U.S. Relations with the Islamic World

About the Project

The Project on U.S. Relations with the Islamic World, housed within the Center for Middle East Policy at Brookings, conducts public policy research and convenes briefings, panel discussions and major international conferences focusing on the critical issues facing the United States and the Muslim world.

The project seeks to engage and inform policymakers, practitioners and the broader public on developments in Muslim countries and communities and on the nature of their relationship with the United States. Together with the affiliated Brookings Doha Center in Qatar, it sponsors a range of events, research projects and publications designed to educate, encourage frank dialogue and build positive partnerships between the United States and the Muslim world.


As the largest, most widely cited think tank in the U.S., Brookings has had major impact on policymaking for nearly a century. The Project on U.S. Relations with the Islamic World’s own impact activities include:

  • Events with leading public and private officials
  • Policy-relevant research
  • Briefings with policymakers
  • Frequent media commentary and analysis


  • The annual U.S.-Islamic World Forum, which brings together key leaders in the fields of politics, business, media, academia and civil society from across the Muslim world and the United States for much-needed discussion and dialogue. The 2010 Forum included a video message from President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hilary Clinton spoke at both the 2010 and 2011 forums.
  • Brookings Analysis Papers and Monographs

The underlying goal of the project is to continue the Brookings Institution’s original mandate to serve as a bridge between scholarship and public policy. It seeks to bring new knowledge to the attention of decision-makers and opinion-leaders, as well as afford scholars, analysts and the public a better insight into policy issues.


Our team includes experienced and knowledgeable scholars conducting original research and bringing keen insight and fresh perspectives to bear on the critical challenges facing the Middle East today and on the policy choices facing American and regional decision makers.

Fellow and Director: William McCants
Fellow: Shadi Hamid
Nonresident Senior Fellows: Shibley TelhamiStephen R. Grand, Cynthia Schneider
Nonresident Fellows: J.M. BergerH.A. Hellyer
Project Manager: Anne Peckham
Project Coordinator: Elizabeth Pearce

The project conveners are Martin IndykTamara Cofman WittesShibley Telhami and Bruce RiedelSalman Shaikh is the director of the Brookings Doha Center.