The United States Studies Centre invites you to the launch of its flagship conference, the Sydney International Strategy Forum.

Emerging from the throes of the pandemic, Australia and the United States now face an increasingly fragile strategic environment characterised by disruption and competition. Hosted by the United States Studies Centre, the inaugural Sydney International Strategy Forum brings together a group of prominent thought leaders, policymakers and industry experts to tackle the big issues confronting Australia, the United States and the Indo-Pacific.

Support for alliances is strong in Washington, as the ambitious AUKUS pact charts new territory in critical technologies and sovereign capabilities and diverse Indo-Pacific networks of bilateral, trilateral, and quadrilateral cooperation shape the regional balance of power. At the same time, US allies and partners are expressing concerns about the Biden administration’s industrial policy agenda and US-China trade and technology wars, underscoring the complexities of “friend shoring” and “de-risking” critical supply chains. On the US domestic front, a looming 2024 presidential race and the prospect of another Trump presidency also raises questions about the future of sustained US engagement in the world. From bolstering supply chain resiliency to turning AUKUS into reality, the Sydney International Strategy Forum will discuss the enormous risks and opportunities posed by these cross-cutting challenges.

Confirmed speakers

  • The Hon. Madeleine King MP is the Minister for Resources and Minister for Northern Australia. She was one of the inaugural leaders of the Perth USAsia Centre, helping to amplify the Western Australian voice in the regional foreign policy dialogue.
  • Senator the Hon. Simon Birmingham is Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs and Leader of the Opposition in the Senate. He has served in multiple ministry roles including Minister for Finance and Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment.
  • Michèle Flournoy is the Co-Founder of strategic consulting firm WestExec Advisors and bipartisan think tank Center for a New American Security, and most recently served as the US Under Secretary of Defense for Policy from February 2009 to February 2012.
  • Rep. Akihisa Nagashima is a member of the Japanese House of Representatives. He is also a visiting professor in the Graduate School of Public Policy of Chuo University.
  • The Hon. Kim Beazley AC is Former Deputy Prime Minister of Australia and was the 33rd Governor of Western Australia. He was also Ambassador to the United States of America from 2010 to 2016.
  • Admiral Phil Davidson was Commander of the United States Indo-Pacific Command from 2018 to 2021. He was a four-star admiral in the US Navy and his decorations include the Distinguished Service Medal and the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with Combat “V”.
  • Ambassador Kristen Silverberg is a former US Ambassador to the European Union and Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs. She is president and COO at Business Roundtable.
  • Dr Evan Medeiros is a Professor and Penner family Chair in Asia studies in the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University, Senior Fellow for Foreign Policy at the Asia Society Policy Institute’s Center for China Analysis, and a former top national security advisor in the White House.
  • Ryan Lizza is Politico’s Chief Washington Correspondent. He was formerly Senior Political Analyst for CNN and The New Yorker’s Washington correspondent from 2007 to 2017.
  • Dr Zack Cooper is a Senior Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. Previously he worked as assistant for to the deputy national security adviser for combatting terrorism at the White House National Security Council.
  • Olivia Nuzzi is Washington Correspondent for New York magazine. She has also written for Politico Magazine and The Washington Post. She was named in Forbes’ 2018 “30 under 30” list.

Panel discussions

  • US politics at the crossroads
    One year out from the US presidential election, what will US domestic political developments — including a potential second Trump presidency — mean for US foreign policy?
  • How far will US-China confrontation go?
    Both Washington and Beijing have made renewed attempts at diplomacy to cool tensions in the region, yet frictions around the future of Taiwan and economic coercion remain unabated. Where are the flashpoints and what can be done to stabilise the relationship and avoid future conflict?
  • AUKUS, the Quad and the future of alliances and partnerships
    AUKUS is picking up steam in its transition from scoping to implementation while the Quad continues to gain ground on agreed deliverables. As new multi- and mini-laterals emerge, how are relationships between allies and partners changing the strategic environment?
  • Navigating de-risking, disruption and emerging technology
    Risk management is king in the post-pandemic era as businesses and governments seek to shore up supply chains, strengthen cybersecurity and prepare for the future. What are the best strategies for mitigating ever more complex levels of disruption?