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Brookings Fellow and Policy Director, Foreign Assistance Reform Project
Noam is a fellow in the Global Economy and Development program at Brookings and the policy director of the institution's Foreign Assistance Reform Project. Through his work on the project, he has researched and written about policies and politics related to revamping U.S. foreign aid and global development efforts. He is a founding member and principal of the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network and also served as a member of the Transatlantic Taskforce on Development, which was convened by the German Marshall Fund of the United States and the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Before coming to Brookings, he was in the civil service from 2003-2007 at the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Agency for International Development, where he worked on humanitarian affairs, reconstruction, conflict transformation and interagency coordination. In addition to his prior work with USAID in Sri Lanka and with Save the Children in Haiti, his overseas experience also includes his time as a Thomas J. Watson Foundation Fellow, when Unger carried out a project in Central America, South America, West Africa, South Asia and Southeast Asia. He has also previously worked in the private sector, focusing on software research and design as a linguistics analyst for StreamSage, Inc.
His work has been published by the Brookings Institution, the Center for Strategic & International Studies, The Stanley Foundation, and the Center for a New American Security. He has provided commentary through various media outlets, including, PBS, The Washington Post, LA Times, The Christian Science Monitor, USA Today, Foreign Policy, POLITICO and others. Unger is a term member at the Council on Foreign Relations. He earned his bachelor of arts in anthropology and religion from Swarthmore College. He holds a master’s in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School at Tufts University.