March 3, 2020
Announcing WACA's Partnership with the George W. Bush Institute
Speaker Opportunity!
Choose Freedom: America's Role in the World and a Democracy-Focused U.S. Foreign Policy
In 2020, the George W. Bush Institute 's Human Freedom Initiative and potential partners will host forums across the U.S. on the topic of America’s role in the world vis-à-vis supporting freedom and democracy abroad. As such, the Human Freedom Initiative is partnering with the World Affairs Councils of America to tap into the Council Network reach across the country and, particularly, into America’s heartland.

At each location, potential speakers include Human Freedom Fellow and Georgetown University Professor Nicole Bibbins Sedaca , a member of the Human Freedom Advisory Council , or a member of the Human Freedom staff. Speakers would participate in a moderated discussion on America’s role in the world and supporting freedom and democracy abroad, followed by a Q&A session. The target audience would be community leaders and influencers from civic groups, faith communities, local government, business leaders, etc. While the Bush Institute would cover all travel and accommodations for speakers, Councils would work with the Institute to develop invite lists, connect with influencers in each location, and provide in-kind support such as discussion venues.

Interested parties should email Chris Walsh , Senior Program Manager for the Human Freedom Initiative, at
As the world experiences its thirteenth consecutive year of democratic regression, skeptics have raised questions about the future of democracy and human rights around the world. As authoritarian governments continue to challenge stable and newer democracies and commit human rights abuses, these developments have also prompted debate about what role the United States should play in advancing democracy and human rights globally. 

The George W. Bush Institute’s Human Freedom Initiative has authored a call to action paper aimed at revitalizing bipartisan consensus on freedom, democracy, and human rights as key components of U.S. foreign policy and America’s role in the world. This paper offers policy recommendations to the U.S. government, civil society, private sector, and academia on doing so; however, the case should also be made to the broader American public and expand conversations about America’s role in the world beyond the beltway to build more informed constituencies. This Op-Ed from the paper’s author, Nicole Bibbins Sedaca, outlines the major themes.
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