Welcome to the FOCAL archive

The Canadian Foundation for the Americas (FOCAL) is no longer in operation. This website documents FOCAL's activities and accomplishments throughout its existence. Thank you for your interest in the work of FOCAL.

Hemispheric Think-Tank Initiative

The Hemispheric Think-Tank Initiative created a network of think-tanks from across the hemisphere that combined efforts to provide research and insight into the Fifth Summit of the Americas. The group aimed to reinforce and complement the efforts of official agencies by mobilizing needed intellectual and policy resources to inform the Summit process. Following the Fifth Summit a group of think-tanks met to discuss best practices, lessons learned and ways to move forward. These meetings sparked the creation of a task force to explore options for civil society consultation including public opinion polling.

This was a joint initiative of FOCAL and the Inter-American Dialogue (Washington, D.C.) with the support of the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), the Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), the OAS Summits of the Americas Secretariat and the Fifth Summit of the Americas Office of the Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago.

The Think-Tank Initiative conducted several meetings:

  • Ottawa, Canada, September 22, 2008:
  • Washington, D.C., United States, January 13, 2009;
  •  Port-of-Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, April 16, 2009;
  •  Bogotá, Colombia, October 15, 2009;
  •  Washington D.C., United States and Bogotá, Colombia, December 16, 2009.

Participating Institutions:  

U.N. Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC)
World Bank
OAS Summits of the Americas Secretariat
FLACSO Costa Rica
Centro de Investigación para el Desarrollo, Mexico
International Development Research Centre, Canada
APEC Study Center, University of San Diego, U.S.
Centro Brasileiro de Relações Internacionais,
Centre for International Governance Innovation,
Center for Global Development,
Fundación para la Educación Superior y el Desarrollo,
Caribbean Policy Research Institute, Jamaica
University of the West Indies, Jamaica
Asociación de Investigación y Estudios Sociales, Guatemala
George Washington University, U.S.
Alianza Cívica, Mexico


A View of the Hemisphere



Explore the link between governance and development.