Fresh Start or False Dawn?

Thursday, December 16, 2021, 11:00 am - 12:00 pm EST // 17:00 - 18:00 CET

Prospects for U.S.-German Relations in the Post-Merkel Era

The pieces in U.S.-German relations are in flux. The Biden administration has been clear that it wishes to rejuvenate America’s relationship to its European partners, while the incoming “traffic light” coalition in Germany creates an opening for change in German foreign and security policy. At the same time, expectations of a significant boost to U.S.-German relations can easily be overstated. Structural differences in outlook between the United States and Germany on major transatlantic issues will likely persist, and both governments will be preoccupied with difficult domestic challenges. What are the prospects, under these circumstances, for U.S.-German alignment on pressing international problems, such as relations with China, European security, or climate change? The seminar will discuss initial findings from a research project that seeks to map areas of foreign and security policy convergence and divergence between the Biden administration and the next German government. The discussion builds on more than twenty interviews with foreign and security policy experts in Washington, DC.

Join DAAD/AICGS Research Fellow Kai Oppermann presents his research on the early expectations for transatlantic relations in the Biden and Scholz administrations.


Kai Oppermann is Professor of International Politics at the Chemnitz University of Technology. He has previously held positions at the University of Sussex, King’s College London, and the University of Cologne. His research centers on the domestic sources of European integration and foreign policy with a focus on transatlantic relations and British and German foreign policy. Dr. Oppermann won a Marie Curie Fellowship for a research project on EU referendums and worked as a specialist advisor to the House of Lords External Affairs Sub-Committee in the UK. His work has been published in international peer-reviewed journals such as European Journal of International RelationsWest European PoliticsForeign Policy AnalysisJournal of European Public Policy, and British Journal of Politics and International Relations. Dr. Oppermann is a co-editor at German Politics and an associate editor of the Oxford Encyclopedia of Foreign Policy Analysis (2018). He regularly gives media interviews on topics related to German and British foreign policy and transatlantic relations.


This event is supported by the DAAD with funds from the Federal Foreign Office.