Evolving Security of Russia and Eurasia Programme

This research programme analyses Russia’s strategic thinking, political change and its global and regional ambitions.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has upended the existing European security architecture, forced NATO and the EU to rethink their approach to Russia, and highlighted the complex and interconnected nature of global systems. Russia’s efforts to remodel the new world order, pivot itself as the ruler of a Greater Eurasian space straddling the Asia-Pacific region and Europe, and build more durable alliances with China and middle powers such as Iran and India, are all likely to shape global processes for years to come. Against this backdrop, there has never been a more pressing time to analyse Russia’s strategic thinking, and its global and regional ambitions.

As Russia becomes more inward-looking and increasingly repressive, with opposition groups side-lined and hard-line ideology a feature of the political environment, our research programme seeks to understand the security and political processes within the Kremlin, to remain ahead of the curve and better anticipate Russia’s decision-making. Identifying long and short-term political changes in Russia, assessing the relative stability of the Kremlin and the political elite, and unpacking Russia’s complex policy approach to the UK in particular, are all important areas that we aim to shed light on in the coming years.

The war has highlighted political divisions within the former Soviet republics over their relationship with Russia, with their political and security efforts now overlapping with some of those in Europe, the MENA and Indo-Pacific. Given this, Russia’s efforts to retain its hold over countries such as Moldova, Belarus and those in the Black Sea region, will remain a key element of Russian foreign policymaking, and an important feature of this research programme.

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