Rachel Bronson

Rachel Bronson

Dr. Rachel Bronson
Author, Scholar

About Rachel Bronson

Executive Director and Publisher of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists located at the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago.

As Of: February 2015


Rachel Bronson is the senior fellow for global energy at The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, where she directs the Council’s activities on the changing US energy landscape and its implications for US foreign policy, national security, and economic competitiveness.

Prior to this, she served for seven years as the Council’s vice president for studies, and programs and studies. In that capacity she regularly raised over a million dollars a year to support the Council’s policy research, recruited top-flight strategic thinkers, and helped put the Council onto the University of Pennsylvania’s 2013 global think tank ranking–including #11 “think tank to watch” and #5 “best policy study/report by a think tank.”

Prior to her coming to Chicago, Bronson served as senior fellow and director of Middle East studies at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York. Earlier positions include senior fellow for international security affairs at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, fellow at Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, and adjunct professor at Columbia University. Dr. Bronson’s book, Thicker than Oil: America’s Uneasy Partnership with Saudi Arabia (Oxford University Press, 2006), has been translated into Japanese and published in paperback in June 2008.

Her writings have appeared in publications such as Foreign Policy, Foreign Affairs, The National Interest, The New York Times, the Washington Post, and The Chicago Tribune. She has commented widely on foreign affairs in outlets such as NPR, CNN, PBS NewsHour, The Charlie Rose Show, and The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. Bronson has served as a consultant to NBC News and the Center for Naval Analyses. She has testified before the Congressional Anti-Terrorist Finance Task Force, Congress’ Joint Economic Committee, and the 9/11 Commission.

In 2012, Bronson was named by Today’s Chicago Woman magazine as one of 100 Women to Watch. She was named by Crain’s Chicago Business as one of 20 Women to Watch in 2008. In 2003, Bronson was named a Carnegie Corporation Scholar. She earned a BA in history at the University of Pennsylvania and a MA and PhD in political science from Columbia University in 1997.

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As Of: 2007


Rachel Bronson is a senior fellow and Director of Middle East Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations where she is concluding research on her forthcoming book Thicker than Oil: The United States and Saudi Arabia, a History, under contract with Oxford University Press (2005). She co-directed the January 2003 report “Guiding Principles for US Post-Conflict Policy in Iraq,” co-sponsored by CFR and the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University. She has testified before Congress’ Joint Economic Committee on the topic of Iraq’s reconstruction, and the President’s 9-11 Commission on whether or not the US is involved in a “Clash of Civilizations.”

Dr. Bronson is the recipient of the Carnegie Corporation’s 2003 Carnegie Scholars award. She has served as a consultant to the Center for Naval Analyses, as a Senior Fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C., and as a Fellow at Harvard’s Center for Science and International Affairs. Her writing has appeared in publications such as Foreign Affairs, Survival, The New York Times and The International Herald Tribune. She has commented extensively in the media including CNN, BBC, NPR, Washingtonpost.com and al-Jazeera and is a consultant for NBC news. She received her doctorate from Columbia University in Political Science in 1997.

As Of: March 2005