Consortium Leader: Netherlands Institute of International Relations ‘Clingendael’
Consortium Member: The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies (HCSS)
Subcontractor: Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI)

Covid-19 en het multilaterale veiligheidsbestel

Submitted by Inge on Tue, 07/07/2020 - 11:23

Het multilaterale stelsel kampt al geruime tijd met de nodige kwalen, lang voordat Covid-19 haar intrede deed. Het voor de veiligheid en voorspoed van Nederland zo belangrijke internationale bestel van normen en instituties is wel vaker in het gedrang geweest, maar de druk is de afgelopen jaren flink toegenomen. Dit komt met name door de houding van drie geopolitieke sleutelspelers: de Verenigde Staten, China en Rusland. De harde America first benadering van de VS onder president Trump, dat zich steeds vaker terugtrekt uit multilaterale samenwerkingsverbanden en verdragen, versterkt een lange termijn trend waarin Washington steeds minder leiderschap wil dan wel kan tonen. Een steeds assertiever China onder leiding van Xi Jinping probeert het multilaterale bestel naar Chinees model opnieuw in te richten, terwijl Rusland met name op veiligheids- en mensenrechtengebied al jarenlang blokkades opwerpt. Tenslotte groeit de publieke scepsis over globalisering in het algemeen, waardoor het draagvlak voor multilateralisme afneemt.

De auteurs

Bob Deen (Senior Research Fellow bij Instituut Clingendael)

Adája Stoetman (Junior Researcher bij Instituut Clingendael)

Sico van der Meer (Research Fellow bij Instituut Clingendael)


De Geopolitieke Gevolgen van de Coronacrisis

Submitted by Inge on Tue, 06/16/2020 - 10:06

In een nieuwe notitie gaat Rob de Wijk in op de geopolitieke effecten van Covid-19, de gevolgen voor de veiligheid en hoe Nederland hierop kan reageren.

Momenteel vallen drie crises samen: de uitbraak van Covid-19, een recessie zonder weerga en een geopolitieke paradigmaverandering, terwijl de Brexit en klimaatverandering ook aandacht vragen. Deze perfect storm in combinatie met het opkomend populisme stelt beleidsmakers zodanig op de proef dat het de vraag is of de nationale politieke systemen en daarmee internationale organisaties als de EU en de NAVO dit aankunnen.

Als dat niet het geval is, kunnen de economische veiligheid, de territoriale integriteit en de maatschappelijke en politieke stabiliteit van Nederland in gevaar komen. Een beleidsomslag zonder precedent is noodzakelijk. Nederland staat daarbij voor een keuze: het multilateralisme versterken en werken aan de verdieping van de Europese samenwerking, met alle pijnlijke politieke keuzes van dien, of toestaan dat de EU teruggaat naar een vrijhandelszone of implodeert.

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Covid-19: De geopolitieke gevolgen voor de EU

Submitted by Inge on Mon, 06/08/2020 - 13:31

Bij het aantreden van de Europese Commissie in november 2019 sprak voorzitster Ursula von der Leyen over de noodzaak van een geopolitiek optredende Europese Unie in een veranderende wereld. De uitbraak van de Covid-19 crisis in Europa, begin maart dit jaar, onderstreepte volgens Von der Leyen “the need for Europe to be stronger, more united and more strategic in the way it thinks, acts and speaks.” De veranderende wereld met de opkomst van China, een assertief Rusland en een minder betrokken en minder invloedrijke Verenigde Staten dwingt de EU om in de internationale arena van de machtspolitiek een eigen rol op te eisen. Minder duidelijk is hoe een geopolitiek optredende EU gestalte moet krijgen. Deze notitie beoogt hiertoe aanzetten te geven. Daarbij komen achtereenvolgens aan de orde: de mogelijke gevolgen van de Covid-19 crisis op geo-economisch gebied en het buitenlands-, veiligheids- en defensiebeleid van de EU. De notitie sluit af met een opsomming van de implicaties voor Nederland.

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De auteurs

Dick Zandee (Hoofd Security Unit, Instituut Clingendael)

Kimberley Kruijver (Junior Researcher - Security Unit, Instituut Clingendael)


The future of Arctic security 

Submitted by Inge on Tue, 04/28/2020 - 12:55

The Arctic environment is changing rapidly due to climate change. Despite continued cooperation between the Arctic states and other countries, the risk of the region becoming a playground for great power competition is increasing. Current trends point to a further geopolitisation of the area, multiplied by the melting of ice. Increasingly, Russia, China and the United States will compete in the Arctic in the context of the global power game. Moscow is stepping up its military activities and securitisation is increasingly characterising the American Arctic policy. Beijing is increasing its financial- economic investment in the region, which serves its long-term agenda of becoming a global superpower. The US administration has already started to respond, both by accusing Russia and China of their geopolitical activities as well as by stepping up its own involvement in the region. As a result, Arctic security is more prominently on the agenda than ever before.

Read full report.

The authors

Dick Zandee (Senior Research Fellow and Head of the Security Unit at the Clingendael Institute).

