Who's who


Below you will find links to descriptions of Allied Heads of State and Government, Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Defence, and the Permanent Representatives of nations to NATO.

Summit Guide


NATO’s 25th summit meeting

At the Chicago Summit, 20-21 May 2012, NATO will drive forward key principles and policies that will shape the Alliance of 2020 and beyond. It will deliver on decisions taken at the Lisbon Summit in November 2010, turning them into concrete programmes and initiatives.

Allies will commit to maintain the necessary capabilities and to developing cooperation and dialogue  with partners. And at a time of austerity, it will be a question of striking the right balance between fulfilling NATO’s shared responsibilities and balancing national budgets.

The summit will principally focus on three main themes:

NATO is an essential source of stability. In order to maintain its capacity to safeguard the security and values of its members, it needs to continue developing the means to do so and building partnerships beyond the North Atlantic region.

I. Operational priorities

Afghanistan – through transition and beyond

NATO is committed to supporting Afghanistan beyond 2014, when the gradual transition of security responsibility from ISAF troops to Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) will be fully implemented and the ISAF mission will come to a close. Until then, and as transition implementation progresses,  the ISAF mission is evolving from a combat to a support role. In 2013, when the last tranche of transition is expected to be announced, the ANSF will be in the lead for combat operations across the country. ISAF will increasingly shift to a training and advising  role, but continue to support combat operations alongside Afghan forces, as necessary.

At Chicago, leaders will map out how NATO intends to complete the transition process by end-2014. They will also agree on how NATO will provide training, advice and assistance to the ANSF, and will demonstrate their commitment to sustaining the ANSF beyond 2014, as part of the Afghan government’s and the broader international community’s efforts.

Other operational priorities

NATO is also engaged in other operations and missions, all of which are explained below.

II. Developing capabilities under budgetary constraints

At a time of austerity, NATO is also seeking to ensure better value for money for its security. With the financial crisis in Europe and beyond, severe deficit reduction measures in the United States and increased pressure on defence budgets, NATO’s shared experience provides added-value in helping countries work together. The Alliance pools capabilities, connects forces and manages multinational programmes and missions. At the Summit in Chicago, Allies will show how the Alliance will deal with today’s economic challenges while preparing for the security challenges of tomorrow.

“Smart defence”

In Chicago, Allies will support new multinational projects that will allow the Alliance to provide more security for its citizens in an age of financial austerity.  The  goal is an Alliance that is fit for the next decade and beyond .The way to get there is confirming a renewed culture of cooperation – “smart defence”.

Projects in the spirit of Smart Defence will comprise a package of multinational projects to address critical capability shortfalls. They  will  include programmes such  as as  missile defence,, Alliance Ground Surveillance (AGS) and Joint Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance as well as projects covering areas such as pooling maritime patrol aircraft and remote-controlled robots for clearing roadside bombs   

Seeking to optimise assets

Being able to put together complex joint operations at short notice is a priority for the Alliance. To do this at a time of crisis, NATO is seeking to reform its structures and processes to get a better return on investment. This means introducing change now in order to have flexible, deployable forces, and the right mix of capabilities at hand in ten years’ time.

III. Greater flexibility with partners

Chicago will be an opportunity for Allies to deepen existing relations and broaden its networks of partnerships. The summit will therefore give a new impetus to partnerships, highlighting their integral role in NATO’s peace support and crisis-management operations and overall political agenda.  

 Heads of state and government will also focus on engaging other organisations in addressing global challenges.

Press & Media


Press & Media

Below you will find contact information for NATO’s Press & Media service, as well as basic information for getting around Chicago.



The meetings will take place at the McCormick Place, 2301 South Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, Illinois, 60616-1460.

NATO Media Coordinator’s Office

Email  natosummitmedia@hq.nato.int
Telephone +32 2/707 5038
+32 2/707 1431
+32 2/707 1465
Telephone From the US +1 (757) 747-3235
+1 (757) 747-3227

US Media Coordinator’s Office

Email summitmedia@state.gov


Email content@natochannel.tv
Telephone +32 2/707 9140

Media Advisories

Media Background


Hotel information

US Hosts have identified The Hyatt Regency Chicago (151 East Wacker Drive, Chicago, IL 60601) as a recommended media hotel. US Hosts have negotiated favorable rates on behalf of the media. Rates will begin at USD 171 (plus applicable taxes), and will not exceed USD 299. Lower rates are available on a first come first serve basis. Reservations there can be made on https://resweb.passkey.com/go/NATOPress.

Accreditation and dedicated transport will be organised from this recommended media hotel for accredited media.

Transportation Information

Chicago’s public transportation system is run by the Chicago Transit Authority. Getting around Chicago is easy with this helpful resource Maps you can fing below. Much more information about Chicago’s public transportation system, including notifications about route delays and a trip planner, can be found at http://www.transitchicago.com/mobile/.

Basic Chicago Map

CTA System Map (Bus and train routes)

The CTA System Map shows both CTA Bus and Rail lines, as well as connecting services provided by other transit agencies in Chicago and surrounding communities.
CTA System Map Brochure (.pdf) (.txt) (Español .pdf)


RTA Regional System Map (CTA, Metra, and Pace)

The Regional Transportation Authority map shows city and suburban transit provided by CTA, Metra, and Pace.

RTA System Map Brochure (.pdf)

Basic Chicago Map

Night Owl Map (Overnight service)

This map and brochure describes Owl Service (overnight service) for riders who need to travel during overnight hours..
Night Owl Brochure (.pdf) (.txt)