updated 7/2/2007 11:38:36 AM ET 2007-07-02T15:38:36

Former World Bank chief Paul Wolfowitz, who resigned amid a furor over his handling of a bank pay package for his girlfriend, has joined the American Enterprise Institute, a think tank, as a visiting scholar.

AEI’s president, Christopher DeMuth, made the announcement Monday. Wolfowitz will work on entrepreneurship and development issues, Africa and public-private partnerships, the group said in a release.

Wolfowitz’s last day as head of the World Bank, a major poverty-fighting institution, was on Saturday, ending a stormy two-year run.

He was essentially forced to step down from the World Bank after a special panel found that he broke bank rules in arranging a hefty pay raise for Shaha Riza, his girlfriend and bank employee. Wolfowitz’s handling of the pay package prompted a staff revolt and calls by Europeans and others for him to resign.

Before taking over the World Bank, Wolfowitz had served as the No. 2 official at the Pentagon, where he played a key role in mapping out the U.S.-led war in Iraq.

AEI’s stated mission is to “defend the principles and improve the institutions of American freedom and democratic capitalism.” The nonprofit institution, founded in 1943, is oriented to research and education on range of government, political, economic and social issues.

President Bush, who had tapped Wolfowitz for the World Bank post, turned to Robert Zoellick to replace him.

Zoellick took over as World Bank president on Sunday. He was Bush’s former top trade envoy and No. 2 diplomat at the State Department. He left the administration last year to become an executive at Wall Street giant Goldman Sachs.

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