Study Description

The Council on Foreign Relations: A Case Study of the Societal Bases of Foreign Policy Formation, 1922-1969.

Unique Identification Number:
HA-003-001-1-1-United States-DPLS-1922

This alphanumeric data file contains information on a sample of 267 members and directors serving on the U.S. Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) between 1922 and 1969, to allow analysis of owning-class characteristics among the sample. The data file includes region and urban area of residence and of birth, year of birth, ethnic background, level of education, secondary school, undergraduate and graduate universities attended, military service, occupation and institutional sector, median income of census tract of residence, ownership, directorships in major corporations, listing in the Social Register and club memberships, religious affiliation, category of membership in CFR, year first listed as a member, offices held, participation in study and discussion groups, books or articles written under CFR auspices, financial contributions to CFR, relatives in CFR, links to other elite organizations, government service, party affiliation, political contributions, and links to Rockefeller or Morgan financial interest groups.

There are two sets of data. One is on a random sample of 200 members chosen from the 1969 membership list of the Council on Foreign Relations. The other is on the total universe of directors of the Council on Foreign Relations, 1922-1972, consisting of 72 individuals (see Appendix B). Since five of the directors also appear in the sample, the total number of subjects included is 267.

Data was collected from public sources available in libraries. Standard sources checked included Poor's Register of Corporations, Directors, and Executives; Who's Who in America; Biography Index (and articles and books listed there; and the card catalog of the University of Wisconsin library (and books listed there). Sources for earlier directors included Dictionary of American Biography; National Cyclopedia of American Biography; and Encyclopedia of American Biography. For particular individuals or particular variables, other, more specialized sources were consulted. Nevertheless, for some variables the proportion of missing data proved quite high. In other cases, the variable was defined in such a way that no information was counted as a negative result (for example, club membership: if a club was listed in the data available, the subject was coded as a member; otherwise, as "not listed." Thus the results give a minimum estimate of club membership.) The data sheet is available in the online codebook (PDF file, 290KB).

Technical Note:
The State Historical Society of Wisconsin converted the original data from packed IBM decimal to standard alphanumeric character storage mode.
Data Format:
ASCII data file, 267 records; originally stored on cards, 2 cards per subject, all 160 columns used.
One codebook file (PDF)
Date of Study:
Geographic Coverage:
United States
foreign policy, foreign relations, ruling class, class structure, elites, leadership