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Program The John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress

Henry A. Kissinger Program in Foreign Policy and International Relations

About the Program

The Kissinger Program establishes a non-partisan focus in the nation’s capital for the discussion of key issues in foreign affairs. The Program serves as a catalyst for the fresh analysis of foreign affairs in the global era by sustaining in perpetuity two appointments—the Kissinger Chair and the Kissinger Lecturer—and related programs that ensure that the subject of foreign affairs receives reflective and considered treatment each year in Washington, D.C.

Current Chair

Mark Leonard

Mark Leonard is co-founder and director of the European Council on Foreign Relations, the first pan-European think tank. His topics of focus include geopolitics and geoeconomics, Transatlantic relations, China, and European politics.
Leonard hosts the weekly podcast “Mark Leonards’s World in 30 Minutes” and writes a syndicated column on global affairs for Project Syndicate. Previously, he worked as director of foreign policy at the Centre for European Reform and as director of the Foreign Policy Centre, a think tank he founded at the age of 24 under the patronage of former British Prime Minister Tony Blair. In the 1990s, Leonard worked for the think tank Demos where his Britain™ report was credited with launching Cool Britannia. Mark has spent time in Washington, D.C. as a Transatlantic Fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the United States, and in Beijing as a visiting scholar at the Chinese Academy for Social Sciences.
He was Chairman of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Geoeconomics until 2016. He is a regular speaker and prolific writer and commentator on global issues, the future of Europe, China’s internal politics, and the practice of diplomacy and business in a networked world. His essays have appeared in publications such as Foreign Affairs, the Financial Times, the New York Times, Le Monde, Süddeutsche Zeitung, El Pais, Gazeta Wyborcza, Foreign Policy, the New Statesman, the Daily Telegraph, The Economist, Time, and Newsweek.
As well as writing and commenting frequently in the media on global affairs, Leonard is the author of best-selling books. His first book, “Why Europe Will Run the 21st Century,” was published in 2005 by Fourth Estate and translated into 19 languages. Leonard’s second book, “What Does China Think?” was published in 2008 by PublicAffairs and translated into 15 languages. He has also published the edited volume “Connectivity Wars” (European Council on Foreign Relations, 2016). In September 2021, his latest book on this topic “The Age of Unpeace. How Connectivity Causes Conflict” (Penguin) was released.

View past chairs

Kissinger Chair

The Kissinger Chair is appointed annually by the Librarian of Congress upon the recommendation of a selection committee consisting of representatives from the academic community and high-ranking foreign policy experts no longer in office. While in residence at the Library’s John W. Kluge Center, the Chair engages in research on foreign policy and international affairs that will lead to publication.

Kissinger Lecturer

The Kissinger Lecturer, who is distinct from the Kissinger Chair, is selected by the Librarian of Congress to deliver the biennial Kissinger Lecture, a high-profile address to congressional members and staff, diplomats, foreign policy experts, faculty from area universities, and the foreign policy community at-large.

The Setting

Uniquely situated for research, analysis, and serious discussion of America’s relation to the world, the Library of Congress offers facilities for scholars, universal collections spanning more than 470 languages, broad language and subject expertise of the Library staff, the central and neutral position of the Library on Capitol Hill, and the inspiring atmosphere of the magnificent Thomas Jefferson Building in which to examine the general subject of the United States and its relationship with the world.


The Kissinger Program is made possible by generous donations of the friends and admirers of Dr. Henry A. Kissinger, the 56th Secretary of State of the United States and a past recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Librarian of Congress James H. Billington announced the establishment of the Henry A. Kissinger Chair in Foreign Policy and International Relations at the Library of Congress on June 26, 2000, during the Library’s Bicentennial year. The Library of Congress holds a collection of Henry A. Kissinger’s papers covering his years of government service and donated to the Library in 1977.


Nominations are welcome for both the Kissinger Program appointments: the annual Kissinger Chair and the biennial Kissinger Lecturer. Nominations should be submitted via email to

Program Details

Research Areas

Foreign policy and international relations


By the Librarian of Congress


$13,500 per month

For More Information

The John W. Kluge Center
Phone: (202) 707-3302