The Proxy Wars Initiative is a Carnegie Corporation Project dedicated to peace & security. Led by Dr. Ranj Alaaldin & Dr. Ariel Ahram, PWI convenes high-level decision makers and influencers, the private sector, scholars and practitioners to find lasting solutions to conflict and instability.

"Our goal is to convene the most diverse and robust network of decision-makers, practitioners and scholars from across the globe to produce cutting-edge analysis and provide immediate policy proposals that can achieve lasting solutions to the most pressing challenges of our time."


Dr. Ranj Alaaldin. Director, Proxy Wars Initiative






First Regional Dialogue: Iraqi Kurdistan

Director's Op-Ed in the New York Times

Dr. Ranj Alaaldin Speaks to Prime Minister Barzani & Deputy-Prime Minister Talabani

Dr. Ranj Alaaldin Chairs a Panel Discussion on militias at the Rome MED Dialogue 2019 

Dr. Ranj Alaaldin on the fallout from Qassem Soleimani's death 

Second Regional Dialogue: Muscat

Dr. Ariel Ahram publishes new book

PWI Op-Ed: How the U.S. Can Escape Proxy Wars

Dr. Ariel Ahram launches his book at the Wilson Center 

Proxy Wars Initiative quoted in the New York Times 

Tensions Between the US & Iran



Dalia Dassa Kaye

RAND Corporation

Wladimir Wan Wilgenburg

Author & Journalist

Ranj Alaaldin

Proxy Wars Initiative

Elie Abouaoun


Alexandra Stark

New America Foundation

Emad Badi

Atlantic Council

Maria Fantappie

Humanitarian Dialogue

Inna Rudolf

King's College London



Emad Badi: Proxy conflict in Libya & Covid-19

Sara Plana: Why Proxy Wars Endure & Why They End

Irene Constantini: Proxy-Sponsor Relations in Civil-Wars


Kamaran Palani: US & Rojava: a Fluid Patron-Client Relationship


Ariel Ahram: Hybrid Security, Frozen Conflicts, and Peace in MENA

Noel Anderson: Proxy Wars: How they end, and how relationships breakdown

David Pollock: Covid-19 & Proxy Conflict in the Middle East


Osman Sert: Turkey and Proxy Conflict


André Bank: Proxy Relationships in Syria


Adam Baron: Covid-19 & the Conflict in Yemen

vladimir rauta.jpg

Vladimir Rauta: What makes proxy-sponsor relationships endure?

Irina Zviagelskaya: Russia & Proxy Conflict


PWI organised a high-level workshop in Dohuk, Iraqi Kurdistan in November 2019. Dohuk is just over an hour away from Mosul, where so-called Islamic State declared its self-proclaimed "Caliphate" in 2014. The city has since become a major hub for frontline humanitarian operations in post-conflict Iraqi towns and cities. It was a fitting location for a workshop that convened 40 participants from across the globe to discuss challenges to regional peace and security in the Middle East. Focused on policy proposals that could help alleviate and end conflict in the short and long-term, the workshop also included foresight and scenario planning sessions aimed at enabling robust and outside-the-box policies and strategies that drew on the respective expertise and disciplinary background of the participants.

More than 40 participants from across the globe

Show More




"The Proxy Wars Initiative is one of the most innovative conflict mediation and mitigation initiatives I have had the privilege of participating in. In these troubled times in Iraq and the Middle East, it is a critical platform that has delivered outside-the-box thinking for complex, multi-faceted challenges."


Ambassador Ramon Blecua. Former EU Ambassador to Iraq. 

"The Proxy Wars Initiative is one of the most pioneering and adaptive mediation platforms I have engage with. Through convening leading practitioners from across the globe the Initiative is able to generate valuable insights, cutting edge analysis and forward-looking recommendations for the region's most complex policy dilemmas."


Ms. Dareen Khalifa. Senior Analyst. International Crisis Group.  




© 2020 Proxy Wars Initiative