PS21 Update: Week Ending 3 July

gl report

In the past five months, PS21 has held a number of substantial and thought-provoking discussions, published some excellent pieces of writing and analysis on our website, and released our own research on rising conflict trends. And we have even more planned for the second half of 2015.

Our Upcoming Events: 




July 6Kidnap and Ransom. From Isis to Somali pirates, the last decade has seen an unprecedented level of interest in kidnap and ransom. PS21 brings together a uniquely qualified panel to look at the elite group of specialists who offer negotiation skills in this sphere and to consider what role governments should take when it comes to paying ransom to kidnappers. The discussion will be moderated by PS21 executive director Peter Apps, and the panel will include Nigel Inkster, former deputy-chief Secret Intelligence (MI6), Brittany Damora, Senior Operations Manager, Kidnap and Ransom, Aegis Response and Nigel Brennan, Photojournalist and author who was kidnapped in Somalia in 2008 and held hostage for 15 months. This event is currently fully booked – please email if you would like to go on a waiting list.

July 29Beyond the SDSR. As Britain’s’ Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR) gets underway, we have an excellent panel to discuss the defence challenges facing the UK and how they might be addressed. How should the UK handle new challenges such as a resurgent Russia and the prospect of Scottish independence? What do the British people really want? And regardless of the answer, is there any option other than doing less with less? Chair: Peter Apps:Executive Director PS21. Panel includes Patrick Bury, Former Captain British Army Royal Irish Regiment. PhD Candidate at the University of Exeter’s Strategy and Security Institute, Philip Thicknesse, Former head of Futures UK Defence Concepts and Doctrines Centre, Tom Bruxner, British Army officer, Defense Concepts and Doctrine Center,  Josh Arnold-Forster Former Special Advisor to John Reid MP, Defence Secretary 2005-2006, now Strategic Advisor at Hanover. RSVP here.

Washington DC

July 14Making it in DC and beyond. As the intern season in Washington reaches its height, PS21 will host a discussion on what it takes to make it in DC and foreign policy. Moderated by Negar Razavi, social anthropologist and PS21 global fellow, the discussion will include the following panellists: Ali Wyne, member of the adjunct faculty, RAND Corporation and Kathryn Floyd, Professor of International Relations at the College of William & Mary. Additional panellists will be announced shortly. RSVP here.

July 21Rebuilding Afghanistan: Transparency and Accountability in America’s Longest War. As the longest running and one of the most expensive wars in U.S. history winds down, PS21 asks: just where did the money go? We are delighted to present a discussion with the man looking into that very question, Special Inspector for Afghanistan Reconstruction, John F. Spoko. Also on the panel will be Andy Wright, Founding Editor of Just Security. RSVP here.



July 28, Event with Eurasia Group President Ian Bremmer. We are excited to invite you to join us for a conversation with Ian Bremmer, President of political risk consultancy Eurasia Group and leading geopolitical thinker. His latest book, “Superpower”, examines the potential routes forward for the United States in a new and uncertain era. The event will be moderated by Ali Wyne, PS21 Global Fellow and member of the adjunct staff at the RAND Corporation. To book your spot, RSVP here.



This week at PS21:

On Monday, we published this report on countering violent extremismfrom our first event in New York in conjunction with New York University’s Just Security. The discussion featured Richard Barrett, former head UN Al-Qaeda/Taliban monitoring team and member of PS21 international advisory group, and Faiza Patel, founding editor of Just Security and member of the UN Human Rights Council’s Working Group on the Use of Mercenaries. The discussion was moderated by Just Security’s Co-Editor-in-Chief, Ryan Goodman.



We also issued a report on the future of drones based on our June DC discussion

moderated by Ryan Hagemann, Civil Liberties Policy Analyst at the Niskanen Center and adjunct fellow at TechFreedom. The panellists for this included Erik Lin-Greenberg, Former US Air Officer, PhD candidate Columbia University and Lisa Ellman, Counsel for McKenna & Aldridge LLP and former senior roles in the White House and Department of Justice

Amitha Rajan, former Reuters journalist as well as contributor and volunteer at PS21, recently completed an MA at the School of Oriental and African Studies. Read her insightful piece on Narendra Modi’s Foreign Policy – The View from the West

Previous PS21 Reports:

17/06/2015  What Would a Hillary Clinton Foreign Policy Look like?

10/06/2015   Former UK Special Forces Chief on 21st Century Defence

31/05/2015   The ISIS War: Where Are We?

17/03/2015   Death Toll in 2014’s Bloodiest Wars Sharply Up on Previous Year



Other Articles: 


June 2015

24/06/2015     The Confederate flag is a useful reminder – Donna Bryson

23/06/2015     Chaos and Complexity: megacity management David Rubens

22/06/2015     How will the war against the Islamic State End? – Peter Apps

18/06/2015     PS21 DC Event with Eurasia Group President Ian Bremmer

15/06/2015     Not just a click! Online activism not slacktivism – Sandy Schumann

15/06/2015     IS advances in Libya: NATO again? – Patrick Bury

11/06/2015     PS21 Announces Governing Board

09/06/2015     Iraq America’s best hope in the Middle East – Payam Ghalehdar

04/06/2015     Sisi’s foreign policy – David Hartwell

03/06/2015     ‘New’ Terrorism – Dr. Chris Mackmurdo & Dr Alia Brahimi

01/06/2015     A South China Sea Air Defence Zone? – Erik Lin-Greenberg


May 2015

27/05/2015     What next for Britain? – David Murrin

21/05/2015     London event takeaways: The UK election – what we’ve learned

19/05/2015     Italicum: Achieving governability and democracy – Giulia Pastorella

14/05/2015     African strategies key in addressing terrorism – Edward Wanyonyi

14/05/2015     New York May 29 Event: Countering Violent Extremism

14/05/2015     Karachi: low-intensity attacks increase minority risk- Omar Hamid

11/05/2015     SNP victories real seismic change in UK election – Peter Apps

08/05/2015     PS 21: The First 100 Days

06/05/2015     Event Takeaways: The Middle East in Flux

06/05/2015     What now for Libya? – Patrick Bury

04/05/2015     The Rise of Anti-Immigrant Movements – Sandy Schumann

03/05/2015     What does this election tell us about modern Britain? – Peter Apps


April 2015

30/04/2015    DC and London UK Election Discussions: Key Takeaways

29/04/2015    What Russia really thinks on Ukraine – Vassily Kashin

28/04/2015    A Migrant’s Short Story – Emmanuel Akintwu

28/04/2015    Dangerous Crossing: migrants in Mediterranean – Peter Apps

27/04/2015    Nigeria’s next challenge: its constitution – Eric Mwiine-Magaju

24/04/2015    Crime and Counterterrorism in Karachi: DC Event Key Takeaways

23/04/2015    High Spending Russia Closes Naval Gap – Philip Thicknesse

21/04/2015    A hashtag’s unintended consequences – Emmanuel Akinwotu

20/04/2015    Cyber Insurance – An Emerging Market – Tom Allen 

13/04/2015    The rise of “National Innovation Foundations”- Frank Spring  

10/04/2015    University attack stark lessons for Kenya- Edward Wanyonyi  

09/04/2015    Organising in the 21st Century- Linda Tirado 

05/04/2015    The Islamic State in Libya- Alia Brahimi 

02/04/2015    The 21st Century Clash of Cultures- David Murrin 

01/04/2015    Deepnet: is the “bad web” good or evil?- Michael Gillespie 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s