At ALI, we believe that the values of good governance and rule of law, robust international alliances and institutions, and inclusive and sustainable growth should be the underpinning of America’s foreign policy and global economic engagement.  We believe that pursuing development, trade and diplomatic policies guided by these values will result in better, more sustainable outcomes, both for the U.S. and globally. 


Rule of law, good governance and democracy are interlinked and mutually reinforcing. Democracy, paired with fair and equal application of the law is necessary for strong, sustained economic growth. Good governance, defined as how a government is elected and oversighted, respect for institutions, both from government and citizens, and the effective delivery of public goods, is a key requirement to a country’s development. Nations with trustworthy, efficient legal systems, are more resilient to internal threats, such as terrorism, and are stronger and more reliable economic and diplomatic partners for the United States. Countries with functioning and transparent governments, strong rule of law, and transparent, ethical governments, create an environment where business and foreign investment can flourish. 

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The U.S. cannot go it alone in the world— having strong and robust international alliances and institutions are critical to sustaining global security and prosperity. While many of these institutions need to be strengthened and reformed, they form an essential backbone to the global set of rules that has kept the peace for more than seventy years, and brought millions out of poverty.


Pursuing inclusive and sustainable development means promoting policies which recognize:

  • that rising inequality within and between nations is causing social and economic problems and undermining efforts to eradicate poverty, and posing threats to national security

  • that climate change threatens to roll back development gains and force millions back into poverty

  • and that promoting equality based on gender, race and sexual orientation leads to faster growth and stronger societies