Janine Wedel writes about power, influence, and public policy through the unique lens of a social anthropologist. A professor in the School of Public Policy at George Mason University and senior research fellow at the New America Foundation, Wedel is the first anthropologist to win the Grawemeyer Award for Ideas Improving World Order.
After nearly 30 years studying communist and post-communist societies, Wedel has turned some of her energies to the United States. Her new book, Shadow Elite: How the World's New Power Brokers Undermine Democracy, Government, and the Free Market, charts a new system of power and influence at the dawn of the 21st century. The book received a starred review in Publishers Weekly and was Arianna's January 2010 Book Club selection for The Huffington Post. In addition to Shadow Elite and the prize-winning Collision and Collusion: The Strange Case of Western Aid to Eastern Europe, she has published The Unplanned Society (1992) and The Private Poland (1986), likened by The Christian Science Monitor to Hedrick Smith's The Russians.
Wedel has contributed congressional testimony, scholarly articles, and opinion pieces to more than a dozen major outlets, including The New York Times, the Financial Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal Europe, The Nation, The National Interest, the Los Angeles Times, The Huffington Post, The Christian Science Monitor, the Boston Globe, and Salon. Her media appearances range from Al Jazeera to MSNBC, CNN, BBC, and NPR. She received a BA from Bethel College, an MA from Indiana University, and a PhD from the University of California, Berkeley.