As Australia adapts to an altered security landscape, it is more important than ever to look beyond the headlines to understand views and access ideas from across the nation on how strategic policy can and should evolve.

The alliance with the United States remains the single most important element in Australia’s approach to managing strategic change in the Indo-Pacific. While there is an active debate among Australia’s expert foreign policy and defence communities about the future of alliance cooperation, much less is known about the views of Australians who are not professionally engaged in these issues.

With that in mind, this project elicited detailed perspectives from Australians drawn from all of the nation’s states and territories through an extensive national consultation process. Over the course of 29 workshops, researchers spoke to 232 diverse participants in an open discussion that was framed by the following three questions:

  • What is the alliance for, is it important to Australia, and why?
  • How can and should Australia leverage the alliance to navigate the profound security challenges it confronts?
  • What should future cooperation with the US look like — or not?
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