Research

My main research areas are at the intersection of European security, global governance and security cooperation among international organisations with a special interest in the EU-NATO relationship. In my research, I focus on interactions between member states and between the institutions themselves. I am also interested in the EU’s external relations with the African Union (AU), Organisation for Security and Coooperation (OSCE) in Europe and key states such as Russia and the United States. For the conduct of my research I have received funding from the University of Kent, ANTERO Jean Monnet Network and the Germany Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). 

 


‘Towards the Construction of a (New) European Security Architecture? Perceptions and Perspectives by Germany, Russia and the US’ (proposed title)

This research project is funded by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD).

In this project, I work on the conceptualisation of a (new) European security architecture through which I seek to examine the relations and interactions between the Germany, Russia and the US as well as relevant security organisations such as the EU, NATO and OSCE in the construction of the contemporary European security order. With the changing international liberal world order, new tensions between Russia and the Euro-Atlantic community, three countries receive particular attention – Germany, Russia and the US – due to their roles in world politics, in the respective security organisations in Europe and their historical and political ties. Theoretically, I apply assumptions from regime complexity, regional security complex theory (RSCT) neoliberalism and network theory to conceptualise and theorise the relations and interactions between international security organisations and key member states while also taking into account external (f)actors. 

 


‘NATO 2030 and Beyond: Challenges and Opportunities for the Next Generation’

Book project with Jason Blessing and Katherine Kjellström Elgin at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). This project is co-funded by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD).

In this book project, we approach the question ‘To what extent can NATO maximise its relevance relevant for the future?’ by taking a forward-looking perspective. This edited volume seeks to illuminate the challenges and opportunities facing NATO in 2030 and beyond. It will be a future-oriented collection of chapters that provides fresh insights into the pressing issues and debates surrounding the alliance. To this end, we seek to bring together a new generation of scholars to dialogue with more established voices across the United States and Europe on NATO. This book will serve as a key reference and valuable roadmap for American and European policymakers as they consider they alliance’s next stage of transformation.

 


‘How Member States Matter for the EU-NATO Interorganisational Relationship: A Typology’ (PhD dissertation)

For the conduct of my doctoral studies I received funding from the University of Kent 50th Anniversary Scholarship and the ANTERO Jean Monnet Network.

Cooperation in foreign, security and defence affairs has become an increasingly crucial topic with the growing number of crises and conflicts that the Euro-Atlantic community faces. Since their origins, the EU and NATO have gone through different phases of interactions, and recent events in their security environment on the Eastern and Southern borders have demanded greater collaboration. Their interactions and cooperation have experienced multiple challenges internally as well as externally. This dissertation analyses the EU-NATO interorganisational relationship and takes a special focus on the role of member states. States pursue different goals and objectives, and thus takes a different position in international organisations as well as in interorganisational relationships. This research investigates the interactions between organisations in overlapping policy areas, and more specifically in the field of security and defence, by establishing the theoretical framework of interorganisational interaction. It argues that both member states and international organisations play decisive roles in shaping the preferences, designs and institutional settings of interorganisational relations, and seek to pursue their own interests through multiple channels and forums. Based on the findings and insights from the theoretical framework two typologies are developed: a typology of interorganisational interaction and a typology of member states’ positions in interorganisational interaction. The typology of interorganisational interaction is based on a set of indicators that include the network density of international organisations, functional overlap, the level of formalisation, frequency, intensity, and membership overlap. The typology of member states consists of advocates, blockers, balancers and neutrals of interorganisational interaction. Both typologies help to explain and understand the diverging behaviours, strategies and positions of member states. The theoretical framework with the typology of member states in interorganisational relations is applied to the analysis of the role of member states in the relationship between the EU and NATO. The empirical part analyses each type by considering and categorising all member states to illustrate their different contributions, interactions and approaches to shaping EU-NATO cooperation. This research takes a mixed methods approach by collecting data through the conduct of interviews with representatives from the EU, NATO and selected member states, the analysis of key national security and defence documents from member states, and the use of descriptive statistics which compile member states’ contributions to EU-led and NATO-led military operations as well as their cooperation on the institutional and operational levels. With the development of the theoretical framework including the indicators of interorganisational interaction and the typology of member states, and the findings from the empirical analysis, this inquiry enhances the scholarship of interorganisational relations. It adds a new angle by analysing the perspective of member states and further contributes to the empirical examination of the EU-NATO relationship in security and defence affairs.

 

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