About the European Council on Foreign Relations

  • ECFR is an award-winning international think-tank that aims to conduct cutting-edge independent research; provide a safe meeting space for policy-makers, activists and intellectuals to share ideas; offer a media platform to get Europeans talking about their role in the world. It was established in 2007 by a council of fifty founding members, chaired by Martti Ahtisaari, Joschka Fischer, and Mabel van Oranje, with initial funding from George Soros’s Open Society Foundations, the Communitas Foundation, Sigrid Rausing, Unicredit and Fride.

    Mark Leonard

    Director

    Mark Leonard is co-founder and Director of ECFR. He is author of two best-selling books - “Why Europe will run the 21st Century” and “What does China think?” – which have been published in over 20 languages. Mark has spent time in Washington and Beijing and was honoured as a ‘Young Global Leader’ of the World Economic Forum. He writes a regular syndicated column on global issues for Reuters and his essays appear regularly in publications including The Financial Times, Foreign Affairs, Le Monde, The New Statesman, The New York Times, Süddeutsche Zeitung, El País, Gazeta Wyborcza, and the Washington Post.

  • Inspired by the role American think-tanks played in helping the US move from isolationism to global leadership, ECFR’s founders set about creating a pan-European institution that could combine establishment credibility with intellectual insurgency. Today, it has over 50 staff from more than 20 countries, and receives funding from a wide range of charitable foundations, national governments, companies and private individuals.


    Dick Oosting

    Chief Executive

    Dick Oosting is Chief Executive of the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR). His many years of experience working in human rights and refugee organisations in different countries started in the 1970s when he co-ordinated Amnesty International’s first campaign against torture (an activity highlighted in Amnesty’s Nobel Peace Prize citation in 1977). Prior to joining ECFR in 2009 he spent ten years in Brussels heading Amnesty’s EU office and managing the Europe programme of the International Centre for Transitional Justice. Before that, he directed a Dutch child protection agency, the Dutch Refugee Council as well as serving as Deputy Secretary General of Amnesty International.

Board of Trustees
Carl Bildt (co-chair), Emma Bonino (co-chair), Mabel van Oranje (co-chair), Ian Clarkson, Lykke Friis, Timothy Garton Ash, Ivan Krastev, Andrew Puddephatt, Norbert Röttgen, Javier Solana, Martti Ahtisaari (chair emeritus), Joschka Fischer (chair emeritus)