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Scientific Discourse Role in the UK National Security Strategy Transformation
Analysis and Forecasting. IMEMO Journal

Scientific Discourse Role in the UK National Security Strategy Transformation

DOI: 10.20542/afij-2021-4-72-84
© Alexander A. ALESHIN, 2021
Received 23.10.2021.
Accepted 22.11.2021.
Alexander A. ALESHIN (, ORCID: 0000-0002-7872-3298,
Primakov National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations, Russian Academy of Sciences (IMEMO), 23, Profsoyuznaya Str., Moscow, 117997, Russian Federation.
The research is devoted to the influence of scientific discourse on international relations. Three levels were identified - national foreign policy, interstate and supranational. This article focuses on a national-level study using the example of the UK. The withdrawal of the UK from the EU led to the transformation of the country's foreign policy identity. Today, in a new form and under new conditions, W. Churchill's idea of three equivalent roles for the UK – influence in Europe, in the Commonwealth and cooperation with the USA – is being re-incorporated into it.
The scientific and expert community occupies an important place in the process of forming UK's foreign policy identity. Due to the authority of a number of British think tanks and the deep involvement of scientists in the process of national strategic planning, it plays a significant role in the planning of UK government policy.
In the research, using the method of discourse analysis, the example of seven leading think tanks, and the approaches of the scientific and expert community to understanding the key problems and transformation of the UK national security strategy were studied. The analysis revealed a split in the positions of British researchers both on the problem of the UK’s future place in the world, and on the issue of government measures necessary to implement the most beneficial scenarios for the country's national interests. The impossibility of accurately predicting the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic and relations with the EU in the field of security gives rise to polar points of view about the UK's future foreign policy subjectivity.
According to the author, all the think tanks use the methodology of political realism in their research, which determines the primacy of the factors of power in the British scientific discourse. This limits the possibilities for long-term planning of foreign policy. The author sees the mostly tactical, adaptive and reactionary nature of the approaches of the British political elites to foreign and defense policy. However, the 2021 Comprehensive Review revealed a tendency towards a clearer understanding and formulation by political elites of the country's place in the world, which, including thanks to scientific political discourse, will continue to develop.

For citation:

Aleshin A. Scientific Discourse Role in the UK National Security Strategy Transformation. Analysis & Forecasting. Journal of IMEMO, 2021, no 4, pp. 72-84.

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