The EU is caught up in a debate over whether to increase its autonomy with regard to the wider world. International developments and crises of recent years have raised the question of whether Europeans should be more capable of managing the risks stemming from their exposure to global trade and possible over-reliance on allies for their security. This report analyses how the pursuit of strategic autonomy transforms EU policies in the field of security, diplomacy, trade, and technology.

The report makes recommendations on how the EU can advance strategic autonomy, while striking a balance between protectionist tendencies and the need to stay open to international engagement and cooperation. Instead of focusing on the divisive question of strategic autonomy from others, member states should pay attention to more constructive approaches and concrete actions to strengthen strategic autonomy. In each of the policy fields, the right mix of protection of European assets, provision of the economic and political basis, and the projection of European interests and values abroad will be vital.

Leading Researcher
Senior Research Fellow
Postdoctoral Fellow