Kimberley Kruijver (Junior Researcher at the Clingendael Institute)

Adája Stoetman (Junior Researcher at the Clingendael Institute)


NATO’s Futures through Russian and Chinese Beholders’ Eyes

Submitted by Inge on Wed, 10/23/2019 - 16:35

As NATO celebrates the 70th anniversary of its Founding Treaty this year, many fundamental aspects of its future are widely debated within the Alliance itself. Western views on NATO’s future have, throughout the seven decades of its existence, ranged from those who predicted NATO’s imminent demise to those who claimed that the many ties that bind the two sides of the Northern Atlantic are so deep and enduring that they are bound to last for decades to come. Throughout this period, the center of gravity in this debate has always tended to lean towards the latter view. More recently, however, the Western outlook on NATO’s future is increasingly being painted in decidedly more somber hues.

But what do other key players in the international system think about NATO’s future(s)? 

To answer this question, the Dutch ministries of Defense and of Foreign Affairs asked HCSS to take a closer and more systematic look at how Chinese and Russian experts have been analyzing NATO’s future in their languages over the past three years – basically since the beginning of the Trump presidency. Many of the key Chinese and Russian scholars working on these issues also publish in English. Given the nature of these countries’ regimes, however, it is often unclear to what extent they are signaling to the broader Western or international community as opposed to reflecting their own opinions or views. This may differ from publications in their own language primarily targeted at domestic audiences, which also clearly include part of their countries’ elites whose knowledge of the English language might preclude them from being exposed to their projections and ideas.


Yar Batoh, Stephan De Spiegeleire, Daria Goriacheva, Yevhen Sapolovych, Marijn de Wolff and Frank Bekkers.


The European Intervention Initiative

Submitted by Inge on Mon, 09/23/2019 - 15:10

Developing a shared strategic culture for European defence 

In September 2017 President Emmanuel Macron suggested a European Intervention Initiative (EI2) as part of his vision of a “sovereign, united and democratic Europe”. Some commentators labelled his proposal, which stands outside of existing structures (e.g. the European Union), as the launching of a European intervention force. In reality, EI2 is aimed at bringing able and willing European countries together to prepare themselves better for future crises – not by creating a new standby force but by ultimately creating a shared strategic culture. At the invitation of France, ten European countries have joined the initiative.

The key challenge is how a shared strategic culture can best be achieved.

The key challenge is how a shared strategic culture can best be achieved. To answer that question, this report will start with a short background description of EI2 and what has been achieved so far, followed by an analysis of what constitutes a ‘strategic culture’. Based on that analysis the ten EI2 countries will be assessed according to several criteria related to their current national strategic cultures.

Strategic cultures are notoriously resilient to change, but can particular entry points for strategic cultural convergence be identified that make the most impact? The report concludes with recommendations on these entry points in order to best achieve a shared strategic culture. 

About the authors

Dick Zandee is Head of the Security Unit at the Clingendael Institute. His research focuses on security and defence issues, including policies, defence capability development, research and technology, armaments cooperation and defence industrial aspects.

Kimberley Kruijver is Junior Research Fellow at the Clingendael’s Security Unit. Her research concentrates on (European) security and defence matters.


Military Mobility and the EU-NATO Conundrum

Submitted by Inge on Wed, 07/10/2019 - 15:11

Improved military mobility has been identified as one of the flagships for EU-NATO cooperation. Both organisations have a vested interest in being able to rapidly move defence forces, equipment and supplies across Europe.

In this report, the authors identify and map the relevant stakeholders in this essential field of cooperation. Subsequently, the way in which the EU and NATO have been working together so far, in general as well as in this specific area, is analysed.

Will the issue of improving cross-border military movement prove to be the silver bullet for solving the EU-NATO cooperation conundrum?

About the authors

Margriet Drent is Senior Research Fellow at the Clingendael Institute’s Security Unit. She specialises in European security and defence with a specific focus on EU Common Security and Defence Policy.

Kimberley Kruijver is Junior Research Fellow at the Clingendael’s Security Unit. Her research concentrates on (European) security and defence matters.

Dick Zandee is Head of the Security Unit at the Clingendael Institute. His research focuses on security and defence issues, including policies, defence capability development, research and technology, armaments cooperation and defence industrial aspects.



Submitted by harrietgarvelink on Thu, 09/28/2017 - 11:19

Authors: Tarja Cronberg (Sipri), Sico van der Meer (Clingendael)

Full title: Working Towards a Successful Policy Brief NPT 2020 Review Conference

Date of Finalization: September 2017

Progress Lot 4, 2017


The 2015 Review Conference of the Non-Proliferation Treaty failed to reach any consensus. The issues which gave rise to tensions in 2015 have not been resolved, with the inherent risk that the next Review Conference will fail as well. In this policy brief three options are presented here to increase the possibilities for the 2020 Review Conference to succeed.

First, it could be discussed whether the traditional focus on one final consensus document at the end of a Review Conference can be changed, so that tensions on certain topics do not block everything else as well.

Second, new explorations are required to solve the deadlock on the aim to establish a WMDFree Zone in the Middle East.

Third, the nuclear weapons states should show more willingness in accelerating their disarmament efforts, for which some smaller and bigger steps are identified.