The Royal Institute for International Affairs - also known as Chatham House - is a British think tank. It was founded in 1920 and is a lynchpin of the British Foreign Policy establishment. The Chatham House Rule requires confidentiality of all meeting participants and prohibits attribution of comments. The current (2010) chairman of the council of Chatham House is the former CIA operative Dr. DeAnne Julius and the Director (until the end of 2006) was Victor Bulmer-Thomas .
- 1 History
- 2 Nuclear Power: Attacking Government Advisors As Being 25 Years Out of Date
- 3 Role
- 4 Chatham House Rule
- 5 People
- 6 A Document by Chatham House
- 7 Related Documents
- 8 A document sourced from Chatham House
- 9 See Also
- 10 References
The Royal Institute of International Affairs was founded in 1920 as the Institute of International Affairs following a meeting at the previous year's Paris Peace Conference. The first chairman was Robert Cecil, 1st Viscount Cecil of Chelwood, while Lionel Curtis served as honorary secretary. Arnold J. Toynbee later became director. The Council on Foreign Relations, its American sister institute, was established the following year. Chatham House, The RIIA's well-known headquarters at 10 St James's Square, London, was gifted to the institute in 1923, having previously been the home of three British Prime Ministers: Pitt the Elder, Edward Stanley and William Gladstone.
The name of the building grew to be so synonymous with the Institute that it was officially rebranded as "Chatham House" in September 2004. However, "Royal Institute of International Affairs" continues to be used interchangeably with "Chatham House".
The Chatham House building is located just a few metres from the former Libyan embassy building, and many long term staff members witnessed the 1984 Libyan Embassy Siege.
On July 18, 2005, Chatham House released a paper on Security, Terrorism and the UK which stated that "[a] key problem for the UK in preventing terrorism in Britain is the government’s position as ‘pillion passenger’ to the United States' war on terror." 
Nuclear Power: Attacking Government Advisors As Being 25 Years Out of Date
In March 2005, the UK Government advisors, the Sustainable Development Commission, (SDC) published its report into nuclear energy as part of the Government's energy review. The report was seen as a significant step-back for the nuclear industry as the SDC concluded that "nuclear power is not the answer to tackling climate change or security of supply". According to the SDC its report "draws together the most comprehensive evidence base available, to find that there is no justification for bringing forward a new nuclear power programme at present".
Along with Rebecca Willis, a Vice-Chair of the SDC, Malcolm Grimstone from the RIIA was interviewed on BBC Radio 4's You and Yours Programme on the day the report was released. Grimstone said the SDC's report was like "moving back 25 years in time. There has been no recognition of how far nuclear technology has come in that time". He also said that the "only unsubsidised source of energy at the moment is nuclear power". 
Chatham House conducts original research into a variety of regional and global issues, and describes itself as follows.
... a melting pot that brings together people and organisations with an interest in international affairs. We provide an independent forum in which academia, business, diplomats, the media, NGOs, politicians, policy makers and researchers can interact in an open and impartial environment.
The widespread recognition of the Chatham House Rule as a byword for free and frank debate is a reflection of our unique and non-aligned perspective.
Chatham House is routinely used as a source of information for media organisations seeking background or experts upon matters involving major international issues.
Chatham House reflects a pro-establishment view of the world (due to donations from large corporations, governments and other organisations), but is nevertheless membership-based and anyone may join. The relatively high annual membership fee (approx £200) tends to put access to Chatham House out of reach of many ordinary people.
Chatham House Rule
- Full article: Chatham House Rule
- Full article: Chatham House Rule
Chatham House is the origin of the confidentiality rule known as the Chatham House Rule, which provides that members attending a seminar may discuss the results of the seminar in the outside world, but may not discuss who attended or what they said. The Chatham House Rule evolved to facilitate frank and honest discussion on controversial or unpopular issues by speakers who may not have otherwise had the appropriate forum to speak freely. However, most Chatham House meetings are held 'on the record', and not under the Chatham House Rule.
The rule currently reads as follows:
"When a meeting, or part thereof, is held under the Chatham House Rule, participants are free to use the information received, but neither the identity nor the affiliation of the speaker(s), nor that of any other participant, may be revealed". 
The Council 2005-2006
- DeAnne Julius CBE (Chairman) E
- Brian Crowe (Deputy Chairman) E
- Adrian Lamb OBE (Hon. Treasurer) ex-officio E,F,I
- Tony Bladry MP
- Michael Clarke
- Tony Colman
- Lyse Doucet
- Andrew Fraser
- Claudia Hamill
- Mustapha Karkouti
- Raj Loomba
- Denic MacShane MP
- Michael Moore MP
- Elizabeth Padmore
- Alpesh Patel
- Stuart Popham
- Divya Seshamani
- Jonathan Steele
- Robin Niblett – Director
- Paul Curtin – Finance Director & Secretary to the Trustees:
List of Other Staff
- Director: Professor Victor Bulmer-Thomas
- Head of External Communications: Keith Burnet
- Co-ordinator: Alis Martin
- Head, International Economics Programme: Dr. Brigitte Granville
- Research Fellow: Dr. Sushanta Mallick
- Head, Sustainable Development Programme: Duncan Brack
- Senior Research Fellow: Malaika Culverwell
- Senior Research Fellow: Valerie Marcel
- Research Fellow: Jacqueline Karas
- Programme Manager: Kate Vrolijk
- Head, European Programme: Dr. Julie Smith
- Head, Security Issues Programme: Chris Wright, seconded from the Ministry of Defence
- Associate Fellow: Olivia Bosch
- Head, Asia Programme: Dr. Stephen Green
- Programme Manager: Alis Martin
- Elizabeth Wilmshurst; Head of International Law
- Head, Middle East Programme: Dr. Rosemary Hollis
- Associate Fellow: Dr. Mai Yamani
- Senior Research Fellow: Yoshiji Nogami
- Programme Co-ordinator: Robert Lowe
- Head, Latin American Projects: Michael Mecham
- Head, Russia & Eurasia Programme: Dr. Roy Allison
- Research Fellow: Clelia Rontoyanni
- Programme Co-ordinator: James Nixey
- Head Africa Programme and British Angola Forum: Alex Vines
- Programme Co-ordinator: Tom Cargill
- Research Assistant: Manuel Paulo
- Yossi Mekelberg - Middle East Specialist
- Associate Fellow: Dr. Shane Brighton
It has an American wing, the Chatham House Foundation.
A Document by Chatham House
|Title||Document type||Publication date||Subject(s)||Description|
|File:Security Terrorism and the UK.pdf||briefing paper||1 July 2005||"Terrorism"|
|A quintessentially UK Establishment view on Security and Terrorism in the UK.|
|Document:Jeremy Corbyn’s Chatham House speech||Article||12 May 2017||The Spectator||"Weapons supplied to Saudi Arabia, when the evidence of grave breaches of humanitarian law in Yemen is overwhelming, must be halted immediately."|
|Document:The Secret Society That Rules The World||Article||7 November 2018||Bas Spliet||In his 1999 campaign autobiography, President George W. Bush mentioned his membership in passing: "My senior year I joined Skull and Bones, a secret society, so secret I can’t say anything more."|
A document sourced from Chatham House
|File:Mendez-Chatham House lecture.pdf||report||Torture||10 September 2012||Juan Méndez|
- About Chatham House
- Security, Terrorism and the UK
- Nuclear Power Won't Fix It Sustainable Development Commission March 2006
- BBC Yoy and Yours Interview with Malcolm Grimstone
- Chatham House Rule