Strategic Goals and Results
Strategic Goal 1: Achieving Peace and Security
Secretary Rice meets with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari in Bagdad, Iraq, January 2008. Department of State
Preserve international peace by preventing regional conflicts and transnational crime, combating terrorism and weapons of mass destruction, and supporting homeland security and security cooperation.
Public Benefit. The United States promotes peace, liberty and prosperity for all people, and ensuring security is central to achieving peace. The U.S. Government directly confronts threats to national and international security from terrorism, weapons proliferation, failed or failing states, and political violence. By enforcing compliance with arms control, nonproliferation, and disarmament agreements through diplomacy, political and economic sanctions, and physical interdiction, we ensure our national security and the security of the global community. In doing so, we strengthen U.S. national security as well as the capability of the U.S. Government and of international partners to prevent or mitigate conflict, stabilize countries in crisis, promote regional stability, protect civilians, and promote the just application of government and law. Our security is best guaranteed when our friends and neighbors are secure, free, prosperous, and at peace.
In the U.S. Government’s efforts to protect American citizens and our national interests overseas, our strategic priorities include: fighting transnational crime; countering terrorism; combating weapons of mass destruction; supporting stabilization operations activities and security sector reforms; supporting counternarcotics activities; sponsoring conflict mitigation and reconciliation; and ensuring homeland security.
- NATO expanded its Training Mission in Iraq to include Air Force/Navy staff officer, border security, and advanced forensics training and handed over significant aspects of its officer and non-commissioned officer academy training to the Iraqi government.
- The Department further developed the U.S.- Poland bilateral security relationship with a ballistic missile defense agreement.
Strategic Goal 2: Governing Justly and Democratically
An ethnic Albanian woman holds a girl who helps her to cast her ballot on the rerun of the parliamentary elections in Saraj, Macedonia.
Advance the growth of democracy and good governance, including civil society, the rule of law, respect for human rights, political competition, and religious freedom.
Public Benefit. The U.S. Government supports just and democratic governance for three distinct and related reasons: as a matter of principle; as a contribution to U.S. national security; and as a cornerstone of our broader development agenda. Governments that accept the twin principles of majority rule and individual rights, respond to the needs of their people, and govern by rule of law, are more likely to conduct themselves responsibly toward other nations. Effective and accountable democratic states are also best able to promote broad-based and sustainable prosperity. The U.S. Government goal is to promote and strengthen effective democracies and assist countries in moving along a continuum toward democratic consolidation. Our programs encompass the strategic priority areas of maintaining rule of law and human rights, good governance, political competition and consensus-building, and civil society.
- The Department of State continues to advise Turkmenistan on its Law on Religion and assisted in registering two additional religious groups.
- The Department of State partnered with major apparel brands and retailers, investment firms, and non-governmental organizations to eliminate the worst forms of child labor in Uzbekistan’s cotton sector.
Strategic Goal 3: Investing in People
President Bush poses with children as he visits the Mercy Centre of the Human Development Foundation in Bangkok, Thailand. AP Photo/Gerald Herbert
Improve health, education, and other social services to help nations create sustainable improvements in the well-being and productivity of their citizens.
Public Benefit. Disease and lack of education destroy lives, ravage societies, destabilize regions, and cheat future generations of prosperity and participation in democracy. By supporting Presidential Initiatives and numerous programs that integrate economic growth with social development we are extending the basic values American citizens hold dear: good health; access to quality education; and protection for vulnerable populations.
The U.S. Government strives to improve child, maternal, and reproductive health, reduce the risk of infectious disease, and increase access to improved drinking water and sanitation services in developing countries. Critical interventions combat HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, polio, pneumonia and diarrhea, which are leading causes of illness and death throughout the developing world. Mothers and children are especially vulnerable and are therefore two special target groups for most of these interventions. As an integral part of health programming, U.S. Government programs strengthen local capacity in disease outbreak detection and response, strengthen delivery of health services, essential drugs and commodities, and support advances in health technology.
- Through the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) program, the Department has aided in the prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission services for women during nearly 12.7 million pregnancies.
- More than 22.3 million people benefit from malaria prevention measures, including Insecticide-Treated Nets and/or Indoor Residual Spraying.
Strategic Goal 4: Promoting Economic Growth and Prosperity
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice shakes hands with Colombian Foreign Minister Jaime Bermudez after participating in a signing ceremony on renewable fuels, in Washington, D.C. AP Photo/Gerald Herbert
Strengthen world economic growth and protect the environment, while expanding opportunities for U.S. businesses and ensuring economic and energy security for the nation.
Public Benefit. The U.S. Government goal is to achieve rapid, sustained, and broad-based economic growth for the United States, its trading partners, and developing countries. Global economic growth is a key U.S. foreign policy priority and is essential for the reduction and eventual elimination of extreme poverty, poor health, and inadequate education among developing countries. Countries that offer their citizens hope for increasing prosperity are less prone to extremism, more inclined to favor democracy, more willing to settle disputes peacefully, and more likely to be constructive partners with the United States in the international community.
The United States derives enormous benefits from a stable, resilient, and growing world economy and plays a leadership role to promote economic growth and prosperity. Open market policies have lifted standards of living and helped millions of people around the world escape the grip of poverty. These policies have shown themselves time and time again to be the surest path to creating jobs, increasing commerce, and fostering progress.
