Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace

The Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace is a public policy research center and library located at Stanford University. U.S. President Herbert Hoover founded the Institution in 1919, saying that its mission was to “constantly and dynamically point the road to peace, to personal freedom, and to the safeguards of the American system.”

The Hoover Institution was originally a place to store important documents relating to World War I. This collection later grew into a much larger archive and library, forming a basis for the recruitment of scholars. Exhibits at the Hoover Institution library have covered both World Wars, the 1956 Hungarian uprising, and other seminal historical events.

Today, the Institution devotes its resources to the study of international affairs, international and domestic political economy, politics, and economics. Over 100 fellows contribute to the Institution, including the winners of three Nobel Prizes, four Presidential Medals of Freedom, and four National Humanities Medals; and numerous members of prestigious honorific societies.

Hoover has its own publisher, the Hoover Institution Press, which produces the quarterly periodicals Hoover Digest, Education Next, Policy Review, Defining Ideas, and China Leadership Monitor. The Press also publishes books by Hoover Institution fellows and affiliated scholars. Best-selling books include More Liberty Means Less Government by Walter Williams, and Barbarians Inside the Gates by Hoover Institution Senior Fellow Thomas Sowell.

The Institution has held dozens of past symposia and conferences on topics ranging from human rights in North Korea to Taiwanese democracy and domestic property rights. In 2009, Hoover fellows lent their expertise to national discussions about the economic crisis and the debate over health care reform.

Driving Good Public Policy Through Strong Research

The Hoover Institution organizes its scholars into separate “task forces” to work together on commonly defined projects. The subject mandates of these task forces include primary and secondary education, national security, property rights, and national and global markets. Additionally, specialized “institutional initiatives” further bolster the Institution’s research muscle.

One of Hoover’s biggest ongoing concerns is an Iran Democracy Project which aspires to help Westerners understand Iran, and to examine and “understand the process and prospects for democracy in Iran and the rest of the Middle East.” Hoover fellows working on this project have written original commentary and essays, including calls for more diplomatic engagement with Iran.

A second major Hoover Institution project concerns the Russian economy; it seeks to “provide scholarly discussion and analysis of Russia’s economy in global perspective.” To these ends, Hoover fellows produce original op-eds and essays, conduct interviews on TV and radio shows, and hold scholarly conferences. In tracking the Russian economy’s switch from communism to a liberal, more market-based system, one of the project’s important findings is that the Russian flat tax has achieved positive results for government tax receipts.