The last decade has witnessed political, technological, demographic, ecological, and economic developments that, in combination, are creating an international environment more challenging to Canada’s interests and values than at any time since 1945.
Canada’s foreign policy has not yet systematically addressed these challenges and risks. Aside from the realm of multilateral trade, which has seen concerted effort and success, successive Canadian governments have devoted insufficient strategic attention or political capital to crafting and implementing a 21st century foreign policy.
The ten strategic choices in this paper are based on a dialogue among a group of Canadian international policy experts who, while representing different professional backgrounds and political alignments, commonly acknowledge the instability of the current moment and the imperative of articulating the choices Canada confronts. This dialogue does not attempt to recommend a single course of action for Canada. Rather, it identifies a range of key strategic choices Canadian governments will need to make in order to advance the security and prosperity of Canadians and to contribute to shaping the world around us in the years ahead.