The UK’s Place in the World and EU Membership

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The UK in a Changing World initiative and RUSI are hosting a day long conference to the explore costs and benefits of EU membership for Britain’s diplomacy and foreign, security and defence policies.

As the referendum on British membership of the EU approaches, debates about the costs and benefits of this membership for Britain take centre stage. As in many other areas of the campaign, there is a danger that emotion will replace evidence-based arguments.

The purpose of this conference is to convene leading analysts to present their latest findings on the costs and benefits of EU membership for Britain’s foreign, security and defence policies.


(To be confirmed)

9:30am Registration

10:00 Session one

The EU – boosting or restricting the UK’s international role

  • Chair, Professor Anand Menon, UK in a Changing Europe and King’s College London
  • Rt. Hon. David Lidington MP, Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

11.15 Refreshment Break

11.30 Session two

The UK and EU foreign policy interrelationship: costs and benefits

Chair, Allegra Stratton, ITV News National Editor 

  • Sir Robert Cooper, Former Counsellor, European External Action Service
  • Sir Simon Fraser, Former Permanent Under-Secretary of State and Head of the Diplomatic Service  

12:30 Lunch

1.30 Session three

The UK, the EU and Defence and Security

  • Chair, Professor Karen Smith, London School of Economics
  • Professor Andrew Dorman, King’s College London 

Professor Malcolm Chalmers, Deputy Director, Royal United Services Institute

2.30 Refreshment Break

3.00 Session four 

The UK, the EU and Development Policy

  • Chair, Professor Richard G. Whitman, UK in a Changing Europe and University of Kent
  • Rt. Hon Andrew Mitchell MP, Former Secretary of State for Overseas Development
  • Dr Simon Lightfoot, University of Leeds

4.00 Refreshment Break

4.30 Session five

Brexit or Bremain – what future for UK foreign policy?

Chair, Dr Jonathan Eyal, RUSI

  • Mark Leonard, European Council on Foreign Relations
  • Charles Grant, Centre for European Reform
  • Philip Stephens, Financial Times
  • Rt. Hon Sir Malcolm Rifkind, Former Foreign Secretary and Secretary of State for Defence

5:30pm Drinks reception

*To be confirmed

This event is being organised by The UK in a Changing Europe 
and Prof Richard Whitman, University of Kent and The Royal United Services Institute (RUSI)


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