The prospect of a new administration taking office has always inspired Brookings scholars to come up with ideas for the consideration of the nation’s new president and his advisers, cabinet secretaries, and agency heads. We and our predecessors have focused on the challenges and opportunities facing an incoming chief executive 19 times, starting with Woodrow Wilson’s handover to Warren Harding in 1921, five years after our founding. Like all Brookings products, these suggestions for policymakers have reflected our scholars’ fact-based research, intellectual rigor, political independence, and the overall goal of improving governance. This year’s compilation—Brookings Big Ideas for America—is no exception.
The contents of this series and the accompanying book, under the organizational and editorial guidance of Michael O’Hanlon, were delivered to the incoming administration. The Institution does not have a party line on any issue. As you will see in the briefs that follow, our scholars have strong, diverse, and debatable views in the realms of their expertise. We hope these big ideas will contribute to elevating public discourse and illuminate areas where the American government can better serve its own constituents and reinforce its leadership in the world.
The text above is adapted from the foreword, by Strobe Talbott, to the book version of “Brookings Big Ideas for America.”