Royal United Services Institute

Royal United Services Institute

name = Royal United Services Institute for Defence and Security Studies
established = 1831
city = London
country = United Kingdom
Research = Military Science , International Security Studies, Homeland Security & Resilience
Publications = RUSI Journal, RUSI Newsbrief, RUSI Defence Systems, Whitehall Papers
type = non-profit, membership and research organisation
website = []
The Royal United Services Institute (in full the Royal United Services Institute for Defence and Security Studies and commonly abbreviated to RUSI) is a British defence and security think tank. It was founded in 1831 by the Duke of Wellington. [ [ Royal United Services Institute Web Site] ]

RUSI describes itself as

As of September 2007, RUSI Director is Professor Michael Clarke and its Chairman is Sir Paul Lever.

"FRUSI" is a five letter abbreviation for Fellow of RUSI.


RUSI was founded in 1831, the oldest such institute in the world, at the initiative of the Duke of Wellington. Its original mission was to study naval and military science, what Clausewitz called the ‘art of war’.

The Duke of Wellington spearheaded the establishment of RUSI in a letter to "Colbourn's United Service Journal" arguing for a ‘a United Service Museum’ should be formed, managed entirely by naval and military officers, and under patronage of the monarch, then King George IV, and the commanders-in-chief of the armed forces. Such an institution would prove that the two professions have entered the lists of science, and are ready to contend for honours ‘tam Artibus quam Armis’.

Subsequently, Commander Henry Downes Royal Navy assembled a group with a view to forming a committee for action, to which King George’s First ADC was commanded to convey ‘His Majesty’s gracious and high approbation of the undertaking and of the principles on which it is proposed to conduct it', which were stated to be suitable for 'a strictly scientific and professional society, and not a club'. The death of the King delayed matters, but the Duke of Clarence expressed his readiness to become a patron so, encouraged by the powerful support of the Duke of Wellington, the First Aide-de-camp, Sir Herbert Taylor, re-submitted the project to King William IV, and was able to assure the committee that ‘it could proceed under his Majesty's gracious auspices.’

On 25 June 1831 the committee met. The chair was taken by Major General Sir Howard Douglas, in his person a symbol of the ‘United Service’: a soldier who was the leading expert on naval gunnery. The resolution that the institution be established was put by the future Field Marshal Viscount Hardinge and seconded by the future Rear-Admiral Sir Francis Beaufort, the famous hydrographer. The first title adopted was ‘the Naval and Military Museum’, altered in 1839 to ‘the United Service Institution’, and to ‘the Royal United Service Institution’ by Royal Charter of Incorporation in 1860, retained until the present day. Today it is known as the Royal United Services Institute for Defence and Security Studies.

The Building

Prior to moving into its current [ purpose-built headquarters] in 1895, RUSI began its existence in Whitehall Court, then moved to a house in what was then known as Middle Scotland Yard in 1832. Queen Victoria granted RUSI the use of the Banqueting House. It finally moved to its current location, next-door to the Banqueting House in 1895.


RUSI is a British institution, but operates with an international perspective. It promotes the study and discussion of developments in military doctrine, defence management and defence procurement. In recent years RUSI has broadened its remit to include all issues of defence and security, including terrorism and the ideologies which foster it and the challenges which we face from other man-made or man-assisted threats and from natural disasters.

RUSI has a [ membership] consisting of military officers, diplomats and the wider policy community. RUSI currently also has twenty-eight [ Associate Fellows] and eleven Fellows FRUSI.

RUSI members and the wider defence and security community has access to has three main activities:


RUSI's [ research] activities fall under three categories: [ Military Sciences]

[ International Security Studies]

[ Homeland Security & Resilience]


RUSI [ organises] a number of lectures, seminars and conferences for its membership and the wider defence and international security community. Its location in Whitehall means that is able to attract leading statesmen and policymakers.


RUSI [ publishes] a number of periodicals and books. Its flagship publication is the RUSI Journal. It also publishes the RUSI Newsbrief and RUSI Defence Systems.


President: HRH The Duke of Kent,Vice-Presidents:Vice Admiral Sir Jeremy Blackham KCB BA,Lt Gen The Hon Sir Thomas Boyd-Carpenter KBE,Sir David Omand GCB,Admiral of the Fleet Sir Julian Oswald GCB,Sir David Veness CBE QPM,His Grace The Duke of Westminster KG OBE TD TL,Mr John Weston CBE,

Elected:Sir Paul Lever KCMG (Chairman),Ms Margaret Aldred, Captain Simon Ancona Royal Navy,The Rt Hon James Arbuthnot MP,Ms Jane Attwood,Mr Richard Melville Ballerand FRUSI,Mr Tim Banfield,Sir Roger Bone KCMG,Lieutenant General Sir Robert Fry KCB CBE, Dr Mike Goodfellow,Mr Nik Gowing, General Sir Timothy Granville-Chapman KCB CBE ADC (Vice-Chairman),Mr John Howe CB OBE,Mr Robert Keen,Ms Mariot Leslie CMG,Vice Admiral Rory McLean CB OBE,Ms Cornelia Meyer,Dr Greg Mills,Mr Geoff North,Mr Richard Norton-Taylor Mr Stephen Phipson,Lieutenant General Jonathon Riley CB DSO PhD MA Late RWF,Professor Geoffrey Till FKC,

Ex-officios:Mr Jonathan Evans,Lieutenant General Andrew Figgures CBE,Lieutenant General Andrew Graham CBE,Rear Admiral Ronald H Henderson, Jr (American Defense Attaché),Brigadier General Franz-Josef Nolte (German Defence Attaché),Rear Admiral Yann Tanquiy (French Naval and Defence Attaché),Professor Mark Welland FRS FREng.

RUSI Analysis

RUSI experts are often [ called upon] to provide analysis and commentary on the leading defence and security issues of the day. In addition, [] hosts a repository of articles and commentary on the defence and security issues of the day. Content is drawn from its publications and briefings from its researchers.

External links

* [ Royal United Services Institute for Defence and Security Studies]

ee also

*List of UK think tanks


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