WASHINGTON – The Atlantic Council has named one of the world’s leading experts on global trends analysis, Mathew J. Burrows, as its new Foresight, Strategy, and Risks Initiative director in its Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security.

Burrows until recently served as a counselor and director at the US National Intelligence Council (NIC), where he played a key role in preparing National Intelligence Estimates and was the principal architect of the NIC’s highly regarded global trends work. 

A graduate of Cambridge University with a PhD in European History, Burrows previously served as an analyst for the Directorate of Intelligence with the CIA; as special assistant to UN Ambassador Richard Holbrooke; and as deputy national security advisor to US Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill. Read his full bio

“As Mat himself has written, we are facing an inflection point in history where leadership decisions will determine whether we enter a period of promise or of political and economic instability,” said Atlantic Council President & CEO Frederick Kempe. “Mat brings to the Atlantic Council cutting-edge capability not only in assessing global trends but also understanding the impact of today’s policy choices on their trajectory.” 

As director of the NIC’s Analysis and Production Staff, Burrows was the principal drafter of its Global Trends 2020 and 2025 reports, and the most recent Global Trends 2030: Alternative Worlds, the only official government document on global trends. Developed with support from the Atlantic Council and political, business, and academic leaders from around the world, the report received widespread recognition and praise in international media.

“Mat  has developed global partnerships that will bring the Atlantic Council’s Foresight, Strategy, and Risks Initiative to the forefront of developing solutions to the great challenges ahead,” said Atlantic Council Vice President and Scowcroft Center Director Barry Pavel.  

The Foresight, Strategy, and Risks Initiative seeks to enhance understanding of the policy implications of long-term global trends, disruptive change, and strategic shocks. The Initiative provides a hub for an expanding international community of global trends experts that seeks to inform decisionmaking in the United States and other key countries.


The Atlantic Council promotes constructive leadership and engagement in international affairs based on the central role of the Atlantic Community in meeting global challenges.

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