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Foreign Policy Centre

Ideas for a fairer world


What the UK and US think: Shared values or differing interests in public attitudes to foreign policy?

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DATE: Thursday 6 September 2012

TIME: 6.00-7.30pm

VENUE: Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) Room (off Westminster Hall), Houses of Parliament, London SW1A 0AA


  • Rt Hon John Spellar MP, Shadow Foreign Office Minister
  • Dr Rob Johns, Senior Lecturer, Department of Government, University of Essex
  • Dr Thomas Scotto, Senior Lecturer, Department of Government, University of Essex
  • Joe Twyman, Director, Political and Social Research, YouGov

Chair: Carola Hoyos,Defence Correspondent,Financial Times

At this Foreign Policy Centre and University of Essex event, some of the key findings of a recent large-scale ESRC-funded cross-country study into public attitudes towards foreign policy will be presented and analysed. The attitudes of the British public on specific foreign affairs issues will be compared to the attitudes of Americans on issues including military intervention, the NATO mission in Afghanistan and nuclear weapons, amongst many others.

The implications of these results will also be discussed with a broad panel of speakers including politicians, journalists, pollsters and academics including what they show about how public opinion impacts on foreign policymaking in different countries and what implications that might have for coordinated foreign policymaking by the 'West', both now and in the future, especially given current constraints on public spending. Public opinion and foreign policy academics from the Netherlands, Germany, Italy and Turkey will also offer insights on how the publics of these and other European nations stand on issues related to foreign policy.

A video podcast showing the event is available here

Download event invite - What the UK and US think about foreign policy (70 kilobyte PDF)