The European Union (EU) is experiencing a range of mounting challenges that threaten prospects for long-term peace and stability inside Europe and on its borders. These pressures call into question the EU’s ability to make use of its various tools of foreign and security policy in as effective way as possible in years to come. This is particularly the case for economic sanctions, or “restrictive measures”, which have been an increasingly valuable and favoured instrument for the EU over recent years. This project seeks to contribute original interview-based research, which will add to the growing literature on EU sanctions, and also aid the EU’s ability to respond effectively to mounting challenges in the crucial years to come. The research centres on EU autonomous sanctions used outside of the UNSC framework, with a principal focus on the EU’s sanctions on Russia, put in place in March 2014 in response to Russia’s violation of Ukraine’s territorial integrity.