The partnership between the European Union (EU) and the United States (U.S.) is of central importance in addressing a multitude of complex global challenges. Despite recurrent ups and downs, EU-U.S. cooperation remains the most economically significant and integrated relationship in the world. Europe and the United States have long been drivers of global economic prosperity, accounting for half of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP, 40 percent of trade, and 80 percent of official development assistance. Yet it has been the political and security arenas that have always provided the crucial test of the partnership’s effectiveness, durability, and solidarity. The capstone of this partnership was the inauguration of the New Transatlantic Agenda in 1995,which has emerged as a core element of the transatlantic relationship by promoting and encouraging a transatlantic response to global security challenges and promoting, inter alia, peace and stability.
In the spirit of the New Transatlantic Agenda and within the framework of the European Commission’s pilot project, “Transatlantic Methods for Handling Global Challenges in the European Union and United States,” an effort was undertaken to assess the current state of the EU-U.S. security relationship and offer recommendations on fostering common approaches and enhancing its capacity to deal with emerging challenges. The research, “EU-U.S. Security Strategies: Comparative Scenarios and Recommendations,” was undertaken by a transatlantic team led by the Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI) in Rome and including scholars from the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, the French Fondation pour la Recherche Stratégique (FRS), and the Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI). Generously funded by the European Commission’s Directorate General External Relations
(DG RELEX), the main purpose of the “EU-U.S. Security Strategies” project was to provide European and American policymakers with insight, inputs, ideas, and tools to enhance and deepen transatlantic dialogue on four security issues of common concern for the European Union and the United States and to identify potential transatlantic convergences.
The four subject areas were identified as follows:
■■ The definition of external security and related European and American implementation models. The research partners examined how Europeans and Americanshave defined external security and conducted strategic security reviews. They
compared recent American and French national security reviews, the 2003 European Security Strategy (ESS) and its subsequent review in 2008, and the 2010 NATO Strategic Concept.
■■ The nexus between internal and external security and how various threats can be addressed by the EU and the United States.
The research team examined the blurring borders between internal and external security and cross-border threats in the areas of cyber security, biosecurity, pandemic preparedness and response, and disaster preparation and response.
■■ Current trends in the defense and security market and related industrial perspectives in Europe and the United States. The research team examined the American and European security and defense industrial bases and determined that both are undergoing a comprehensive restructuring to better respond to contemporary challenges with the security industrial base and market requiring the more dramatic transformation.
Both the EU and the United States are struggling to make the security market more efficient, with different methods and
with mixed success.
■■ EU-U.S. cooperation for today’s transatlantic security challenges. The research team assessed transatlantic cooperation on four complex security problems, including a nuclear-armed Iran, Afghanistan, the Haiti earthquake and natural disasters, and piracy off the coast of Somalia and suggest that the evolving global security environment requires better organization and enhanced capability within the EU and a stronger, direct EU-U.S. security relationship.