Public Lectures

PUBLIC LECTURES

delivered by our PostDoc fellows

Securitizing Energy: From Geopolitics to Energy Democracy

Izabela Surwillo 

WHEN: Tuesday November 21, 2017, 16:00-17:30

WHERE: Room no. 305, MUP Strašnice building, Dubečská 900/10, Prague 10

Free entry, no registration required.

Abstract: Energy security emerged as one of the ‘new’ security issues in the post-Cold War era. Due to its ‘total’ character it impacts all sectors of human activity as well as other security areas – political, societal and environmental included. However, the vast majority of energy security analysis tends to focus on the local and global market forces and narrowly defined economic indicators for operationalizing energy security. The mainstream research is also primarily conducted from a limited methodological perspective that often relies on economic modeling, but rarely includes qualitative data that would give more consideration to the multiplicity of local actors, agendas and perspectives. Yet, the contextual analysis of the energy security phenomenon shows that the realist focus on the geopolitics of gas/oil supply and the ‘zero-sum’ game of pipeline politics are only a part of the story. Similarly to the analysis of climate security, the security dynamics of the contemporary energy sector defies the logic of exception as the dominant and universal logic of security. Namely, not only the logic of risk, war and subsistence shape local energy security agendas, but the emerging logic of emancipation increasingly plays a role in different national settings. Characterized by the gradual democratization of energy systems, individuals as the referent objects of security, the rhetoric of social empowerment/liberation and reflexive security practice – the energy security logic of emancipation marks yet another mutation of the meaning and practice of energy security and has important policy consequences for the domestic contexts. The presentation will look at this phenomenon in greater detail at the example of Germany, Poland and Ukraine.

Post-Cold War Military Innovation in Regional Powers

Alexandr Burilkov 

WHEN: Tuesday December 5, 2017, 16:00-17:30

WHERE: Room no. 305, MUP Strašnice building, Dubečská 900/10, Prague 10

Free entry, no registration required.

Abstract: In the past 20 years, a number of regional powers have emerged to challenge the status quo established by the fall of the Soviet Union.  From a military perspective, of particular interest are the irredentist regional powers such as China, Russia, or Iran, which are dissatisfied with regional or even global power structures and security arrangements.  This lecture examines military innovation – focusing on navies and maritime forces – amongst these regional powers, meaning tactics, strategies, and technologies that do not emulate the standard practice of established militaries, especially those of NATO, and therefore could lead to increased complexity in already-tense security climates.  The lecture draws on the historical tradition of naval theory, as well as neoclassical realism, to argue that these recent developments mirror other pushes by irredentist powers to compensate through innovation, as was the case in the Soviet Union.

Quantitative methods in international relations

Alexandr Burilkov 

WHEN: Tuesday December 12, 2017, 12:20-13:50

WHERE: Room no. 307, MUP Strašnice building, Dubečská 900/10, Prague 10

Free entry, no registration required.