The Americas Series


You are cordially welcomed to attend this virtual conference series on transatlantic maritime security and strategy challenges! It pairs experts on naval strategy and maritime security from North, Central, and South America with European colleagues to exchange thoughts and perspectives on pressing security issues. Specifically, it will discuss selected American navies, be they naval warfighting forces, maritime security & logistics providers, or third parties.

Speakers from South, Central, and North American countries discuss recent naval strategic developments from their national (regional) point of view (15’-20’), such as capstone documents, major naval operations, procurement, major threats, and challenges. Where applicable, panelists from Europe will be invited. Speakers are specifically asked to focus on implications for NATO, the EU, Europe as a whole, and European navies. Followed by moderated Q&A. Length of event 75’-90’ (max.). Open for all who are interested. The event will be recorded and is on the record.

Engage with the speakers using the hashtag #AmericasNavies.  



Session 1 | 28.01.2021 - Sealift and Merchant Marine & US Coast Guard

Session 1 kicks off with two quasi-navies: Our distinguished speakers will present an overview of the U.S. Coast Guard, the 12th largest navy in the world if calculated by tonnage, and the sea-lift and merchant marine capabilities of the United States of America.

Speakers: Prof. Sal Mercogliano & Captain James Howe

Please click here for the registration or register at:


Video Recording of Session 1



Session 2 | 10.02.2021 - Americas as a market & Mexican Naval Strategy

Session 2 brings together two items of interest: First, the discussion will center on the North, South, and Latin America as a naval market. Second, an often overlooked maritime force and its strategy will be covered.

Speakers: Magiel Venema & Christian Ehrlich

Please click here for the registration or register at:


Video Recording of Session 2



Session 3 | 18.02.2020 - Canada & USA

Session 3 covers the two North American countries with rich naval tradition and sizeable navies. Canada and the United States are NATO navies and, as such, of utmost interest and relevance to transatlantic security.

Speakers: Timothy Choi & Prof. Peter Dombrowski

Please click here for the registration or register at:


Video Recording of Session 3



Session 4 | 08.03.2021 - Seapower from a South American Perspective & Colombian Naval Strategy

Session 4 brings us further south in the Americas. Our panelists will discuss maritime security challenges in Latin America and in particular the Colombian naval strategy.

Speakers: Dr. Samuel Rivera Páez & Rafael Uribe-Neira

Please click here for the registration or register at:


Video Recording of Session 4



Session 5 | 11.03.2021 - Brazilian Naval Strategy & China and IUU problems in South America

Session 5, our final session, pairs a perspective on China’s maritime influence in South America with a perspective on Brazilian naval strategy.

Speakers: Andrea Resende & Prof. Tabitha Grace Mallory

Please click here for the registration or register at:


Video Recording of Session 5




In addition, the ISPK’s CMSS conducted an expert roundtable on 16 February 2021 on the subject of “American Naval Strategy, Force Structure Planning, and the Future of Transatlantic Relations”. It was based on the December 2020 future naval force structure review. Shortly before Christmas, “Advantage at Sea”, the Tri-Service Maritime Strategy by the U.S. Navy, the U.S. Marine Corps, and the U.S. Coast Guard, was published. How many of these carefully crafted plans and policy will survive under the new presidential administration of Joe Biden? What does the future hold for the U.S. Navy, for its strategy, and its fleet architecture? What is the role of U.S. Congress? Why is all of this important to NATO allies in Europe?


Ronald O’Rourke, Congressional Research Service (CRS)

Bryan Clark & Timothy A. Walton, Hudson Institute Center for Defense Concepts and Technology


Sebastian Bruns, ISPK

Americas Series - Conference Report

Click here for the report.

Americas Series in the news & more links:

Navy Questioning How to Sustain Fleet in High-End Fight, Says Analyst

The article by John Grady reflects on the topic of the first Session of the Americas Series asking, how the US Navy can sustain its fleet in high-end warfare. Our two speakers Prof. Sal Mercogliano and Capt. James Howe are both mentioned in the article.

Click here to get to the article at USNI News

Speakers and panelists

Dr. Sebastian Bruns
Dr. Sebastian Bruns Center for Maritime Strategy and Security
Timothy Choi
Timothy Choi University of Calgary
Prof. Peter Dombrowski
Prof. Peter Dombrowski Naval War College
Christian Ehrlich
Christian Ehrlich Founding Director of Riskop
Capt. James Howe
Capt. James Howe US Coast Guard
Dr. Tabitha Grace Mallory
Dr. Tabitha Grace Mallory China Ocean Institute & University of Washington
Prof. Sal Mercogliano
Prof. Sal Mercogliano Campbell University
Andrea L. F. Resende de Souza
Andrea L. F. Resende de Souza PUC Minas
Dr. Samuel Rivera Páez
Dr. Samuel Rivera Páez Escuela Superior de Guerra
Rafael Uribe-Neira
Rafael Uribe-Neira Independent scholar
Magiel Venema
Magiel Venema Damen Shipyards


The Institute for Security Policy at Kiel University (ISPK) provides research, analysis and commentary on conflicts and strategic issues. ISPK is committed to furthering the security policy discourse in Germany and abroad by way of focused, interdisciplinary, policy-oriented research.