Wilson Center Experts

Ian O Lesser

Public Policy Scholar
Global Europe Program

Southeast Europe
President, Mediterranean Advisors, LLC Adjunct Staff Member at RAND
Wilson Center Project(s):
"Re-shaping the U.S. – Turkish Strategic Relationship"
Sep 01, 2005
Mar 01, 2007

Dr. Lesser is president of Mediterranean Advisors, LLC, and Public Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, DC, where he leads a major project on the future of the U.S.-Turkish strategic relationship. He is also a senior advisor to the Luso-American Foundation in Lisbon, and an adjunct staff member at RAND. Prior to establishing Mediterranean Advisors, Dr. Lesser was vice president and director of studies at the Pacific Council on International Policy (the western partner of the Council on Foreign Relations). He came to the Pacific Council from RAND, where he spent over a decade as a senior analyst and research manager specializing in strategic studies and Mediterranean security. From 1994-1995, he was a member of the Secretary's Policy Planning Staff at the U.S. Department of State, responsible for Turkey, Southern Europe, North Africa, and the multilateral track of the Middle East peace process. A frequent commentator for international media, he has written extensively on international security issues. His recent books and policy reports include Security and Strategy in the Eastern Mediterranean (2006); Turkish Foreign Policy in an Age of Uncertainty (2003); Greece's New Geopolitics (2001); and Countering the New Terrorism (1999). Dr. Lesser was educated at the University of Pennsylvania, the London School of Economics, and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, and received his D.Phil from Oxford University. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the International Institute for Strategic Studies, the Atlantic Council, and the Advisory Board of the International Spectator (Rome), and has been a senior fellow of the Onassis Foundation.


International security and foreign policy; Turkey, Southern Europe and the Middle East; terrorism and counter-terrorism Policy

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