‘BASIC is an independent, non-profit think tank working to safeguard humanity and Earth’s ecosystem from nuclear risks and interconnected security threats, for generations to come.’
We are delighted to formally announce BASIC’s new Mission Statement, given in full above.
Over the 12 months, BASIC has undertaken its most significant strategic review process in over a decade and finalised our internal five-year plan. This process has been led by the Executive Director, Sebastian Brixey-Williams, with extensive consultation with BASIC’s Board and Staff.
In undertaking the review, we decided to go back to first principles: to crystallise our understanding of the change that BASIC is seeking to deliver, and how we can use our resources most effectively to achieve impact.
During this process, we concluded that our previous mission statement focused too much on what we do (‘to build trust, reduce nuclear risks and advance disarmament’) and not enough on the underlying purpose of the organisation: to safeguard humanity and Earth’s ecosystem. A decision was therefore taken by the Board to rewrite our mission statement to better reflect our purpose and our values.
Our new mission statement reflects a green turn in BASIC’s thinking, placing the protection of non-sentient life and the biosphere as a whole on equal footing with that of humanity. This is both a principled and a pragmatic position. The security of humanity and the international state system can only be secure if it is underpinned by a stable and flourishing global ecosystem. The spiralling worldwide climate and extinction emergencies cannot and must not be considered independently of national and international security debates.
BASIC has for the past decade-and-a-half focused almost exclusively on nuclear risks to the exclusion of other chemical and biological weapons, conventional weaponry, and non-traditional security threats. The new inclusion of language on interconnected security threats signals our intention to re-embrace these issues; nuclear risk reduction and disarmament simply cannot be effectively addressed if it remains siloed. Moreover, this language signals the growing importance of human and ecological security in our thinking.
Finally, we hope to demonstrate our commitment to future generations through the inclusion of language on generations to come. War, nuclear risks, and the climate and extinction crises are all multi-generational phenomena, and can only be resolved with an eye to both the past and the future.
We look forward to working with you to fulfil our mission.