Minh-Thu Pham is a nonresident fellow at the Liechtenstein Institute on Self-Determination with expertise in the United Nations and global governance, sustainable development, and multilateral diplomacy. She teaches an undergraduate policy task force on multilateralism in crisis at the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs. Minh-Thu is a nonprofit executive and policy entrepreneur with two decades of experience leading, building, and growing initiatives to tackle global challenges. She advises groups on political power and social impact, is co-founder and chief executive of New American Voices working on American democracy and a Distinguished Fellow at the Polis Center for Politics at Duke University.
Previously, Minh-Thu was a strategic planning and policy advisor to United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan, helping to steer the UN through a period of deep crisis after the Iraq War. From 2009-2019 she was the United Nations Foundation’s Executive Director of Global Policy, where she devised and led a global effort to help the UN create and review progress on the Sustainable Development Goals and agree on new ways to finance them. She has run dozens of track 1.5 dialogues, worked on major UN reform efforts, nurtured evidence-informed policymaking, and helped open up global policy processes to broader audiences, including for those not usually represented. She has also led and advised efforts to strengthen American democratic participation and inclusion. Driven by a belief that change requires connection between people, ideas, and power, she has worked to support and build bridges between policymakers, experts, and activists.
Minh-Thu has been featured in The Washington Post, NBC Nightly News, Politico, The Tavis Smiley Show, The New York Times, Cheddar TV, Arab News, among others. She received her master's in public affairs and international relations from Princeton and BA from Duke and serves on the boards of several nonprofits. She is a proud former refugee from Vietnam and lives in New York City with her husband and daughters.