HCSS in the media

Book review – “Future NATO: Adapting to New Realities”

July 2nd 2020 - 15:02
Future NATO Sweijs Osinga

Michael Rühle has reviewed “Future NATO: Adapting to New Realities”, a new publication edited by John Andreas Olsen, Norway’s Defence Attaché in the UK. In the book, fifteen authors – diplomats, military officers and think tankers, among them Dr. Tim Sweijs, Director of Research at The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies – look at NATO’s agenda from various angles.

Sweijs, together with Professor Frans Osinga, Special Chair in War Studies at Leiden University, contributed a chapter discussing technological innovation. The authors note that maintaining NATO’s technological edge requires much higher investments in areas such as cyber defense, artificial intelligence, unmanned systems and space capabilities.

Given the role of these technologies as critical enablers of NATO’s military performance – and the attention China and Russia devote to them – NATO should not only seek to regain the ability to conduct high-intensity warfare but also embrace technological innovation head-on, Sweijs and Osinga argue. This must also include the ethical and legal dimensions of autonomy and similar changes, and the development of “a coherent operational concept that undergirds NATO’s conventional deterrence posture.”

Unlike most edited volumes, which are often outdated when they are published, “Future NATO” is remarkably up-to-date, concludes Rühle. This, as well as a strong cast of contributors, ensures that the volume is an effective antidote to the gloom-and-doom literature that seeks to relegate NATO to the dustbin of history. NATO is still needed, and this book goes a long way in answering why.

Read the whole book review by Michael Rühle (Head of the Hybrid Challenges and Energy Security Section of NATO’s Emerging Security Challenges Division) here.

Dr. Tim Sweijs is the Director of Research at The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies. He is the initiator, creator and author of numerous studies, methodologies, and tools for horizon scanning, early warning, conflict analysis, national security risk assessment, and strategy and capability development. Tim has lectured at universities and military academies around the world. His main research interest concerns the changing character of contemporary conflict. Tim is a Senior Research Fellow at the Netherlands Defence Academy and an Affiliate at the Center for International Strategy, Technology and Policy in the Sam Nunn School of International Affairs at the Georgia Institute of Technology.