The BBC's Max Deveson considers which issues Obama is likely to tackle head on - and which he may be tempted to put to one side:
To stimulate the ailing US economy, Mr Obama wants to make the biggest investment in the country's infrastructure.

He proposes a countrywide road- and bridge-building programme, as well as to refurbish public buildings and schools, bring them up-to-date and make them energy-efficient. By investing in projects that are already in the works, he hopes to inject cash into the system quickly, create jobs and trigger consumer spending.

Other proposals include tax credits for firms that create jobs, tax cuts for 95% of American workers, and extended unemployment benefits.

Mr Obama has pledged to reduce insurance costs, while offering a new affordable public plan for those who do not have insurance.

Tom Daschle, former Senate Majority Leader, will head the Health and Human Services Department and also act as the White House's health policy tsar. Several other key advisers also have experience of getting legislation through Congress.

These Congressional veterans will be working with a congress that is itself keen on healthcare reform

Mr Obama has pledged to ensure that 10% of America's electricity comes from renewable sources by 2012, and 25% by 2025. He also wants an 80% cut in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. He proposes to invest $150bn in alternative fuel over the next 10 years, and will work in 2009 to establish a "cap and trade" programme to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Mr Obama is proposing to redeploy troops from Iraq at a pace of one or two combat brigades a month, which would mean that withdrawal would be complete by summer 2010.

Although his national security team consists of people who largely supported the war, Mr Obama has made it clear that withdrawing troops from Iraq is still on his agenda.

Closing the controversial prison camp for terror suspects at the naval base in Guantanamo and ending the use of "enhanced interrogation techniques" are central planks of Mr Obama's security agenda.

Mr Obama is very popular in many countries - a big change, which he is likely to exploit.

He has pledged to give a major speech in the Muslim world early in 2009 - perhaps in Egypt, or in Indonesia (home to the world's largest Muslim community).

If he can improve America's standing in the world, it will be easier for him to ask more from America's allies - to persuade Nato members to send more troops to Afghanistan, or Israel to make concessions as part of an invigorated Middle East peace process.

Mr Obama says he supports the legislation, but there will be plenty of opposition to it in Congress, so he may prefer to expend his political capital on his top priorities - healthcare and climate change. However, if the unions demand EFCA in return for backing Mr Obama on the rest of his domestic agenda, he may have to think again.

Mr Obama will move cautiously on federal laws allowing civil unions for same-sex couples, and steps to replace Clinton's compromise on gays in the military.

Like George Bush, Mr Obama wants to create paths to citizenship for existing illegal immigrants, while strengthening border security.
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