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September 12, 2017

Towards “Global Britain”: Challenging the New Narratives of National Decline

Henry Jackson Society

The reality of British geopolitical capability means Britain is poised to thrive post-Brexit

Is Britain in decline? Following the EU referendum, you could be forgiven for thinking so. Commentators seem gripped by the idea that the country is heading towards national decline.

This is simply not the case. New research from The Henry Jackson Society clearly demonstrates that the UK is well positioned to thrive post-Brexit.

Towards a ‘Global Britain’: Challenging the new narratives of national decline” takes aim at declinist narratives. The report sets out why the U.K. has strengths across a range of areas that will empower it in the years ahead, including in its economy, military and culture.

The report builds on the findings from ‘An Audit of Geopolitical Capability’, also released today, which shows the U.K. was second only to the United States in geopolitical power.

Sir Malcolm Rifkind, the former Foreign Secretary, commenting on the study, said:

“The Global Britain Programme at The Henry Jackson Society shows with its inaugural report – ‘An Audit of Geopolitical Capability’ – that Britain is a cultural superpower, second only to the United States in its ability to propel liberal and democratic values around the world.”

Dr. Alan Mendoza, Executive Director of The Henry Jackson Society, said:

“There is endless talk about Britain being ‘finished’ as a major power as a consequence of Brexit. In fact, we remain the second most powerful country in the world across a basket of indicators. We now need a Global Britain strategy to accompany this reality, providing the springboard for future national success into the Brexit era.”  

The author of the report and Director of the Global Britain Programme at The Henry Jackson Society, James Rogers, said:

“Declinist narratives are never productive. They sap at any nation’s confidence and wellbeing. Irrespective of one’s stance in relation to ‘Leaving’ or ‘Remaining’ inside the European Union, we need at this moment concrete suggestions and proposals that seek to empower the United Kingdom as it accelerates its withdrawal.”

“At the broadest strategic level, this is what our latest report tries to do. It explains how declinists have often been wrong before; it explains Britain’s unique national geopolitical strengths; and it proposes solution to capitalise on those strengths.”

To read the full report click here. To download ‘The Geography of British Power’ map, click here.