Position: Senior Research Fellow / Director, Military Sciences
Michael Codner is the Director of the Military Sciences Department at the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI).
He researches a range of subjects from defence policy, strategic theory and doctrine, to defence management, future concepts and the application of technology to military capability. He also oversees conferences, meetings and lectures in these areas. He retired from the Royal Navy in October 1995 after a career as a Seaman Officer principally working in anti-submarine warfare and in the latter part of his career, maritime strategy and doctrine, future concepts, defence policy and international issues.
He was a lecturer in strategy and operational art at the US Naval War College, was a Defence Fellow at the Centre for Defence Studies, King's College, London and has held a NATO Fellowship working on coalition interoperability. His degrees are in Philosophy and Psychology (Brasenose College, Oxford). He lectures regularly at University College, London, Southampton University, the University of St. Andrews, the University of Greenwich and the Joint Services Command and Staff College. His written work includes editorship and principal authorship of the First Edition of the Royal Navy’s BR1806: The Fundamentals of British Maritime Doctrine and numerous articles, papers and chapters in journals and collections.
RUSI articles and analysis by this author
The British Military Contribution to Operations in Mali: Is This Mission Creep?
30 Jan 2013
As the UK sends 330 personnel to assist France's military intervention in Mali, there are real concerns that, like Afghanistan, the UK will be mired in another intractable conflict. However, the strategic conditions are very different for this to happen and it is wrong to assume there will be mission creep.
NATO’s Treaty Obligations to Turkey: Theory and Practice
5 Oct 2012
With the violence in Syria spilling into Turkey; Turkey as a NATO member has the right to call on the support of the alliance under Article 5. However implementing collective security is always more complex, thus a full scale NATO response in Syria is unlikely.
SYRIA CRISIS BRIEFING: A Collision Course for Intervention
25 Jul 2012
The Syrian crisis took a decisive new turn on 25 July. President Bashar al-Assad’s own future is now significantly less relevant to whatever will happen next in the country and external intervention, in some form, is now significantly more likely. In this Briefing, experts detail the risks and challenges of intervention in Syria. Our contributors delve further into the internal andexternal aspects of this conflict, offering a sobering assessment ofthe prospects for Syria and the region.
28 Nov 2011
A review of Christopher Coker's reflections on the nature of war over 2,600 years - from Heraclitus to Heisenberg.
Linking the Front Line to Suppliers
12 Aug 2011
Michael Codner outlines how important front-line/industry relationships could be reinforced, and single service rivalries prevented from skewing equipment decisions.
SDSR: What Next for Britain?
19 Oct 2010
The issues as to whether the Strategic Defence and Security Review was Treasury or policy led and whether it was conducted in too short a time for proper discussion, and consideration are now in the past. It is the implications and the unanswered questions that matter.
RUSI: Will the new government fund Britain’s position in the world?
13 May 2010
The new Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government must address the most basic question affecting the Defence Review and Britain's position in the world 'how much is the nation prepared to pay for defence?', according to a Future Defence Review Working Paper from the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI).
General Election 2010: Defence issues and the party positions
24 Mar 2010
RUSI Director Professor Michael Clarke, and RUSI's Director of Military Sciences, Michael Codner, offer their assessment on the defence and security issues that may be raised either prior to or immediately after the UK General Election.
Obama's Grand Strategy - Afghanistan Plus
2 Dec 2009
President Obama aims to exert sufficient military effort to create conditions for transition. This means a dominance over the Taliban - unable to reemerge when transition takes place - together with space and capacity to train and grow the Afghan military and police security forces.
British troop levels in Afghanistan
7 Oct 2009
Is Britain’s strategic posture as a global actor sustainable in the economic crisis and set against failing public support for the mission in Afghanistan?
NATO’s Strategic Concept – a View from Mars
30 Mar 2009
As NATO marks its Sixtieth anniversary, many analysts will argue that members of the Alliance have sufficiently overcome their differences to launch a new Strategic Concept. This new Concept would see a rationalisation of Europe’s military capability and would envisage a ‘minus US’ strategy for some NATO operations.
The unpredictability factor
21 May 2008
With money and new technology, cluster bombs could become more ethical than large single-explosive warheads
Conditions are not right for wholesale withdrawal
11 Sep 2007
An examination of existing Coalition responsibilities and committments in Iraq, where there is now a move towards 'overwatch'; Coalition troops are being taken off the streets but ready to back up Iraqi forces if necessary.