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Christopher Sands

Senior Research Professor

Director of the Center for Canadian Studies

Acting Director of the Latin American Studies Program


Christopher Sands is a Senior Research Professor and Director of the Center for Canadian Studies and also currently serving as the Interim Director of Latin American Studies at SAIS. In 2020, Professor Sands accepted a concurrent federal appointment as Director of the Canada Institute at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

From 1993 to 2007 Sands was a fellow and director of Canada projects at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and from 2007 until 2016 he was a senior fellow and director of an Initiative on North American Competitiveness at the Hudson Institute. Professor Sands taught North American Comparative Politics at American University’s School of Public Affairs (2005-2012) and as the G. Robert Ross Distinguished Visiting Professor in the College of Business and Economics at Western Washington University (2012-2017). In the 1999-2000 academic year, he was a Fulbright Visiting Scholar at the Norman Peterson School of International Affairs at Carleton University. Dr. Sands currently serves on the boards of the Association for Canadian Studies in the United States, the Canada-US Law Institute, the Institute for Research on Public Policy, the Macdonald Laurier Institute, and the University of California Berkeley’s Canadian Studies Program.

Professor Sands’ most recent book is Canada-US Relations: Sovereignty or Shared Institutions? (Palgrave Macmillan 2019) and he is currently working on a book on the evolution of the North American political economy. He is a member of the editorial board for Canadian Foreign Policy Journal. Sands earned a B.A. in political science from Macalester College, and his M.A. in international economics (1994) and Ph.D. in international relations and Canadian Studies (2009) from Johns Hopkins SAIS.

Fall 2015 
Spring 2017 
Fall 2016 
Spring 2015 



  • Canada
  • North America


  • American Defense Policy
  • American Foreign Policy
  • Domestic Influences On Foreign Policy
  • Economics
  • American Economic Policy
  • Corporate Governance and Financial Markets
  • Foreign Direct Investment
  • Globalization
  • Labor Economics and Outsourcing
  • Elections and Foreign Policy
  • Energy Issues
  • Energy and Security
  • Energy Technologies
  • European Union and Transatlantic Relations
  • Intelligence
  • International Economics
  • International Law
  • International Political Economy
  • International Relations
  • Multinational Corporations
  • Nation-building and Democratization
  • NATO
  • Natural Resources
  • Oil Politics
  • Political Economy & Development
  • Politics
  • Privitization and Private-sector Development
  • U.S. Congress and Foreign Policy
  • U.S. Energy Policy
  • U.S. Presidency and Foreign Policy


  • French

In the News

Oh cannabis!

Christopher Sands hosted The Canusa Street podcast, 08/24

The great divide at the border.

Christopher Sands hosted The Canusa Street podcast, 08/12

To the borderline, with Rep. Brian Higgins.

Christopher Sands hosted The Canusa Street podcast, 08/12

Unmarked graves: Past and present challenges for indigenous communities of the Americas.

Christopher Sands interviewed on Wilson Center’s Americas 360 podcast, 07/21

A winning bet: The USMCA at one year.

Christopher Sands wrote for Wilson Center, 07/15

USMCA at one Year – happy birthday?

Christopher Sands interviewed on Wilson Center’s Americas 360 podcast, 07/01

U.S. triggers formal dispute against Canadian dairy practices.

Christopher Sands quoted on, 05/26

Oil pipeline disputes raise tensions between U.S. and Canada.

Christopher Sands quoted in Associated Press, 04/28

COVID-19 vaccine rollout in the Americas: How is the region doing?

Benjamin Gedan and Christopher Sands interviewed on the Wilson Center’s Americas 360 podcast, 03/12