors that can increase the risk of deadly conflict.

“In the face of retrenchment and declining support for the international system, Crisis Group’s intelligent approach to conflict resolution is essential”, said Alexander Soros. “I look forward to seeing how the Fellows advance our understanding of today’s changing global order, and hope this initial gift will inspire others to contribute toward expanding this important body of work”.

The focus of the first class of Fellows will be on two main issues: state corruption and the financing of non-state armed groups.

“This generous grant from Alex Soros comes at a critical moment, as economic strains are transforming global politics”, said Crisis Group President & CEO Jean-Marie Guéhenno. “This support enables us to introduce cutting-edge, data-driven analysis that will advance our work on conflict prevention in line with today’s challenges”.

Crisis Group, the world’s leading conflict prevention organisation, will partner with the Empirical Studies of Conflict Project (ESOC) on a two-year fellowship program aimed at recruiting the next generation of top conflict scholars with expertise in economics, political science, public policy and related fields. ESOC is a network of scholars using micro-level data to explore the causes and effects of political violence worldwide.

The Fellows will contribute directly to Crisis Group’s influential reporting and analysis, and will be mentored by ESOC scholars at Princeton University, Stanford University, Washington University, University of California San Diego, and other top institutions. The program will bring together Crisis Group, ESOC, and other relevant groups to exchange ideas, review findings and advance our recommendations.

Alexander Soros is the founder of the Alexander Soros Foundation, a grant-making organisation promoting civil rights, social justice, and education in the U.S. and abroad. He is a member of the Open Society Foundation’s Global Board and of the U.S. Programs Advisory Board, and also sits on the boards of Bend the Arc Jewish Action, Global Witness, Libraries Without Borders and the Gordon Parks Foundation. His writing has appeared in the Guardian, the Forward, the Miami Herald, Politico, Reuters, and the Sun-Sentinel. Soros holds a BA in history from New York University, and is currently pursuing a doctorate in late modern European history at the University of California, Berkeley.

Crisis Group is also delighted to announce that Alexander Soros has joined the Board of Trustees, effective 1 January 2017.

Crisis Group is an independent non-governmental organisation founded in 1995 to prevent wars and shape policies that will build a more peaceful world. For more information about our work, visit

Media contact:

Kavita Menon
Head of Communications & Outreach, North America
International Crisis Group
+1 212 813 0820

Subscribe to Crisis Group’s Email Updates

Receive the best source of conflict analysis right in your inbox.