RUSI sets up research programme on Challenges in Sanctions Design and Implementation

RUSI's headquarters in London's Whitehall

RUSI’s headquarters in London’s Whitehall

National defence and security Think Tank the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) has announced the establishment of a new research initiative which aims to refine sanctions as an instrument of coercive diplomacy. The programme of research will be supported by a Working Group on Transatlantic Sanctions composed of experts from both the public and private sectors.

Sanctions have become a common feature of international approaches towards addressing threats to peace and security. Yet despite the growing body of experience regarding their use, major difficulties in sanctions design and implementation persist.

RUSI aims to understand and help tackle these challenges by setting up a programme of work dedicated to examining the design, implementation, enforcement and monitoring of sanctions with a Working Group of internationally renowned experts at its epicentre.

Meeting in London and New York, these experts will discuss the design and implementation of sanctions regimes, including those aimed at combating terrorism, military aggression, nuclear and missile programmes as well as Human Rights abuses.

The Working Group’s discussions will advance collaboration on sanctions regimes, with a particular focus on co-ordinating US and European approaches. Members will give detailed and timely consideration to their experiences with recent sanctions, including with innovations in sanctions design. Findings from the Working Goup’s first round of discussions will be detailed in a report to be published early next year.

Broader RUSI research programme

This Working Group will inform a broader RUSI research programme. Prominent RUSI experts will examine and propose approaches to refining the UK’s use of economic sanctions as a tool of coercive diplomacy.

On top of this, the programme will also conduct research on the implementation of country-based sanctions regimes, such as those on Iran, North Korea, Russia and Syria, as well as provide assistance for both Governments and companies seeking to comply with sanctions regulations.

Dr Justine Walker, director of financial crime (sanctions and bribery) at the British Bankers’ Association, commented: “We view the creation of RUSI’s new research programme as an important development, and welcome the opportunity to support this initiative as it advances the necessary analysis and debate.”

Tom Keatinge (director of RUSI’s Centre for Financial Crime and Security Studies) and Andrea Berger (deputy director of proliferation and nuclear policy at the Think Tank) jointly added: “Countries continue to use sanctions as a key tool for addressing threats to international peace and security.”

This initiative is funded by a collection of public and private sector partners. Headed by Tom Keatinge, Andrea Berger and Sarah Lain (Research Fellow at RUSI), it builds on RUSI’s long-standing expertise in country-based sanctions regimes, trends and tactics in sanctions evasion and approaches towards combating financial crime.

*For more information on this new RUSI initiative click here

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

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