The campaign for the Institute’s founding began in 1974 when the idea of a national peace academy was first brought to the Senate floor. It was the first of many milestones in USIP’s remarkable history.
Senators Vance Hartke and Mark Hatfield introduce a bill to create the George Washington Peace Academy. Congress agrees the idea warrants exploration.
President Jimmy Carter appoints eight members to a commission to conduct further research into the establishment of a National Peace Academy. Senator Spark Matsunaga chairs the commission, which explores theories, approaches, and organizations involved with the resolution of international conflicts.
The commission issues its report recommending the creation of a national peace academy. Senators Mark Hatfield, Spark Matsunaga and Jennings Randolph, along with Congressman Dan Glickman, sponsor bills based on the recommendation.
Congress passes the United States Institute of Peace Act as an amendment to the Defense Authorization Act.
The Board of Directors holds first meeting. A staff of three opens the Institute’s first office at 730 Jackson Place in Washington, D.C.
The first National Peace Essay Contest winners come to the nation’s capital.
The 90s were s crucial decade in the development of the headquarters project. In 1992 the Institute’s legislation is amended to authorize it to accept private donations to build a headquarters facility.
Ronald Reagan and Jimmy Carter receive the Spark M. Matsunaga Medal of Peace. USIP’s first major conference, "Managing Global Chaos," is held this year as well.
USIP mobilizes a Bosnia Special Project to help implement the Dayton Peace Agreement.
Congress authorizes the Navy to transfer a portion of its Potomac Annex facility on the Navy Hill facility at 23rd St. and Constitution Ave. to USIP for use as the Institute's future permanent headquarters.
"Virtual Diplomacy," a landmark two-day conference exploring the impact of the technological revolution on international conflict management, is held in April. Also, USIP Press publishes "Managing Global Chaos," its first in a series of edited volumes on conflict management by Chester A. Crocker, Fen Osler Hampson, & Pamela Aall.
USIP’s "Balkans Initiative" supports the end to violence caused by the Yugoslav wars.
The first "Passing the Baton" conference marks the transition from the Clinton to the Bush administration.
USIP expands Iraq activities with the support of a $10 million congressional appropriation. USIP focuses its initiative in Iraq on reducing interreligious violence and hastening stabilization and democratization.
Congress appropriates $100 million for the USIP permanent headquarters project.
The Institute facilitates the "Iraq Study Group." The resulting report informed policymakers as well as the public and was downloaded over 1 million times from USIP's Web site.
President George W. Bush, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, and former Secretary of State George P. Shultz participate in the groundbreaking ceremony for the Institute’s new headquarters, just north of the Lincoln Memorial. This year also features the first Dean Acheson Lecture.
On October 19, 2009, USIP celebrated its 25th anniversary.
On March 21, USIP moved into its new headquarters building on the National Mall.
Former U.S. Congressman Jim Marshall becomes USIP's fourth president on September 14.