EPSC

Rethinking Strategic Autonomy in the Digital Age

Issue 30
18 July 2019

In the 21st century, those who control digital technologies are increasingly able to influence economic, societal and political outcomes. In this context, the growing ‘geopoliticisation’ of technology implies a paradigm change for the notion of strategic autonomy.

‘Rethinking Strategic Autonomy in the Digital Age’ argues that the EU’s ability to defend and promote its interests – as well as its credibility as a strong foreign policy actor – is ever more a function of its cyber resilience and technology leadership.

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High-Level Hearing

Strategic Autonomy in the Digital Age | 17 December 2018

Mastery of digital technologies has become an integral determinant of strategic autonomy, affecting today’s cyber resilience as well as future capabilities. While digitalisation and ubiquitous connectivity expose nations to new threats and vulnerabilities, a weakening of the EU’s industrial and technological base led to an overreliance on non-EU components in the value chains of certain sectors. These developments give rise to growing concerns over security of supply and the integrity of critical information infrastructure.

Faced with this changing paradigm, the EPSC chose to reflect on the question of how Europe can best protect its strategic interests in the digital age.