We at BASIC would like to reassure our friends and colleagues that we are taking active measures to adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The BASIC offices have been closed since Monday to protect our staff and help contain the spread of the virus within the London community. We are working from our homes to deliver our programme work and maintain close digital contact with our key stakeholders. Looking forward, we are curious to see how the new arrangements will affect our future working habits.
Given that BASIC’s mandate is to build international trust, reduce strategic risks, and advance multilateral disarmament – often through face-to-face dialogues bringing together diverse groups – this virus poses novel challenges to the ways we work.
It is difficult to predict with any certainty how we will deliver some of our planned activities in the coming year, but we are exploring the different ways that we can adapt our work to overcome the restrictions and meet a new timetable.
This includes the likely postponement of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference that is due to take place in April-May 2020. We intend to use this time to strengthen our deliverables for that conference and do some deep reflecting about BASIC’s role in the world.
When safe to do so, we will resume face-to-face dialogues that bring together communities that do not usually meet. However, we will also adapt our working methods by employing digital solutions to connect the world.
Most strikingly, this virus clearly illustrates how certain global challenges can only be resolved through global cooperation rather than blame. The uncertainties and instabilities that may follow from the pandemic and expected global recession more than ever require organisations like BASIC to foster a global culture of cooperation.
If you would like to support us in this mission, you can Become a Friend of BASIC from just £2.50 a month or £25 a year.
Stay safe and take care of each other.
Sebastian and Marion