Strategic Security Analysis March 2020 | Issue 9: Strengthening Prevention with Better Anticipation: COVID-19 and Beyond

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By Ms Emily Munro, Deputy Head, Emerging Security Challenges, Geneva Centre for Security Policy

Key points

  • Prevention strategies warrant more attention and can be a framework to apply to situations with different levels of urgency. The cases of the Arctic, the Sahel and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic demonstrate the value of prevention strategies in diverse ways.

  • Anticipation is closely linked to prevention, and we should do more to understand how the future may unfold, and then act on the findings to help us to prevent crises and conflict.

  • The interaction of issues often lies at the centre of the policy challenges we face today. It is necessary to unpack these interactions in order to strengthen our responses.

  • Surprises cannot be entirely avoided, but we should place more emphasis on considering the implications of crises and ensure better integration of our approaches across the short, medium and long term.