Mark Leonard

The rule-maker race

In the coming decades, the question of who sets the global rules, standards, and norms guiding technology, trade, and economic development will be paramount. Having lost their exclusive prerogative in this domain, some Western governments have begun to rethink the universality of the rules-based order.

Why COP26 will fail

UN Climate Change Conferences have failed to produce a model of global governance that can tame power politics, let alone forge a sense of shared destiny among countries. And there is little reason to believe this time will be different.

The false promise of AUKUS

In their new security and technology arrangement with Australia, America and Britain have achieved tactical gains at the expense of strategic goals in the Indo-Pacific. In fact, given how deeply the deal has divided the West, the biggest long-term winner may well be China.

The Afghan tragedy and the age of unpeace

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.

Germany’s patriotism paradox

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.

Germany’s Green Velvet Revolution?

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

The new China shock

China’s new strategy for achieving economic self-reliance and geopolitical dominance poses an unprecedented challenge to the West

The Russia strategy Europe needs

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”

The crisis of American power

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