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Sweden, NATO and the transatlantic relationship

2023-06-12 (kl. 10:00 - 11:15)
Linnégatan 14, 114 47 Stockholm

Folk och Försvar is delighted to invite you to a seminar focusing on Sweden, NATO and the transatlantic relationship with representatives from the RAND Corporation and the Swedish Defence Research Agency.

Sweden and the United States have a long history of partnership that has been nurtured through bilateral collaborations and mutual contributions within international organizations. As Sweden’s impending membership in NATO reaches the final stages of ratification, the deep-rooted partnership on security and defence will be further strengthened. However, this development is not a spontaneous occurrence, but the result of a long sequence of events, propelled by the shifting geopolitical dynamics of our time.

The full-scale invasion of Ukraine by Russia in 2022 marked a turning point in this narrative. By May of the same year, the Swedish government had made the crucial decision to apply for NATO membership, a decision anchored in the detailed security analysis presented in a comprehensive report. This decision set in motion a cascade of discussions, negotiations, and agreements, ultimately culminating in the Swedish government adopting a bill on Sweden’s NATO membership in March 2023.

Parallel to this development, the shifting sands of international security over the past decades have seen the United States recalibrating its focus. More attention is being directed towards the Pacific region, with China’s role in global politics coming under the spotlight. This shift was initiated in response to a reduction in defense spending across numerous European countries, following the dissolution of the Soviet Union. However, the invasion of Ukraine by Russia in February 2022 instigated a complete paradigm shift, necessitating a bolstering of defense capabilities at both national and international levels. How has this affected US foreign policy in the short and long term, and how have the priorities changed?

The security situation in Europe has also affected NATO and will have long-term consequences both for national defence planning and for the alliance. With Finland and Sweden’s memberships, NATO continues to evolve. What will Sweden’s role in NATO be and how does Sweden contribute to security? What are the acute threats and challenges facing NATO aside from the war in Ukraine?

All things considered, and with the war in Ukraine continuing and generating considerable support from the West, how does this affect the transatlantic relationship? Can the United States focus on both Europe and Asia in the future? What will NATO’s role be, and how can the organization contribute to stability?

These and many more questions will be discussed during the seminar.


Moderator: Pasi Huikuri, program manager security policy, Folk och Försvar

10:00 Introduction

Pasi Huikuri, program manager security policy, Folk och Försvar

The transatlantic relationship 

Ann Linde, former Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Sweden

The United States’ foreign policy into the 2030s

Barry Pavel, Vice President for RAND National Security Research Division

Panel discussion – Tackling the future of Russian military power and what that means for NATO, and specific issues for Sweden and Finland

Colin D. Smith, Senior International/Defense Researcher, RAND Corporation

Mike Winnerstig, Head of Department for Security Policy, Swedish Defence Research Agency

Magnus Christiansson, Associate Professor for War Studies, Swedish Defence University

11:15 Seminar ends

Please register to attend this seminar in person via the form below. (If you want to follow it live on our YouTube-channel you do not need to register).

The RAND Corporation is a research organization that develops solutions to public policy challenges to help make communities throughout the world safer and more secure, healthier and more prosperous. RAND is non-profit, nonpartisan, and committed to the public interest.

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