Externally financed projects – University of Copenhagen

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Externally financed projects

Ongoing IR research projects with external funding.



What NATO Knows: Military and Political Expertise between Technoscience and Practical Experience

Trine Villumsen Berling
The project asks which types of expertise are prevalent at the NATO Defence College. The central aim is to investigate practically generated expertise as opposed to abstract, theoretical expertise and how these are mobilised in the teaching and research at the College. The project uses participant observation, postmodern interviews, analyses of teaching curricula and textual analysis of key documents and research papers. The research will result in two peer reviewed articles in relevant international journals and two op-eds in Danish newspapers.Til toppen

Greenland as a Case of Postcolonialism

Ulrik Pram Gad
While the Arctic seems to gradually open up in regards to commerce, minerals extraction and possible international conflict, Greenland continues to be decolonizing only in slow-motion. By analysing how Greenland is different as a case of post-colonialism, this project will contribute both to our understanding of Greenland's approach to new possibilities and to the development of postcolonial theory. The project analyses the interplay between arctic materiality, varying versions of the Danish imperial project as well as Greenlandic resistance, by zooming in on shifting linkages between space, time and agency.
The post.doc. project is financed by Carlsbergfondet 2015-2016. Publications in 2017-18.
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Images and International Security

Lene Hansen (with Rebecca Adler-Nissen and Iver B. Neumann) 
The research project ‘Images and International Security’ examines the role images play in world politics. Images circulate rapidly, reaching audiences across the globe. Images can help create conflicts, they document atrocities, but they also show how former enemies can be reunited. Images “speak” security, but governments, diplomats, journalists and activists compete to define what exactly images “say”. ‘Images and International Security’ is devoted to building new theory and empirical insights on why and how images influence international relations. The project is funded by The Danish Council for Independent Research (Grant ID: DFF – 1327 – 00056B).
For further information see website Til toppen

Diplomacy in Praxis  

Martin Marcussen
The purpose is to come to a better understanding of how the diplomatic role is being perceived and enacted in real life in different circumstances; to explore the different kinds of diplomatic tools that are being applied in everyday life at the diplomatic missions; and to evaluate whether Danish and Nordic diplomatic practices lead to the desired results.
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Security Communication: Between Secrets and Speech

Karen Lund Petersen (with Myriam Dunn Cavelty, Vibeke Schou Tjalve and Rens van Munster)
The project observes how the mitigation of current threats requires an active participation of citizens and private businesses and therefore also a clear approach to knowledge sharing and intelligence communication. The project claims that ‘security communication’ is a particular bureaucratic practice that must increasingly balance the aim of information sharing against the need for secrecy. By comparing the organization of security communication in Danish, Swiss, British and U.S. intelligence agencies, the study aims to show how and why communication capabilities and thus opportunities for citizen involvement vary.
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National Security Strategies as New Western Security Management

Henrik Ø. Breitenbauch
During the last two decades, a new institutionalized approach to prioritizing and communicating security policy has spread across the West. National Security Strategies and their concomitant model for processing security policy is an important trend in Western security management. This project maps, examines and discusses this new phenomenon by establishing its institutional character on both sides of the Atlantic including through interviews with decision-makers and supported by Michel Foucault’s notion of governmentalities. The project is supported by the Gerda Henkel Stiftung and the Carlsberg Foundation.
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A BRIC’s Use of Military Force: Danish Network on Brazil’s Emerging Approach to Domestic Stabilisation

Henrik Ø. Breitenbauch
Of the four BRIC countries, Brazil stands out as the most promising partner for Denmark, Europe and the West in dealing with stabilization issues in the global south. Beyond its European heritage and democratic regime, Brazilian armed forces are increasingly engaged at home and abroad in stabilisation efforts in favelas, in cooperation with Amazon Indian tribes as part of counter-drug operations as well as through the UN in MINUSTAH, MONUSCO and beyond, applying lessons learned at home and abroad in both contexts. This project builds a Danish-Brazilian network on Brazil’s emerging approach to domestic stabilisation and is funded by the Danish Research Council’s International.
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Ben Rosamond (et al)
EuroChallenge is a major research interdisciplinary project that addresses the place of Europe in the context of a rapidly and radically changing global order. It involves the Faculties of Social Science, Law and Humanities and is organized into three work packages. Work package I - 'The European Market Space and the New Global Economy: Constructions, Paradigms and Policies' focuses on the ways in which policy elites in Europe, conceptualise the new global order, the extent to which neoliberalism sits at the heart of European economic policy calculus and how, if at all supranational economic policy designs in the new global order are moving beyond the well-established EU regulatory mode of governance. Work package II - 'The European Legal-Politico Space in a New Global Order? The Global Challenges to European Markets, Human Rights and Constitutionalized Democracy' - asks searching questions about the viability of Europe’s role as a producer of ‘universals’ in the realms of market regulation, human rights norms and models of constitutional democracy. It examines the degree to which developing societies are adopting or neglecting European models of politico-legal space. Work package III - 'Complex Diversity: the Social and Cultural Interpretations of Changing European and Global Order'- deals with the challenges to European socio-political space of the changing global order. It examines both societal responses to the global crisis and changing citizens’ allegiances and loyalties in light of the macroeconomic and politico-legal shifts considered by the other WPs.
For further details see website
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Copenhagen Middle East Research Programme

Birthe Hansen, Bertel Heurlin, Somdeep Sen and Salem Ben Souhail Dandan
The Copenhagen Middle East Research Programme (COMER) is based on a cooperation between the Department of Political Science at the University of Copenhagen and the Institute for Strategy at the Royal Danish Defence College. COMER aims at producing research into contemporary Middle Eastern security politics and societal development.