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RAS/NSA Colloquium 2021 - What’s Next? Managing Traditional and New Threats through Alliances, Partnerships and Institutions

RAS/NSA Colloquium 2021 - What’s Next? Managing Traditional and New Threats through Alliances, Partnerships and Institutions

Start Date
Thursday December 9, 2021
End Date
Friday December 10, 2021
9:00 am - 5:00 pm

this event was be broadcast simultaneously in English and French.

2021 was a year of transition: some countries entertained the idea of a post-pandemic turn, while others have not. Throughout the pandemic crisis, however, traditional security challenges have persisted, albeit in unique ways. This colloquium will grapple with this challenging transition: on the one hand, through the uneven impact of the pandemic and vaccine diplomacy, and on the other hand, with an international diplomacy that must deal with an increasingly complex security environment and tenser relations among the great powers. It will address these topics through two public roundtables and a public keynote lecture on Day 1 and a closed-door roundtable on Day 2.

Conference Agenda:

DAY 1 – From 9am to 5pm

9 :00-9 :15 – Welcoming remarks

9 :15-11 :15 - Roundtable 1 - The Clash of Regional and International Organizations

This panel explores the impact of COVID-19 on regional and international organizations. While the logical response to a global issue such as COVID-19 would be to rely on multilateral efforts, the pandemic has crowded out multilateral and even regional initiatives in favour of nationalistic sentiments and self-interested responses by many states. In the post-pandemic period, states may thus invest more in self-sufficiency and in redefining their strategic priorities, including health security. The growing gap between national, regional, and multilateral responses to COVID-19 calls into question the development of global governance and regional integration, as well as the future of international organizations and their capacity for economic and political cooperation.

11:15AM - 11:30AM - Coffee Break

11:30AM - 12:30PM – Keynote Speech

12:30PM - 1:30PM – Lunch

1:30PM - 3:30PM - Roundtable 2 - Cooperating with Rivals in a Post-Pandemic World

The decline of American leadership is said to be directly responsible for national governments' efforts to go it alone in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. While this trend was especially salient under the Trump administration, it has not entirely disappeared with the arrival of President Joe Biden. According to Robert Kaplan, China and Russia have redefined great power competition and the classical/Western meaning of war, making the response of the West, i.e., the United States, all the more important. Arguing that the pandemic has created a global consciousness, Kaplan recommends that the West respond by strengthening its alliances. With this in mind, the second panel zeroes in on the following question: how do we cooperate with our rivals in a post-pandemic context? While the pandemic has intensified many rivalries, the fact remains that cooperation, even with rivals, is necessary to address the challenges and threats posed by the return of great power competition and the threat posed by revisionist states such as Iran.

3:30PM - 4:00PM – Student Panel – Best Paper Competition

4:00PM – 5:00PM – Networking Activity

For more information visit ras-nsa.ca