NATO’s Strategic ReviewPhoto: NATO. From the press conference by the NATO Secretary General - meeting of NATO Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Brussels, 6 and 7 April 2022.

NATO’s Strategic Review


Russia’s war in Ukraine, and the China challenge – which reforms are on the table?

Wednesday 27. April 2022, 16:00 until 17:30

Venue: Wergeland

Host: FHS / Institutt for forsvarsstudier

Entrance: Free - registration

This spring, NATO is discussing the future direction of the alliance. The process culminates at the summit 29–30 June 2022, when a future direction is to be determined. The war in Ukraine influences the process since Russia appears to be the dominant threat towards Europe. By contrast, the US continues to see China as threat number one even if France and Germany are not in favour of taking on China in the context of NATO.

Will the different threat perceptions of Europe and the US result in a division of labour leaving Europe in a key role in deterring Russia from more aggression in the region while the US concentrates on deterrence of China in the Indo-Pacific? What would be the consequences of such a division of labour for transatlantic cooperation? Will NATO be able to work out a division of labour with the EU? Which countries will continue to see terrorism and migration as top priorities, and how will this influence the strategic review?

This seminar will examine NATO’s strategic review process by discussing the dilemmas the alliance is facing at a time when a growing number of threats compete for the attention and resources of the member states. The war in Ukraine has given NATO a new lease on life, and the US and Europe stand united in the efforts to exert maximum pressure on Russia to end the war in Ukraine. However, the different threat perceptions remain a barrier to agree on a new direction for NATO. We will discuss if there are solutions that may help NATO move ahead despite the differences.

In this IFS seminar, we have invited three internationally renowned experts to explore the strategic dilemmas facing NATO.

  • Professor Liselotte Odgaard, Norwegian Institute for Defence Studies (IFS)
  • Associate Professor Robin Allers, Norwegian Institute for Defence Studies (IFS)
  • Deputy Leader Asle Toje, Norwegian Nobel Committee

The starting point of the seminar will be an open access article coming out soon: Liselotte Odgaard, “NATO’s China Role: Defending Cyber and Outer Space”, The Washington Quarterly, Spring Issue, April 2022.
We will provide a link to download the article free of charge after it is published.


15.45–16.00   Fruit, coffee, tea

16.00–16.05   Welcome, Head of Asia Programme, IFS,
Professor Øystein Tunsjø

16.05–16.20   Why NATO should take on China
Professor Liselotte Odgaard

16.20–16.35    European and US NATO Priorities
Associate Professor Robin Marc Allers

16.35–16.50   NATO’s strategic concept – history and future
Deputy Leader Asle Toje

16.50–17.30   Q&A