Defence Strategy, Policy and Capabilities

Providing clients with the tools and knowledge to develop their defence capabilities across a range of functional areas, including strategy development, capability planning and workforce management

Research, commentary, and events

  • Journal Article

    Factors Influencing the Uptake of EU-funded Security Research Outcomes

    RAND Europe researchers brought greater clarity to EU-funded security research and innovation implementation by identifying three different research strands and a series of factors that support and hinder uptake.

    20 Jul 2023

  • Commentary

    Finland Joins NATO, Sweden's Accession Remains Uncertain

    Finland is at long last joining NATO, having applied together with Sweden last year in response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine. Finland's accession represents a boon to NATO, a radical change in Finnish foreign and security policy, and another unplanned setback for Russia.

    04 Apr 2023

  • Commentary

    Deciding Whether to Send Fighter Jets to Ukraine

    Supplying military equipment to another country's forces can be far from straightforward. The logistical, operational, and technical considerations are immensely complex, and any offer made by NATO allies to Ukraine might best come with a credible plan for deployment and effect—not just a cheque that cannot be cashed.

    24 Feb 2023

  • Commentary

    Realising the promise of the Defence and Security Industrial Strategy

    Drawing on a body of RAND research on the UK defence industrial base, R&D and technology, researchers reflect on areas of emerging challenges to implementing the Defence and Security Industrial Strategy (DSIS) published in March 2021.

    28 Nov 2022

  • Commentary

    Science and technology as a tool of power: An appraisal

    In the 2021 Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy, the UK Government expressed an ambition to use science and technology (S&T) as a tool of power and an integral part of its national security strategy. Researchers highlight the critical enablers for a successful realisation of this ambition, including conceptual, practical and financial levers.

    28 Nov 2022

  • Commentary

    Removing Barriers to Diversity and Inclusion in the Military

    Efforts to improve representation and remove barriers for personnel with protected characteristics are seen as essential steps for modern militaries, but have not gone without controversy. The UK Armed Forces could take a more-strategic approach to leveraging diversity to elevate it as a strategic enabler of military fighting power in the contemporary threat environment.

    29 Aug 2022

  • Project

    Creating operational advantage through military diversity

    Advances in technology have made warfighting more complex and the range of skills required more diverse. Researchers examined how increasing workforce diversity may create strategic opportunities for military organisations.

    24 Aug 2022

  • Project

    Exploring the security implications of a Chinese developed and governed transcontinental power grid

    Researchers from RAND Europe and RAND will assess global security risks stemming from a potential Chinese developed and governed Global Energy Interconnection that would directly connect renewable producers to consumers around the globe.

    21 Jul 2022

  • Commentary

    Rethinking the EU's Role in European Collective Defence

    Russia's invasion of Ukraine is forcing European nations to quickly re-evaluate how best to maintain their collective security. This makes the concept of European strategic autonomy—the EU's increased ability to operate independently and with partners of choice on defence and security matters—more relevant than ever.

    20 May 2022

  • Project

    UK strategy for the High North: Navigating a changing environment

    Researchers offer a perspective on how the UK could maximise its influence in the High North through enhanced cooperation across government and within multilateral fora in order to tackle environmental and geopolitical changes in the region.

    02 Feb 2022

  • Commentary

    A United Strategy Could Reap Rewards for the United Kingdom in the High North

    The multifaceted nature of Arctic policies, stretching from climate security and scientific cooperation to economic development and conflict mitigation, may require a whole-of-government approach from the United Kingdom. Such an approach could be necessary for the United Kingdom to appear a credible partner to Arctic countries and other third parties.

    02 Feb 2022

  • Project

    How do the UK's potential adversaries approach multi-domain integration in defence?

    To influence the development of the UK’s approach to multi-domain integration, a series of case studies explored Russia, China, Iran and North Korea’s approaches to integrating activities across maritime, land, air, space, cyber and electromagnetic warfare, as well as across government and with external allies, partners and industry.

    20 Jan 2022

  • Project

    Integrating channels of communication to achieve influence

    Researchers are identifying strategies, approaches, methods and tools that UK Defence can implement to design multi-channel influence campaigns aimed at overseas audiences, comprising both online and offline forms of communication, and developing ways to monitor and measure the campaigns' effectiveness..

    05 Jan 2022

  • Multimedia

    European Strategic Autonomy in Defence

    What does European strategic autonomy in defence mean for the EU, North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) and EU-U.S. relations? In this Expert Insights podcast, researchers discuss the path towards greater EU defence integration and factors that affect how this autonomy develops going forward.

    09 Nov 2021

  • Report

    European strategic autonomy in defence and implications for NATO, U.S., and EU relations

    Researchers examined the meaning of European strategic autonomy in defence and its implications for the U.S., NATO and EU-U.S. relations using a scenario methodology and transatlantic expert consultation.

    09 Nov 2021

  • Project

    How UK Defence could support societal resilience to crisis events

    Researchers developed a conceptual framework that includes three phases of societal resilience: Prepare, Respond and Recover. The team identified a set of proposals to help UK Defence improve how it conceptualises and operationalises societal resilience.

    21 Oct 2021

  • Report

    Enhancing U.S.-Finnish and regional defence cooperation

    An independent perspective on Finland's defence posture concludes that U.S.-Finnish defence cooperation can and should proceed at a slow yet steady pace, building on existing foundations and raising the level of ambition as political and resource constraints permit.

    24 Sep 2021

  • Project

    Helping local authorities to support members of the armed forces community

    The Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust’s Strengthening Delivery Programme had a positive impact, and local authorities that received grants to implement and improve service delivery viewed the funding as essential to the gains achieved. Researchers will now evaluate the continuation programme.

    01 Sep 2021

  • Project

    The challenges and opportunities of strategic airlift in Africa

    A complex mix of global and geographically specific challenges inhibit the coordination and optimisation for airlift into the African theatre. Researchers explored the potential use of other modes of transport to create multi-modal solutions.

    22 Jul 2021

  • Project

    Understanding the contribution of defence to UK prosperity

    To help the UK Ministry of Defence in establishing a quantifiable measure of defence contribution to UK prosperity, researchers examined five methodologies, delivered pilot studies to assess them, and recommended how they could be developed further.

    14 Jul 2021