The question of how the EU should deal with the world’s rising powers will dominate the informal Gymnich foreign ministers’ meeting and the European Council meeting over the next week. In a memo to European leaders, François Godement and Mark Leonard argue that the financial crisis may have increased Europe’s leverage when it deals with Beijing
Areas of expertise
Geopolitics and Geoeconomics; China; EU-Russia relations; transatlantic relations; EU politics and institutions; public diplomacy and nation branding; UK foreign policy
English, French, German
Mark Leonard is co-founder and director of the European Council on Foreign Relations, the first pan-European think tank. His topics of focus include geopolitics and geoeconomics, China, EU politics and institutions.
Leonard hosts the weekly podcast “Mark Leonards’s World in 30 Minutes” and writes a syndicated column on global affairs for Project Syndicate. Previously he worked as director of foreign policy at the Centre for European Reform and as director of the Foreign Policy Centre, a think tank he founded at the age of 24 under the patronage of former British Prime Minister Tony Blair. In the 1990s, Leonard worked for the think tank Demos where his Britain™ report was credited with launching Cool Britannia. Mark has spent time in Washington, D.C. as a Transatlantic Fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the United States, and in Beijing as a visiting scholar at the Chinese Academy for Social Sciences.
He was Chairman of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Geoeconomics until 2016.
Honoured as a “Young Global Leader” of the World Economic Forum, he spends a lot of time helping governments, companies, and international organisations make sense of the big geo-political trends of the twenty-first century. He is a regular speaker and prolific writer and commentator on global issues, the future of Europe, China’s internal politics, and the practice of diplomacy and business in a networked world. His essays have appeared in publications such as Foreign Affairs, the Financial Times, the New York Times, Le Monde, Süddeutsche Zeitung, El Pais, Gazeta Wyborcza, Foreign Policy, the New Statesman, the Daily Telegraph, The Economist, Time, and Newsweek.
As well as writing and commenting frequently in the media on global affairs, Leonard is the author of best-selling books. His first book, Why Europe will run the 21st Century, was published in 2005 and translated into 19 languages. Leonard’s second book, What does China think? was published in 2008 and translated into 15 languages. He has published an edited volume on Connectivity Wars and in September 2021, his latest book on this topic “The Age of Unpeace. How Connectivity Causes Conflict” will be released.
Building the EAS is not simply about backroom Brussels politics and bureaucratic infighting. It is about giving Europe the means to punch its weight in a changing world
Response to the Haiti tragedy; the struggling mission in Afghanistan; the economic crisis. The west is in a ’20 year crisis’.
Western governments need to show they are getting serious. Otherwise we will end up with another Copenhagen.
The EU needs to take a good look at its relations and position in the world ? Lady Ashton is well placed to integrate its strengths
ECFR publishes a collection of views from key Russian intellectuals
Open letter: Twenty years after half of Europe was freed, a new wall is being built – across Georgia
The next generation of EU technocrats will need to be populists as well
With the pivotal change of leadership in Washington, the US and the EU may have an ideal moment to strengthen the US-EU institutional bond
Once he enters office, President Obama will bring a profound challenge to the comfortable introversion of many EU governments
Europe’s covid-19 experience has been a tale of two pandemics – and the differences in each story could haunt the continent for many years to come
To engage more confidently with a world that is changing, outward-looking Germans need to shape a progressive new national identity before it is defined by the forces of isolation and exclusion
The EU should become a global standard-setter for the energy transition, and prepare to manage the profound geopolitical repercussions of the Green Deal in its relationships with its neighbourhood
Most Europeans rejoiced at Joe Biden’s victory in the US presidential election, but they do not think he can help America make a comeback as the pre-eminent global leader
To manage in this new world, the EU and its members need to embark on a broad-based effort to recover their strategic sovereignty
The Trump years galvanised Europeans’ efforts to strengthen their own sovereignty; they now need to agree concrete offers they can make to the new administration
The shock of covid-19 in Britain may end the culture-wars politics set off by the Brexit referendum
New research reveals that the crisis has revolutionised citizens’ perceptions of global order – scrambling the distinctions between nationalism and globalism
Introduction The last five years have not been kind to the European Union’s foreign policy. The EU has been less relevant, less active, and less…
The EU needs to learn to think like a geopolitical power
The end of the US-led “forever war” in Afghanistan will not bring peace, because the methods that countries use to attack each other have changed. The world has entered a new age of perpetual competition among powerful states.
New polling shows that German citizens have begun to sour on the European project. If German politicians do not revise how they talk about Europe, this change could have disastrous consequences.
While Germany’s long-ruling centre-right parties continue to offer more of the same, the Greens have recently emerged as a serious contender in the run-up to September’s federal elections
China’s new strategy for achieving economic self-reliance and geopolitical dominance poses an unprecedented challenge to the West
The European Union should be in no hurry either to engage with Russian President Vladimir Putin’s regime or to force a diplomatic crisis. Rather than vacillating between resets and crackdowns, the EU should pursue a strategy of “principled indifference”
While America’s crisis of democracy has been clear to see in recent months, equally consequential is its crisis of power on the world stage
Mark Leonard and Jeremy Shapiro predict ten bright and bold policy projections for the year to come
Many people in the European Union’s wealthiest states feel powerless to shape its future
Even with a new, far more sympathetic US administration, it will be incumbent on Europe to come to the table as a co-equal power bearing solutions, rather than as a helpless child begging for protection and guidance
The normalisation of relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates (followed quickly by Bahrain) indicates that the Middle East is undergoing a strategic paradigm shift, with the Palestinians left out in the cold. But anyone who thinks that the region’s oldest ongoing conflict has been laid to rest should think again.
New ECFR/YouGov research reveals huge fluidity in current voting intentions: 70 percent of Europeans certain to vote are yet to make their choice. Nearly 100m swing voters are up for grabs.
Mark Leonard presents the main themes of his new book and talks particularly about how China’s growing role in this interconnected world poses threats for Europe
Get a sneak peek into Mark Leonard’s latest book “The Age of Unpeace – How Connectivity Causes Conflict”, read by the author himself
How will the Western withdrawal impact on the state of European defence and military capabilities?
How deep are the divides between the SPD’s foreign policy and that of the parties they’re running against?