Furthering Global Britain? Reviewing the Foreign Policy Effect of UK Engagement in East Africa

The project considers UK development investments in East Africa through the lenses of foreign policy, defence and security, and looks at their strategic relevance and effectiveness.




The 2021 Integrated Review sets out the UK government’s vision for Global Britain: an emphasis on openness as a source of prosperity; a more robust position on security and resilience; a renewed commitment to the UK as a force for good in the world; and an increased determination to seek multilateral solutions to challenges such as climate change.

This project aims to analyse how significant UK development and defence investments are in contributing to selected Global Britain policy agendas in the Horn and East Africa.

The project will assess changes between 2021 and 2023, but also look back over the past six years to provide context and understand the extent of UK engagement in the region.

Aims and objectives

Using the East Africa region as a case study where the UK has deployed its full defence, diplomacy and development toolkit, the project will test the extent to which the UK’s foreign policy inputs have contributed to policy outcomes. In doing so, it aims to answer the following questions:

  • How effective has the UK been in implementing its Global Britain objectives in the region?
  • Have Global Britain outcomes been affected by structural and policy changes?
  • How does the UK’s approach and impact differ, in comparison to those of other countries?
  • How do UK priorities in East Africa align with those of host governments and what are host governments’ expectations of and recommendations for the UK?

Project outputs

RUSI intends to produce up to eight research papers and policy briefs during 2022 and 2023.

Related programme


Africa in Perspective Programme