Carnegie Mellon University


Kiron SkinnerKiron K. Skinner, Director, Institute for Politics and Strategy; Director, Institute for Strategic Analysis; Director, Center for International Relations and Politics; Faculty Director, Carnegie Mellon University Washington Semester Program

Carnegie Mellon University derives its intellectual distinction from research across disciplines as well as from the application of basic science to issues of public policy. Firmly situated in this long-standing tradition, the Center for International Relations and Politics (CIRP) uses analytical social science and interdisciplinary research to better understand, explain, anticipate, and solve public policy problems. CIRP is formally associated with the Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences, the College of Engineering, and the School of Computer Science. Faculty and students associated with CIRP are drawn from these academic units as well as from the Tepper School of Business. In addition, CIRP is becoming increasingly active in joint initiatives with research centers throughout the United States.

The Center for International Relations and Politics emerged in connection with my directorship of CMU's first full-scale undergraduate teaching program in international relations, introduced in the 1999-2000 academic year. Over time, this burgeoning undergraduate major led to the establishment of CIRP, which has evolved into a university hub for teaching, research, and policy work on domestic and international issues.  In this way, CIRP serves a key role at Carnegie Mellon. Mindful of the unique convening power entrusted to me by the Carnegie Mellon community throughout the years, I look forward to continuing my work with university administrators, faculty, and students as I further develop this center.

Designed to express the vibrancy of CIRP at Carnegie Mellon University, this site is your guide to the research, teaching, cocurricular activities, and intellectual partnerships the center undertakes as it seeks to contribute to a better understanding of public policy issues in the nation and the world.  I encourage CMU students and faculty as well as statesmen, policy makers, journalists, interested citizens, and scholars throughout the world to review this site and join my colleagues and me in applying analytical social science and interdisciplinary scholarship to all aspects of the public policy process.

Dr. Kiron Skinner has been named senior policy adviser to U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Skinner also will serve as director of policy planning. Skinner has previously advised several presidential candidates and was named to the Department of Defense’s Policy Board in 2017. See the CMU announcement here.

The former president of Costa Rica, Laura Chinchilla, visited CMU on November 1, 2017. Pictured from left to right: Interim President Farnam Jahanian, Dr. Kiron Skinner, and President Laura Chinchilla. 

Colin Clarke

Dr. Colin Clarke, Assistant Teaching Professor, recently published an article in Foreign Policy titled, "The Post-Caliphate Caliph."