European Council on Foreign Relations

Does Europe need a global strategy?

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Does Europe need a global strategy? Ten years ago European leaders approved a security strategy based upon a world that seemed so much more amenable to European interests and values. The subsequent decade has seen the world change enormously, and in a new ECFR paper our experts outline the case for a new strategy for the new world that we find ourselves in.

We recently published three short podcasts looking at some of the issues involved. In the first one, Susi Dennison (one of the authors of the ECFR paper) makes the case that a strategic rethink is overdue.

“Ahead of the December European Council, which is planning to reflect upon strategy and defence questions, there seems to be some enthusiasm across the European member states for that discussion not to be anchored solely in questions around military and defence capacity, but to look more broadly at what Europe’s interests and values are, what it wants to achieve across the world, and whether or not it still has the means to do that.”

In response, Anthony Giddens, suggests that Europe is in a far stronger position that Susi suggests, relative to the rest of the world.

“I don’t think at all necessarily the case that this will be the Asian century. I don’t say it won’t be but I say it’s an open question.”

And in the final podcast, Luuk van Middelar points out where Europe’s current strategic outlook is still working well.

“It’s fairly natural that there is decline of European influence, European might, as a result of the movements of globalisation. But this decline is from a fairly high starting platform.”

What do you think? Does Europe have to reconsider its position in an increasingly competitive and complicated world, and if so, what are the main issues?

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