- The Department established Open Skies Agreements with Australia, Croatia, and Kenya.
- The Department of State contributed to reducing the median number of days it takes to start a business in African countries to 37 days, 2 days less than last year.
Strategic Goal 5: Providing Humanitarian Assistance
A Bangladeshi receives supplies from Hospital Corpsman 1st Class Sam Sanethavong in the wake of a tropical cyclone, in Rangabali, Bangladesh. AP Photo/U.S. Navy, Sgt. Ezekiel R. Kitandwe
Minimize the human costs of displacement, conflicts, and natural disasters to save lives and alleviate suffering.
Public Benefit. The Department of State and USAID are the lead U.S. Government agencies in responding to complex humanitarian emergencies and natural disasters overseas. The United States commitment to humanitarian response demonstrates America’s compassion for victims of natural disasters, armed conflict, forced migration, persecution, human rights violations, widespread health and food insecurity, and other threats. The strength of this commitment derives from both our common humanity and our responsibility as a global leader. It requires urgent responses to emergencies; concerted efforts to address hunger and protracted crises; and planning to build capacity to prevent and mitigate the effects of conflict and disasters.
U.S. humanitarian responses to population displacement and human-made disasters complement efforts to promote democracy and human rights. The United States provides substantial resources and guidance through international and nongovernmental organizations for worldwide humanitarian programs, with the objective of saving lives and minimizing suffering in the midst of crises, increasing access to protection, promoting shared responsibility, and coordinating funding and implementation strategies. Our strategic priorities include: providing protection, assistance, and solutions; preventing and mitigating disasters; and promoting orderly and humane means for migration management.
- The 60,192 refugees resettled in the U.S. represent a 25% increase over FY 2007 refugee admissions levels.
- In FY 2008, 92% of foreign governments increased their efforts to detect, investigate, prosecute and prevent trafficking in persons as well as to protect and assist the victims with Department of State-funded anti-trafficking projects.
Strategic Goal 6: Promoting International Understanding
Public Diplomacy Envoy Michelle Kwan works with a young skater at a skating clinic in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Department of State
Foster mutual understanding through a two-way flow of people, ideas, and information to create peaceful and productive relationships between the United States and other countries.
Public Benefit. American values are the foundation of our international engagement. Public perceptions of the U.S. directly affect our ability to achieve our foreign policy and development assistance objectives, making the international exchange of people, ideas and information vital to the security of the United States. Public diplomacy and public affairs functions are premised on the belief that overseas publics who are well-informed about the United States and its policies can positively influence public policy. Accordingly, the Department is expanding the scope of public diplomacy by engaging younger and broader audiences around the world, with particular emphasis on youth and key influencers in the Arab and Muslim worlds. We are tailoring programs and messages to reach these targets, using multiple channels of communication and interaction, both old and new, to expand outreach to overseas audiences, providing aggressive, proactive advocacy of U.S. policies and objectives. We also are seeking to better coordinate interagency public diplomacy activities aimed at developing and communicating USG messages across the globe.
- Nearly 300 current and former heads of state and government are alumni of the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) and roughly 50% of current world leaders are IVLP alumni.
- In FY 2008, the Department of State engaged more than 24,000 foreign secondary school students, many from under-served communities, in its various programs.
Strategic Goal 7: Strengthening Consular and Management Capabilities
U.S. Ambassador William R. Timken gestures as he stands on the roof of the new embassy building in Berlin, Germany. AP Photo/Johannes Eisele, Pool
Assist Americans citizens to travel, conduct business and live abroad securely, and ensure a high quality workforce supported by modern, secure infrastructure and operational capabilities.
Public Benefit. The Department of State commitment to and role in protecting America’s homeland, in collaboration with the Department of Homeland Security and other agencies, is reflected in a shared vision that includes: improved technology and efficiency at ports of entry and in visa processing; more secure travel documents for the 21st century; and smarter screening technology for government officials to use at home and abroad. In addition, the Department has the responsibility of protecting and providing a wide range of services for U.S. citizens while they are overseas. Approximately four million Americans reside abroad, and Americans make about 60 million trips outside the United States every year. As the Department continually enhances the integrity of the U.S. passport, it also maintains the highest standards of excellence in customer service.
In strengthening management capabilities, the Department pursues human resource initiatives aimed at building, deploying, and sustaining a knowledgeable, diverse, and high-performing workforce. The Department also develops and maintains programs that enhance the professionalism of that workforce, such as training to foster foreign language proficiency, public diplomacy expertise, and improved leadership and management skills. The Department of State provides and maintains secure, safe, and functional facilities for its employees in the United States, and overseas for both State employees and those of other agencies. Its diplomatic security programs protect both people and national security information. Supporting diplomacy through efficient and effective information technology is another area of management focus, as is the provision of world-class financial services. As more and more new embassy compounds are completed overseas, the Department and USAID are taking advantage of increased opportunities for joint management platforms.
- 100% of all passport applications were processed within 25 days of receipt and a total of 15.9 million travel documents were issued.
- The Foreign Service Institute increased the number of distance learning students by 37% in order to reach Department of State employees worldwide with greater resource efficiency.