The Role of Think Tanks in the Age of Misinformation

IIEA26th May 20212min
Marking the IIEA’s 30th Anniversary, the IIEA gathers heads of leading European think tanks to discuss the spread of misinformation on the era of so-called ‘fake news’ and the challenges this poses for policymakers, thinktanks and civil society.


In the era of so-called “fake news”, the rapid spread of misinformation throughout the COVID-19 pandemic has posed persistent challenges to decision-makers, policymakers and experts. Yet fake news was on the rise long before the ‘Covid Infodemic’: from the Brexit campaign to the threat posed by Russian-sponsored disinformation in Central and Eastern Europe, to the accusations of a fraudulent US Presidential Election, misinformation is spreading with greater and greater ease in Western democracies. To discuss these issues, and the important role think tanks can play in providing independent analysis to policymakers and the public, the IIEA gathers heads of leading European research institutes.

About the Speakers:

Dr Rosa Balfour is Director of Carnegie Europe. Her fields of expertise include European politics, institutions, and foreign and security policy. Prior to joining Carnegie Europe, she was a Senior Fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the United States and she also served as Director of the Europe in the World programme at the European Policy Centre in Brussels. Her current research focuses on the relationship between domestic politics and Europe’s global role.

Dr Robin Niblett is Director and Chief Executive of Chatham House, a position he has held since January 2007. He is currently co-Chair of the World Economic Forum’s Global Futures Council on Geopolitics and he previously served as Chair of the Experts Group for the 2014 NATO Summit and Chair of the British Academy’s Steering Committee of Languages for Security Project (2013). Before joining Chatham House, from 2001 to 2006, Robin was the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).

Dr Nathalie Tocci is Director of the Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI) and Honorary Professor at the University of Tübingen. She is Special Advisor to EU High Representative and Vice President of the Commission Josep Borrell. She previously served as Special Advisor to HRVP Federica Mogherini where she wrote the European Global Strategy and worked on its implementation. Previously, she held research positions at the Centre for European Policy Studies, Brussels, the Transatlantic Academy, Washington and the Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies, Florence.