Strengthening the U.S.-Pacific Islands Partnership

March 4 – 5, 2019
The Center for Strategic and International Studies, in partnership with the United States Department of State, was pleased to present a conference on “Strengthening the U.S.-Pacific Islands Partnership.” This gathering of key thinkers from the United States and the Pacific came at an important time for relations between our countries. Geopolitically, traditional power dynamics in the Pacific and in the broader Indo-Pacific region are in flux, and it is important that we assess what these developments mean for our partnerships now and into the future. Meanwhile, we face urgent challenges that we must confront together, such as the impacts of climate change, illegal fishing and maritime security, challenges for governance and the liberal international order, and the need to expand infrastructure and connectivity across the region. This conference addressed a complex set of challenges and develop fresh, practical ideas for deepening the U.S.-Pacific Islands partnership.

This event was made possible with support from the U.S. Department of State.

Whitley Saumweber
Director, Stephenson Ocean Security Project, and Senior Associate (Non-Resident), Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative
Gregory B. Poling
Senior Fellow and Director, Southeast Asia Program and Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative

W. Patrick Murphy

Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs U.S. Department of State

Michael Goldman

Charge d’Affaires U.S. Embassy Suva

Gretchen Alther

Senior Leadership Development Specialist, Leadership Program, Professional Development Program, East West Center

Daniel Bob

Fellow, Reischauer Center for East Asian Studies, Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies

Tess Newton Cain, Principal

TNC Pacific Consulting

Sean E. Callahan

Deputy Assistant Administrator for Program Operations, Bureau for Legislative and Public Affairs, USAID

Bredina Drollet

Director’s Advisor Asian Development Bank

Rajesh Chandra

Former Vice-Chancellor and President The University of the South Pacific

Joji Dumukoro Washington

Senior Defense Advisor Ministry of Defense, Fiji

L. Gordon Flake

CEO, Perth USAsia Centre

Lori Forman

Development Advisor and Professor Asia-Pacific, Center for Security Studies

Iati Iati

Senior Lecturer Victoria University of Wellington

Risu Kalotiti

Young Pacific Leader

Peter Kenilorea

Former Permanent Secretary Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade, Solomon Islands

Bruce Klingner

Senior Research Fellow, The Heritage Foundation

Makalai Koloamatangi

Associate Professor, Massey University

Esther Lavu

Deputy Director, Papua New Guinea National Research Institute

Jim Loi

Partner & Chief Operating Officer, The Asia Group

Alan Marbou

Speaker of the House, Koror State Legislature, Palau

Walter Russell Mead

Ravenel B. Curry III Distinguished Fellow in Strategy and Statesmanship Hudson Institute

Timoci Natuva

Director General National Security and Defence Council Secretariat, Fiji

Alfred Oehlers

Professor Asia-Pacific, Center for Security Studies

Cristelle Pratt

Deputy Secretary General, Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat

Patricia Sachs-Cornish

Chief Advisor to the Director General Pacific Community

Navneel Sharma

Director for Africa, Americas, Middle East, Europe, and Russia Burea Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Fiji

Pula Toafa

Coordinator National Council of Women, Tuvalu

Nicole Yamase

Young Pacific Leader

Viliame Wilikilagi

Regional Security Adviser, Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat

Amy Searight