The document is a contribution to a growing body of knowledge and is aimed at the defence community. It seeks to build on previous editions of Global Strategic Trends with a more accessible format. It has a greater focus on defence and security issues and expands on other subjects, including resources, and the resurgence of ideology. From a comprehensive review of trends, it draws out 3 key themes: how we will adapt to the reality of a shifting climate and breakneck technological innovation (see the Human Environment); the dominance of the West in international affairs will fade and global power will become more evenly distributed between the West and the rising powers in Asia (see the Dynamics of Global Power); and finally, as society and the distribution of global power changes, the challenges to defence and security will increase (see Evolving Defence and Security Challenges). It draws lessons from contemporary events to conclude that globalisation is a more volatile process than previously envisaged and that this volatility may leave globalised systems more vulnerable to strategic shock and systemic failure. It also draws out high level global defence and security implications.
ORBIS is powered by ESPAS, the European Strategy and Policy Analysis System, a unique inter-institutional project aimed at strengthening the EU's efforts in the crucial area of forward planning. ESPAS brings together the European Commission, the European Parliament, the Secretariat General of the Council of the European Union and the European External Action Service to strengthen the Union's collective administrative capacity to identify and analyse the key trends and challenges, and the resulting policy choices, which are likely to confront Europe and the wider world in the decades ahead.