From 9 to 11 March 2020, Abigail Watson, ORG's Research Manager, took part in a symposium entitled "Future Land Challenges" at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. The event was part of the British Army’s Agile Warrior Programme, which examines the future of conflict and tries to understand what the British Army should look like in 2035.

On the last day, Abigail gave a talk on the risks of partnered military operations. Drawing on the lessons learned from ORG’s research, she laid out three major problems with partnered operations which challenge the conventional wisdom surrounding the practice:

  • Governments treat partnered operations as risk-free, but they are not. They can produce political backlashes and often yield significant civilian harm.
  • Partnered operations do not fix political problems.   
  • Partnered operations do not automatically buy influence.