Chatham House Report

Project: Europe Programme

Alex Evans
Former Associate Fellow, Energy, Environment and Resources
David Steven

The report argues that the UK coalition government's international workload is about to increase dramatically - and it urgently needs to upgrade and reform the way it approaches foreign policy.

Key recommendations:

  • The government should view the UK's international agenda through three overlapping and complementary lenses: national security, global systems and fragile states.
  • The remit of the new National Security Council should not define the national security mission too broadly - it should focus on direct threats to British citizens that could have severe consequences for their welfare within a limited time horizon.
  • The government should seize the opportunity to transform the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, whose main role should be to drive strategic synthesis across the global systems brief, while still maintaining its in-country expertise.
  • The government should remodel the Department for International Development around a preventive agenda on fragile states, turning it into a world leader in this area

This report forms part of the project Rethinking the UK's International Ambitions and Choices.