The Commonwealth Advisory Bureau

Since 1999, the Commonwealth Advisory Bureau (CAB), formerly the Commonwealth Policy Studies Unit, has sought to advance Commonwealth values through policy-relevant research and a courageous programme of events. 

In short, CAB is the independent think-tank and advisory service for the modern Commonwealth. Part of the Institute of Commonwealth Studies at the University of London, CAB runs projects in numerous countries across the Commonwealth. Free from the straitjacket of intergovernmental diplomacy, we are able to tackle controversial and sensitive issues in a thorough and evidence-based way. 

Over the years, CAB projects have influenced debate and opinion on issues such as free and fair elections, the rights of indigenous peoples, and the need to assist development in small island states. 

CAB’s Policy Briefing Series provides expert independent analysis and advice to decision-makers around the Commonwealth. The series includes in-depth briefings issued ahead of every Commonwealth heads of government and ministerial meeting, with the aim of influencing and informing the debate while seeking to bring the Commonwealth agenda to a wider audience. 

Our monthly publication, Opinions, aims to stimulate debate and dialogue around some of the most pressing issues facing the Commonwealth and its member states. In future editions we will be addressing the death penalty, small arms, and the implications of the Arab Spring for Commonwealth Africa. 

CAB also offers confidential and impartial advice to countries interested in applying to join the Commonwealth, and helps existing members make the most of their Commonwealth membership for maximum impact at home and abroad. 

We are committed to informing and improving policy and decision-making across the Commonwealth. 

For more information see: or follow us on Twitter: @CABcommonwealth


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