Strategic Foresight

Reports and papers

New dots on the security horizon

04 Dec 2017 - 14:13
Source: Pierre Réveillé/flickr
Results from the Clingendael Expert Survey

Europe is being challenged. Territorial integrity is no longer a given, the ring of instability remains fragile and exports a number of problems ranging from terrorism to migration. The public appears to be largely dissatisfed with the existing political order. Transatlantic relations are in a state of flux and questions are increasingly being asked as to whether Europe should play the game of nations. Many of today’s issues have caught policy-makers by surprise (e.g. think about the annexation of Crimea, Brexit and Trump’s election) and policy-makers would have liked to foresee these in advance.

The annual Clingendael Expert Survey does just that: it is a modest attempt to identify and prioritise some of tomorrow’s key security problems. It scans, validates and prioritises novel threats that are not yet part of our common understanding. These may include completely new problems (such as a funding gap in the IAEA) but also known developments that are not sufficiently recognised. From the Clingendael Radar – a horizon scan for new threats – we were able to compile a shortlist of key aspects. The survey subsequently validated and prioritised this input.