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Centre for Geopolitics

Providing historically grounded approaches to enduring geopolitical problems
Aeroplane against sunlit sky

In the spring of this year, after two years of on-and-off lockdowns and restrictions, the Centre began to spread its wings. Just before Easter, Director Brendan Simms represented us at a closed discussion at the Jacques Delors Institute in Paris, attended by former European ministers and prime ministers.

In early May, the Baltic Geopolitics Programme toured the north-eastern Baltic Sea region (a fuller description of this trip is given by Dr. Donatas Kupciunas). We were hosted by the British and Swedish Embassies in Helsinki and the Foresight Centre of the Estonian Parliament in Tallinn. At the end of the month, the Director took off again, this time to promote his book on the battle of Midway (co-authored with Steve McGregor) and the Centre more generally in the United States. He spoke on the aircraft carrier USS Hornet at Alameda near San Francisco over the Memorial Day weekend, at Cambridge in America in New York and at the National Museum of the Navy in Washington.

Shortly after that, the Director headed for Sweden and the annual conference of The Axel and Margaret Ax:son Johnson Foundation for Public Benefit. The topic discussed this year was ‘Liberty’ and he spoke on the subject of ‘British freedoms’, ‘German Liberty’ and the ‘Liberties of Europe’. The Foundation is a major partner of CfG, through the Institute of Statecraft, and the three Research Fellow and three PhD students in that programme start with us in October of this year.

These trips generated a lot of interest in the Centre and its projects but also new pledges of support, which run into five figures. What was striking in all cases was the level of enthusiasm for the study of geopolitics in its deeper historical and specific regional context. All this bodes well for the Centre as we engage with the wider world in the post-pandemic era.