RSS
Defence and Military Analysis

Defence and Military Analysis

As military concepts and technologies adjust to changing security threats, this IISS research programme is on top of the latest in global strategy, capabilities and expenditure.

The Military Balance

Indispensable defence data and analysis

The Military Balance 2017 and our new complementary database, Military Balance+, were both launched on 14 February. Harnessing pioneering technology, Military Balance+ allows users to customise, view, compare and download data instantly, anywhere, anytime.

  • Military Balance Blog

    2017: year of the aircraft carrier

    27 February 2017.  2017 will see major milestones reached in a number of aircraft-carrier programmes around the world. These will have significant implications for both carrier and general naval power developments in the coming years.

  • Military Balance Blog

    China's aircraft and missile developments - implications for the F-35

    24 February 2017.    At the launch of The Military Balance 2017, Douglas Barrie, IISS Senior Fellow for Military Aerospace, talks about the significance of China’s aircraft and air-to-air missile developments. 'The pace and the introduction is almost unheralded,' he says. The People’s Liberation Army Air Force is developing a capable palette of air-to-air weapons that could make the air environment more difficult for the F-35 and supporting aircraft. Watch the full launch. The Military Balance 2017 features analysis...

  • Events

    Harsh Lessons: Iraq, Afghanistan and the Changing Character of War

    23 February 2017. 

    Book Launch
    Brigadier (Retired) Ben Barry OBE, Senior Fellow for Land Warfare, IISS
    Arundel House, London
    Thursday 23 February 2017, 12.30–1.30pm GMT

  • Military Balance Blog

    NATO’s Enhanced Forward Presence: reassurance and deterrence

    20 February 2017.  A new NATO force lacks the size and power to deter Russian attacks on its own. But it will boost the cohesion and combat-readiness of NATO allies.

  • Military Balance Blog

    A federated way ahead for NATO in an age of complexity

    15 February 2017.  NATO faces a set of security challenges that are unprecedented in their complexity and potentially increasing gravity, argues a new paper written by the IISS ahead of the Alliance’s March Transformation Seminar. Its calls for NATO to adopt a ‘persistent federated approach’ to its commitments and relationships both within the Alliance and among its members, so that it can benefit from the capabilities and expertise of member nations, and deliver...

  • The Military Balance

    The Military Balance 2017

    14 February 2017.  The Military Balance 2017 includes new equipment analysis graphics, a wall chart comparing US forces in Europe in 1989 and 2017 and essays on the changing defence-industrial landscape, special-operations forces, and twenty-first-century challenges to twentieth-century deterrence.

  • The Military Balance

    Chapter 6: Asia

    14 February 2017.  Asia: Regional military roles; The South China Sea and Washington’s regional role; Southeast Asian states’ defence cooperation; Indian Air Force: fleet-recapitalisation challenges remain; Southeast Asia: capability enhancements; Northeast Asia; THAAD deployment in South Korea; Defence Economics; Macroeconomics; Asian defence spending; Procurement; Defence industry

    Australia
    China: National-security legislation; Organisational reform; Theatre commands: responsible for war fighting; Armed services: responsible for building the force; Work in progress; PLA training in 2016; PLA Army organisation; People’s Liberation Army Air Force; People’s Liberation Army Navy; Defence Economics; Overhauling defence R&D; Realising the potential of civil–military integration; Diversifying defence-budget sources; China and the Third Offset Strategy
    Japan
    Myanmar’s armed forces: privileges maintained
    Vietnam: New strategy document; Twelfth National Congress; Defence policy and capability; Foreign defence relations; Defence economics

  • The Military Balance

    Chapter 7: Middle East and North Africa

    14 February 2017.  Middle East and North Africa: Russia changes the battlefield; The campaign against ISIS; The Iraqi Army; The war in Yemen; Yemen and GCC military cooperation; Regional capabilities increase; Defence Economics; Macroeconomics; Defence spending and procurement; Defence industry; Emirates Defence Industries Company

    Saudi Arabia: Defence policy; The armed forces; Defence and security cooperation and coalitions; Operations in Yemen; Defence economics and industry

  • The Military Balance

    Chapter 3: North America

    14 February 2017.  United States: Return of great-power competition; Third Offset Strategy; Readiness issues; Modernisation challenges; Army; US Marine Corps; US Air Force; US Navy; US Coast Guard; Defence Economics; FY2017 Defense Budget Request; Budget turmoil continues; Planning for the future

    Canada

  • The Military Balance

    Chapter 10: Country comparisons and defence data

    14 February 2017.  Selected training activity 2016
    International comparisons of defence expenditure and military personnel
    Global distribution of main battle tanks, 2016
    Principal surface combatants and patrol ships over 9,500 tonnes full-load displacement
    Select unmanned maritime systems in service, by weight
    Military ISR satellites: operational totals 
    Precision-guided munitions: increasing use by Western forces, 1991–2011 
    Selected non-state armed groups: observed forces and equipment holdings 

Latest Posts

A federated way ahead for NATO in an age of complexity

In a new paper, the IISS calls for NATO to adopt a 'persistent federated approach’ in the face of unprecedentedly complex security challenges.