CHENS is an acronym for the CHiefs of European NavieS. It is an informal, independent and non-political forum whose membership includes the Chief of Navy of each European maritime nation that is either a member of NATO or the EU and has naval armed forces.
CHENS seeks to promote understanding between navies of the member countries, to examine issues of common and mutual interest and to increase awareness of the maritime domain in member countries.
The maritime domain and navies often are 'over the horizon' and out of sight of the general public of member countries. The common experience of the member navies has been that naval and maritime matters tend to be marginalised as a consequence. The promotion of naval points of view within strategic fora and the wider maritime community is therefore considered to be an important function of CHENS. The intent of the papers produced by CHENS is to capture the professional opinion of senior European naval flag officers in a form that is easily disseminated.