GCSP Annual Report 2021

GCSP Annual Report 2021

GCSP Annual Report 2021

Transformative Journeys to Create a Safer World

The Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP) presents its 2021 Annual Report. 

Message from the Director 

We are living through a watershed moment in global history. The world is emerging from a major pandemic, experiencing seismic shifts in great power rivalry, dealing with an inter-connected set of threats and challenges, and facing the impact of the first major war in Europe since WWII.

This has created an unpredictable security environment. People are trying to make sense of these dramatic developments, understand and manage risks, and learn how to adapt to the challenges and opportunities created by change. This makes the GCSP more relevant than ever. 

In these turbulent times, GCSP creates and nurtures safe spaces for dialogue, educates and gives policy advice to decision-makers who can lead us through crisis, and helps to de-escalate tensions and rebuild relations between states.. In a polarized world where there is a dearth of constructive multilateralism or diplomatic dialogue the GCSP provides rare opportunities for like-minded and non-likeminded people to meet, discuss issues of mutual interest, and deal with common challenges. 

In such turbulent times, it is important for GCSP to remain agile. In 2021, my first year as the director of the Centre, we dedicated our efforts to strengthening the capacity of the Centre: building on the strong tradition and expertise of education and augmenting our ability to facilitate dialogue, provide policy advice and spark innovation. We have learned lessons from adjusting to the pandemic, for example by making more effective use of technology and distance learning to strengthen links with alumni and reach a wider community. I want to thank all the Staff, our Fellows, and our community of experts for pulling together during these challenging times and for demonstrating their commitment to GCSP’s mission of advancing peace, security and international cooperation. 

Challenges lie ahead: from great power rivalry to climate change, coping with the knock-on effects of the pandemic, understanding the impact of technology on security and human rights, and rebuilding order in the international system. But there are also opportunities created by a change in consciousness about the need for more cooperative approaches to security, the contribution of science to diplomacy and development, and growing opportunities for a much wider range of actors – including women, youth, minorities, civil society, local governments and the private sector – to engage in processes that promote safer societies and a more peaceful world. 

We need to nurture these opportunities through education, dialogue and innovation. And we need to try to mitigate the risks through more effective early warning, prevention, strategic anticipation and risks management. 

We also need to support those who are trying to resolve conflicts, make peace, and achieve cooperation. We will therefore continue to put a strong emphasize on supporting diplomatic dialogue, providing tailor-made executive education, and supporting countries in leadership positions – including Switzerland as it prepares to take a non-permanent seat in the United Nations Security Council in 2023. Furthermore, in 2022 we will adopt a medium-term strategy that should provide the GCSP with a strategic perspective while remaining flexible enough to adapt to the challenges of change. 

This annual report showcases GCSP’s work. Our motto has been to provide solutions to global challenges. Much work lies ahead.

Ambassador Thomas Greminger GCSP Director 


Read the Annual Report 2021