The has created a U.S.-Canadian Studies Institute with an advisory board led by noted Canadian entrepreneur and researcher Dr. Angus Reid.

"The U.S.-Canada Institute at the Wilson Center will explore one of America's most important bilateral relationships and bring more visibility and attention to some of the broader issues between the U.S. and Canada," said Center director Lee Hamilton. "The United States and Canada have cooperated closely on international diplomacy, regional defense, and cross-border environmental issues; and trade between our two countries is the most extensive between two countries ever. Yet despite this, I am concerned that the U.S.-Canada relationship is not getting the attention in the United States that is at all proportional to its importance."

The institue aims to bring the latest and best thinking and scholarly work on U.S.-Canada issues to Washington to inform primarily the policymaking community but also the broader public and corporate community. "To most Americans, Canada is, in the words of former ambassador James Blanchard, the invisible world next door," Hamilton added.

Dr. Reid is chairman and CEO of Canada's largest market research firm, based in Vancouver. He formed the company, which bears his name, twenty years ago after a short career in academia. The Angus Reid Group recently announced that it is joining the Paris-based Ipsos group of companies, one of the world's largest market and social research companies.

Other members of the U.S.-Canadian Studies Institute's advisory board include U.S. Ambassador to Canada, Gordon Giffin, and former ambassadors James Blanchard, Peter Teeley, and Edward Ney. The board also includes the current Canadian ambassador to the U.S., Raymond Chrétien, and former ambassador Derek Burney. The board will serve as a long-term strategic planning group for the project and will actively seek funding for the institute's operations.

"Dr. Reid is one of the most well-respected and knowledgeable people in Canada about Canadian views on a wide range of public policy topics," said Hamilton. "He will be an enormous help to our Center as we develop and expand the U.S.-Canadian Studies Institute."

"This initiative is not about academics talking to academics. Our goal is to bridge the gap between the world of ideas and the world of policy. This project fills a much-needed gap in Washington and will do a lot to enhance understanding of Canada in the U.S.," Dr. Reid said.