25 Aug Surveying the Nation: Public Opinion on Foreign Policy – 2023 Annual Survey Launch
The British Foreign Policy Group published its sixth major annual survey of public opinion on UK foreign policy, with the support of J.L Partners and Integrity. The survey charts the key trends in public perceptions of the UK’s international activity, as Britons respond to an increasingly turbulent geopolitical environment.
In this official launch event, the BFPG’s Director Evie Aspinall was joined by Lord Peter Ricketts, Baroness Gisela Stuart of Edgbaston, and Jim Hughes to dissect the findings of the report, and to examine the international and domestic context influencing British citizens’ perceptions of our foreign policy, and the ways in which this might evolve in the coming years. As we move into an era of more complex global threats, ensuring that foreign policy is based on the consent of the British people will provide a more robust foundation on which the UK can act with confidence and legitimacy on the world stage.
Lord Peter Ricketts, GCMG, GCVO
Lord Peter Ricketts spent 40 years as a member of the Diplomatic Service, finishing his postings as Ambassador to France (2012-16). Before that he was the UK’s first National Security Adviser (2010-12), and in that role was the coordinator of the 2010 National Security Strategy and Strategic Defence and Security Review. He was Permanent Under Secretary at the FCO and Head of the Diplomatic Service from 2006 – 2010. Lord Ricketts spent much of his career working on politico-military issues and crisis management, including spells as the FCO Political Director and Permanent Representative to NATO. Lord Ricketts is a Visiting Professor at King’s College London, holds Honorary Degrees from the Universities of London, Kent and Bath, and is an Honorary Fellow of Pembroke College Oxford.
Baroness Gisela Stuart of Edgbaston
Baroness Gisela Stuart is a Crossbench member of the House of Lords. Baroness Stuart was the Labour MP for Birmingham Edgbaston from 1997 to 2017, was a Health Minister in the first Tony Blair government, and served on the Foreign Affairs and Defence Committees. In 2015, Baroness Stuart was appointed by the Prime Minister to join the Intelligence and Security Committee and was made a Privy Councillor, and in the 2016 EU referendum, Baroness Stuart chaired the official ‘Vote Leave’ campaign. In 2022 Gisela became the First Civil Service Commissioner. Baroness Stuart is an Honorary Captain in the Royal Naval Reserve, is a Board member of the Royal Navy Strategic Studies Centre, and sits on the advisory board of the Global Strategy Forum, a forum focussing on foreign affairs, defence and international security issues.
Jim is Integrity’s Chief Operating Officer and a Board Director. Jim holds 25 years’ experience in project management, risk management, strategy development, and operational planning, both within and outside of conflict-affected environments. Jim has extensive operational experience of working with international and national partners. He has worked at the centre of UK Government in the Ministry of Defence, and in partnership with the Cabinet Office, the FCDO, the Home Office, and the Department for Transport.
Evie Aspinall is the Director of the British Foreign Policy Group (BFPG). She is a social and political researcher specialising in UK foreign policy, with a particular focus on domestic consent for foreign policy. She was formerly Head UK Youth Delegate to the G7 and President of Cambridge University Students’ Union. Evie holds a BA from the University of Cambridge and an MSc from King’s College London. Her primary research interests are climate change, the transatlantic relationship and the Indo-Pacific.