“Elcano Global Presence Index”, Iliana Olive and Manuel Garcia (Elcano, Spain)

Global presence may be addressed by posing the following question: to what extent and in what form are countries ‘out there’, beyond their borders, regardless of whether they are exerting real influence or power? In a sense, global presence can be the basis of power –the platform or asset capable of being transformed into influence or power – if the country extending its presence is able and willing to pursue such ends.

The main objective of this project is joint the efforts put forth by the academic world, some international agencies, and diverse think tanks toward conceptualising globalisation. Therefore, one of the functions of the Elcano Global Presence Index is to analyse the global trends of international presence, including the evolution of multipolarity or bipolarity, the rise or decline of certain countries and regions, and the greater or lesser prominence of soft versus hard presence.

The Index is also a way of assessing the foreign policy of those countries included in the calculation – efforts and means versus results, sector profile of presence, relation between presence and influence, or the distance between objective presence and subjective perception. Consequently, our second aim is to provide a tool for foreign policy-making.

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