Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations
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Bureau overview
FormedNovember 22, 2011; 8 years ago (2011-11-22)
HeadquartersWashington, DC
Employees160 (FY 2018)
Annual budget$12 million (FY 2018)
Bureau executives
Parent departmentU.S. Department of State
WebsiteOfficial website

The Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations (CSO) is a bureau of the United States Department of State.


CSO’s mission is to anticipate, prevent, and respond to conflict that undermines U.S. national interests. The bureau implements this mission in two complementary ways: through data-driven analysis and forward deploying stabilization advisors to conflict zones. The objective is to inform and execute U.S. strategy, policy, and programs on conflict prevention and stabilization.


CSO’s expertise focuses on three key lines of effort: 1) political instability; 2) security sector stabilization; and 3) countering violent extremism (CVE). CSO collaborates with regional and functional bureaus, DOD, and USAID, and details stabilization advisors to posts and Geographic Combatant Commands (COCOMS) requiring specialized expertise.

Core Lines of Effort

CSO focuses on three core lines of effort:

Political Instability. CSO maps country conditions, analyzes local dynamics, assesses risks/threats, and forecasts future zones of instability.  An essential tool is the Instability Monitoring and Analysis Platform (IMAP), which collects, analyzes and visualizes data on political instability and conflict trends around the globe. CSO also supports local partners in implementing stabilization programs. CSO’s work has contributed to peace-process negotiations, mitigating election violence, sanctions assessments, and policy decisions.

Security Sector Stabilization. The proliferation of militia and breakdown of national armies remains a key impediment to stabilizing fragile and failed states. CSO helps stabilize security sectors by identifying, mapping, and analyzing militia influence, and supporting disarmament demobilization, and reintegration programs. These efforts inform policies on detention, prosecution, or rehabilitation.

Countering Violent Extremism (CVE). These efforts aim to reduce the recruitment and radicalization of violent extremists in areas of critical U.S. national interest. CSO collaborates with the Office of Counter Terrorism to provide research, analysis, and monitoring and evaluation of regional programs. CSO identifies at-risk individuals, vulnerable communities, and CVE influencers.  


The Department of State announced the creation of the bureau on November 22, 2011, replacing the Office of the Coordinator for Reconstruction and Stabilization.[1]


  1. ^ "U.S. Department of State Launches Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations". U.S. Department of State. November 22, 2011. Retrieved November 12, 2019.