Global Strategies

Global Strategies

Connecting academics with Whitehall and beyond

The aim of the project is to provide sound practical advice on how strategy can be developed and implemented in foreign, defence and security policy.

To do this, the project brings together a wide range of academics from LSE with senior practitioners past and present, from the UK and overseas. Regular discussions take place with officials on  issues such as cyber warfare, grey zone conflict, climate change and security, migration, and great power competition. The project's close links with Whitehall reflect the value senior officials attach to the discussions they have with us and the quality of the LSE’s  research and expertise. 

Global Strategies hosts lectures on broader themes of strategy: the challenges faced in creating and implementing strategy, and the difficulty of making decisions in an era of radical uncertainty.  The project also organises conferences and private discussions focused on foreign, defence and security policy, covering topics such as the future of NATO and the requirements for pursuing consistent policy objectives over the long term.

Global Strategies reports

European Defence for the 21st Century

In this Strategic Update, General Sir Richard Barrons highlights the pressing need for greater attention on European defence capabilities. He points a way forward; the transformation of defence and security through the potential of combinations of Digital Age technologies. Read online / Download pdf

Shifting the Dial on Foreign Policy: What it Takes to Reach and Maintain Success

Hugh Sandeman summarises the round-table discussion in June 2018 on lessons from negotiating the Iran Nuclear Agreement. The discussion was chaired by Rt Hon Alistair Burt, and brought together leading policy figures. Read online / Download pdf

Victors and Victims: Creating a Military for the Digital Age

In this Strategic Update, General Sir Richard Barrons warns that our military capabilities must be comprehensively rethought, or we will all be at risk. He sets out 8 principles for how to create an effective military for the digital age. Read onlineDownload pdf

The UK's Foreign, Defence, and Security Policy After Brexit

This report summarises the discussion between a group of British politicians, senior officials and other experts assembled by the LSE IDEAS Global Strategies project in November 2017 to discuss the UK's foreign policy and military options after Brexit. Read online / Download pdf

Enhancing Decision Making in Foreign and Security Policy

In late 2016 thirty British politicians, officials and former officials, officers, and experts met to discuss ways in which UK foreign policymaking leaves the country vulnerable to strategic errors. In this report, the group put forward practical ideas for improving decision making that are well within the reach of the UK’s current institutions and resources. 

Hybrid Warfare in the Middle East

Distilled from discussions with senior British officials, academics, and current practitioners in the media, strategic communications, and cyber security, this report considers the hybrid warfare techniques of Daesh, Al Qaeda, the Taleban, and Iran, and makes specific suggestions on how the UK and other Western countries can better counter this threat. 

Global Strategies events and podcasts


Can the United States Effectively Formulate and Practice a National Strategy?
Tuesday 15 June

In this first of a series of lectures on Strategy: New Voices, Matthew Kroenig asks what is needed for an effective US national strategy.

NATO's Next Ten Years

How can NATO define its mission and maintain political coherence over the next ten years?  The day after the NATO heads of state and government meeting in London in December 2019, held to mark the 70th anniversary of the alliance, officials, military personnel, former practitioners and other experts consider how NATO can define its narrative over the next decade.

From Games to Warfare and Strategy: How Multi-User Platforms Will Transform Difficult Decisions

Joe Robinson from British technology company Improbable discusses how new advances in the games industry are being adopted by government departments in order to greatly improve the way nations prepare and plan for conflict.

What would it mean for Britain's economic diplomacy if China becomes dominant in the world economy?

Linda Yueh explores what Britain needs to consider in relation to economic diplomacy and China.

Russia, China, and the US: challenges yet to come

In this Global Strategies lecture, Phillip Karber looks in detail at Russian and Chinese military capabilities, with particular reference to the experience of battle in Ukraine, and explains the extent of their challenge to US and NATO strategy and forces.

War and PCs: Cyber and Violence in the 21st Century

Lecture by General Sir Richard Barrons, who served as Commander Joint Forces Command until April 2016 in a military career including operations in Bosnia, Kosovo, Northern Ireland, Iraq, and Afghanistan. In this lecture, Sir Richard outlines how disruptive technology will transform defence and security thinking worldwide.

Global Strategies People

Project Heads

Hugh Sandeman is a Visiting Senior Fellow at LSE IDEAS and Project Head of Global Strategies. He was an international banker for 30 years based in New York, Tokyo, London, and Frankfurt, and for the past decade has focused on India. He was previously Tokyo correspondent, international business editor and New York correspondent of The Economist.

Christopher Coker is Professor of International Relations specialising in strategy and the future of warfare. He teaches at defence academies around the world and has been a Visiting Fellow at several, including the National Institute for Defence Studies in Tokyo and the Swedish Defence College.