Germany has become a geo-economic power since its unification in 1990. Its foreign policy agenda has been shaped by its economic interests and the role of its export sector. Nevertheless, Russian actions in Ukraine and elsewhere in Europe combined with the accession of the Trump Administration in the United States and the rise of China have resulted in a transition in the foreign policy paradigm toward Germany as a shaping power and more of a geopolitical actor which has to balance its economic interests with the new strategic challenges of a newly unstable Europe.
Dr. Stephen F. Szabo is Senior Fellow at the American Institute for Contemporary German Studies and a Professorial Lecturer in European Studies at sais, Johns Hopkins University. He served as the Executive Director of the Transatlantic Academy and as Interim Dean and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at sais. He has been a Fellow with the Alexander von Humboldt Stiftung, the Wilson Center, and the American Academy in Berlin. His publications include, The Diplomacy of German Unification (New York, 1992), Parting Ways: The Crisis in the German-American Relationship (Washington, 2004), and Germany, Russia and the Rise of Geo-Economics (London, 2015).