Kirsten Verclas is the Senior Program Manager at the American Institute for Contemporary German Studies (AICGS). She joined the Institute as Executive Assistant and has been working in the Institute’s Research Program since 2008. In this capacity, she manages the Institute’s projects in all three program areas. She also writes frequently for the Institute and other outlets on critical issues pertinent to German-American relations, such as security issues, transatlantic economic policy, the role of the media, and climate and energy policy. Before joining AICGS, Ms. Verclas worked for EF Au Pair in Boston, MA, and the U.S. Commercial Service in Düsseldorf, Germany.
Ms. Verclas holds a BA in International Relations with a Minor in Economics from Franklin and Marshall College and a MA in International Relations with a concentration in Security Studies from The Elliott School at The George Washington University.
Climate and Energy Policy, Environmental Policy, International Security, German Domestic Policy
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Ms. Kirsten Verclas's Archive
Over the last four years, President Barack Obama’s most significant bill was the 2010 Affordable Care Act (ACA), which introduced a major reform of the U.S. health care system. Although most provisions of the bill were affirmed by the U.S. Supreme Court in summer 2012, Republican opposition to the bill has been… Read more >
On November 6, the U.S. presidential election will be decided in nine swing states: Virginia, Florida, Ohio, Wisconsin, Nevada, Colorado, Iowa, New Hampshire, and North Carolina, representing a crucial number of the necessary 270 Electoral College votes. The outcome in these swing states is still too close to predict. Other states, like… Read more >
Energy and climate policy in the U.S. and in Germany seem to be miles apart. In 2011, Germany decided to phase-out nuclear, whereas in early 2012 the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission granted the first license to build and operate an extension of a nuclear power plant for the first time since 1978…. Read more >
Industrial countries like the U.S., Japan, and Germany depend on a functioning electricity grid as the backbone of their economies and way of life. Impediments to the electricity grid not only harm the economy and hurt the bottom line; they can also cause loss of life and hamper a country’s ability to react to a large-scale catastrophe.
In this AICGS Spotlight, Kirsten Verclas, Senior Project Manager at AICGS explains the office of the President of the the Federal Republic of Germany. She also presents the current German President and the scandal that currently surrounds him.
While the aviation sector had been exempt from the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS), in January 2012 the EU ETS will be expanded to fully include international flights arriving at or departing from an EU airport. This AICGS Spotlight provides background information on the issue, implications for Germany, the United States, and transatlantic relations as well as potential future development.
Two years after the financial and economic crisis began in the United States and shortly thereafter spread to Europe and Germany, the subsequent economic downturn continues to cause problems around the globe. In Issue Brief 38, “Recovering From an Economic Hangover: Lessons and Prescriptions for Transatlantic Cooperation,” AICGS Research Associate Kirsten Verclas analyzes the impact of the economic crisis on Germany, the EU, and the United States and offers policy recommendations for promoting greater cooperation in the future.
Soundboard of Society or Critical Observer: German and American Media Coverage of the Afghanistan Conference
One of the most debated issues in the transatlantic partnership is the NATO mission in Afghanistan. In January 2010, the London Conference on Afghanistan brought together delegations from around the world to discuss the military engagement in Afghanistan as well as the future of the country. AICGS Research Associate Kirsten Verclas explores how this conference surrounding one of the most contested issues in the German-American partnership was covered by the German and American media and outlines the reasons behind the coverage.
The fight against terrorism has been on the forefront of the U.S. and German agendas and shapes the relationship between both countries. While differences in counterterrorism policy exist, the U.S. and Germany have also very successfully cooperated in counterterrorism measures. In Issue Brief 34, Kirsten Verclas, AICGS Research Associate, examines the cultural, economic, and financial aspects of counterterrorism policy in the United States and Germany and how these aspects are combined to shape each country’s overall strategy.
In Issue Brief 32, “A Change in Government But No Change in Policy? Implications of the 2009 German Election,” AICGS Research Associate Kirsten Verclas takes an in-depth look at the results of the 2009 German Bundestag election and their implications for the future of Germany’s party and electoral system. Additionally, the Issue Brief further analyzes the current stance of the new governing coalition on key foreign policy, economic, and domestic issues and the impact this may have on the German-American partnership and U.S. foreign policy interests.