What We Do


CSO’s mission is to anticipate, prevent, and respond to conflict that undermines U.S. national interests. The bureau implements this mission in two complementary ways: through data-driven analysis and forward deploying stabilization advisors to conflict zones. The objective is to inform and execute U.S. strategy, policy, and programs on conflict prevention and stabilization.

CSO’s expertise focuses on three key lines of effort: 1) political instability; 2) security sector stabilization; and 2) countering violent extremism (CVE). CSO collaborates with regional and functional bureaus, DOD, and USAID, and details stabilization advisors to posts and Geographic Combatant Commands (COCOMS) requiring specialized expertise.

Date: 2019 Description: Political Instability. - State Dept ImagePolitical Instability. CSO maps country conditions, analyzes local dynamics, assesses risks/threats, and forecasts future zones of instability. An essential tool is the Instability Monitoring Assessment Platform (iMAP), which collects, visualizes, and analyzes data on political instability and conflict trends across the globe. CSO also supports local partners in implementing stabilization programs. CSO’s work has contributed to peace-process negotiations, mitigating election violence, sanctions assessments, and policy decisions
Date: 2019 Description: Security Sector Stabilization. - State Dept ImageSecurity Sector Stabilization. The proliferation of militia and breakdown of national armies remains a key impediment to stabilizing fragile and failed states. CSO helps stabilize security sectors by identifying, mapping, and analyzing militia influence, and supporting disarmament demobilization, and reintegration programs. These efforts inform policies on detention, prosecution, or rehabilitation
Date: 2019 Description: Countering Violent Extremism - State Dept ImageCountering Violent Extremism. These efforts aim to reduce the recruitment and radicalization of violent extremists in areas of critical U.S. national interest. CSO collaborates with the Office of Counter Terrorism to provide research, analysis, and monitoring and evaluation of regional programs. CSO identifies at-risk individuals, vulnerable communities, and CVE influencers.