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Carol Adelman

Director, Center for Global Prosperity

Dr. Carol Adelman is a Senior Fellow and Director of the Center for Global Prosperity (CGP) at Hudson Institute where she lectures, writes, and advises governments and media on economic growth, foreign aid, global philanthropy, and international healthcare issues. She developed and oversees the main publication of the CGP, the annual Index of Global Philanthropy and Remittances, the first comprehensive compilation of U.S. and other donor countries’ international private giving to the developing world. The Index documents the magnitude of contributions from foundations, corporations, private and voluntary organizations, religious organizations, universities, and remittances from individuals, while reporting on new and innovative private giving trends and practices.

Dr. Adelman also oversaw the publication of another flagship CGP report, Philanthropic Freedom: A Pilot Study. The Center’s work is widely used by the U.S. Government, multilateral and bilateral government agencies, philanthropic institutions, the media, and academia. The Index was cited in Foreign Affairs as “a one stop compendium of the best available data on global philanthropy.”

From 1971 to 1981, Dr. Adelman was a career foreign service officer with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), living and working in Africa, Latin America, and Asia. She worked extensively with foreign governments, NGOs and companies involved in economic development projects and philanthropic programs. She also advised governments on policy reforms to support private initiatives and political reforms to promote democratic growth.

From 1982 to 1988, Dr. Adelman focused on global economic and health issues. She completed research for her doctorate in public health and examined the causes of infant mortality in the barrios of Lima, Peru. She also consulted for the American Red Cross and monitored famine needs in Africa while assisting in fundraising for the African drought. From 1988 to 1993, Dr. Adelman was a presidential appointee, serving as assistant administrator at USAID, in charge of all foreign aid programs to Asia, the Middle East, and Central and Eastern Europe when the Berlin Wall fell. She supervised over 400 employees with a budget of over $3 billion.

From 1993 to 1998, she headed international services for two different consulting companies, one private and one publicly held, where she identified investment opportunities and capital for private U.S. companies in overseas hospitals, insurance companies, and healthcare systems. Dr. Adelman identified U.S. partners for joint ventures and projects in Brazil, Argentina, and Malaysia. She also conducted a major evaluation of public and private sector programs developed by the Inter-American Development Bank.

From 1998 to the present, Dr. Adelman has conducted research and writing at the Hudson Institute where she and her Hudson colleagues also assist nonprofits and corporations in developing and communicating their global philanthropy programs. She is also President of an executive leadership training company and teaches leadership at the Wharton Business School, University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Adelman has served as Vice Chair of the Advisory Committee on Voluntary Foreign Aid for USAID and Vice Chair of the Helping to Enhance the Livelihood of People (HELP) Commission, a bipartisan congressional commission established to provide high-level oversight and evaluation of the U.S. foreign aid program. She is a past Vice Chair and current board member of the Atlantic Council, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and serves on the boards of Freedom House and the American Shakespeare Center. Dr. Adelman is a recipient of the Heloise Waislitz Visiting Fellowship in Philanthropy at the Asia Pacific Centre for Social Investment and Philanthropy, Swinburne University, Melbourne, Australia. She is also past president and current board member of Capital Partners for Education, a charity that provides scholarships and mentors for low-income students in the D.C. metropolitan area.

Dr. Adelman has appeared on radio and television, including CNN, PBS, Fox News, C-Span, and BBC, and is a frequent commentator, lecturer, and moderator at universities, associations, and international conferences including the Aspen Institute, the World Economic Forum at Davos, the Council on Foreign Relations, and the Fortune 500 Brainstorming conference. She was featured on PBS’s The Great Decisions Television Series episode on Philanthropy and Rise of Global Giving and was interviewed in the Financial Times.

Dr. Adelman is the author/editor of numerous works on economic growth, foreign aid, trade, and global health for national publications and technical journals. She has written for the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Foreign Affairs, and International Herald Tribune. She has published a book, International Regulation: New Rules in a Changing World Order, and contributed a chapter to International Development: Ideas, Experiences, and Prospects, a comprehensive review of economic development supported by Canada’s International Development Research Centre.

Dr. Adelman holds a Doctorate and Masters of Public Health from John Hopkins University and a Masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown University.


In the Media


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Philanthropy for Civil Society in Pakistan April 17th Event

Doing It Their Way: How Emerging Economies Give and Invest Globally

Philanthropic Freedom: “If You Can'’t Measure It, You Can'’t Improve It.

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Media Coverage

Carol Adelman quoted in Devex on the global development process

The Center for Global Prosperity’s Index of Philanthropic Freedom 2015 featured in the Chronicle of Philanthropy, Philanthropy News Digest, and Pro Bono Australia

Philanthropic Freedom: A Pilot Study cited in Forbes Online on philanthropic giving in the US

Center for Global Prosperity’s 2013 Index of Global Philanthropy and Remittances cited in Foreign Policy Magazine

Center for Global Prosperity’s 2013 Index of Global Philanthropy and Remittances cited in Global Post

Carol Adelman quoted in IDRC on philanthropic giving and the developing world

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