UK - Australia Track 1.5 Bilateral Dialogue

This project explores the current status and future direction of the UK–Australia bilateral relationship within a new multipolar landscape.




Main Image Credit Anjuman Sharma / Alamy Stock Photo


The international strategic landscape has come under greater stress from challenges to the rules-based international system, rising tensions between the US and China, as well as climate change and global health crises. This has amplified the importance of global principles and key partnerships among like-minded states and middle powers.

The UK will host various high-level summits and dialogues in 2021, from the Australia–UK Ministerial Consultations (AUKMIN) to the G7 Summit, as well as COP26. The UK and Australia are also increasingly converging in the Indo-Pacific, which both countries identify as being pivotal to global prosperity and security in the coming decade.

RUSI and the National Security College of the Australian National University have launched a ‘Track 1.5’ Bilateral Dialogue to explore how to deepen and expand the UK–Australia bilateral relationship as the UK pursues a new foreign policy outside of the EU.

Main Image Credit Anjuman Sharma / Alamy Stock Photo

Project team


Veerle Nouwens

Senior Research Fellow

International Security Studies

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Rory Medcalf, Director, National Security College, Australia National University

Aims and objectives

This project will present ideas on how Australia and the UK can work together within a new multipolar landscape, with a specific focus on the Indo-Pacific dialogues.

It will offer thinking on which policy areas should be prioritised and how the UK and Australia’s respective strengths can be better utilised and coordinated in partnership to meet today’s most pressing challenges. These range from building national resilience and integrated national capability, to new security challenges like geoeconomics and cyber, as well as global challenges relating to health and climate change. It will seek to understand how London and Canberra can deepen their cooperation to mitigate these challenges, build on shared strengths and engage with others through new minilateral partnerships.