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Expertise & Research

Knowledge

Wisdom

Virtue

Focus Areas

Energy Geopolitics

Energy geopolitics (politics, security, diplomacy) is a fascinating field of international relations, politics, and history. Three factors increase the importance of energy policy research. First, we live in a time when the energy world is changing, with renewable energy and decarbonization leading the way. Second, the world is facing dramatic climate change that affects energy infrastructure. Third, geopolitics, geo-economics, and energy trade are shaping international relations through more assertive energy diplomacy.

Energy Policy

Energy is never an isolated issue. It is closely intertwined with international trade, national interests, security concerns, and geopolitics. In Northeast Asia, regional tensions and historical disputes have made it difficult to achieve effective bilateral and multilateral cooperation on energy issues. However, developing a comprehensive energy strategy is essential for governments and institutions to ensure sustainable energy security in the region.

Energy Security

Energy security affects many disciplines, from terrorism to climate change. Energy security is the “uninterrupted physical availability of energy products at affordable prices for all users,” according to the European Commission. Energy security usually includes assessments of resilience because there are so many risks in the world, such as cyber threats and interruptions in the energy supply.

Energy Diplomacy

Energy diplomacy is an intricate field that involves complex interactions between countries, regions, and international organizations. As a researcher, I am particularly interested in the energy dynamics of Northeast Asia, the Middle East, and Russia. These regions are crucial players in the global energy market, and their energy policies and practices have significant implications for the energy security and economic well-being of countries worldwide.

In Northeast Asia, regional tensions and historical issues have impeded bilateral and multilateral cooperation, complicating the development of a comprehensive energy strategy. However, the region is also home to some of the world’s most advanced energy technologies and innovations, making it an important area for studying the future of sustainable energy. Similarly, the Middle East is known for its abundant oil and gas reserves and has been a significant contributor to the world’s energy supply for decades. However, the region’s political instability and conflicts have created challenges for energy diplomacy and underscored the need for a more sustainable and diverse energy mix. Finally, Russia, as one of the world’s major energy producers and exporters, plays a crucial role in shaping the global energy landscape. Understanding Russia’s energy policies and practices is essential for assessing the stability and security of the world’s energy supply.

Russian Foreign Policy

This research requires a high level of conceptualization as it is not just about President Putin and the three known factions – the technocrats, the liberals, and the siloviki. There is much more to Russian foreign policy, including the geopolitics of the Indo-Pacific region, Islamic State militants, Central Asia, China, the Middle East, and the energy security of the European Union.

Despite this complexity, understanding Russian foreign policy is crucial in the current global context. Recent studies of Russian politics and diplomacy have been heavily influenced by the Russia-Ukraine conflict, government scandals, and other pressing issues. However, it is essential to avoid being misled by propaganda and fake news. By approaching Russian foreign policy from a balanced perspective, considering both western and eastern viewpoints, we can gain a deeper understanding of this complex and nuanced field.

International Diplomacy

International diplomacy is the art and practice of conducting negotiations and maintaining relations between nations. It plays a crucial role in addressing global issues, promoting peace, and fostering cooperation on a wide range of political, economic, and social matters. Diplomats, representing their countries, work to resolve conflicts, forge alliances, and advance mutual interests through dialogue, treaties, and diplomatic agreements. It is an essential component of the complex web of international relations that shapes our interconnected world.

International Security

International terrorism refers to acts of violence, sabotage, or intimidation carried out by extremist groups with an international agenda. These groups often operate across national borders, targeting civilians and governments to advance their ideological, political, or religious objectives. Combating international terrorism is a critical focus of international cooperation and diplomacy, with nations working together to address the root causes, prevent attacks, and promote global security.

Cybersecurity is a major concern for many countries, yet it remains an underinvested area of study. Cyberattacks on critical infrastructures such as energy, finance, logistics, trade, and space can have devastating consequences. Cybercriminals and hackers operate under a veil of anonymity, making them difficult to track down. The dark web provides unlimited opportunities to engage in criminal activities with minimal risk of being caught.

Terrorist organizations are also using cyberspace for their activities. They use it for fundraising, recruitment, propaganda, and even attacks. The ease of access to the internet and the anonymity it provides has made it easier for these organizations to reach out to potential supporters, plan and coordinate their activities, and execute their attacks. As such, cybersecurity has become an essential aspect of national security in the digital age.

Research Projects

Ongoing

  • Philosophy of the European Diplomacy During Conflicts and Energy Crises (Norwegian Funds, Prof. Iver Neumann – the Fridtjof Nansen Institute in Oslo, Prof. Mats Braun – Metropolitan University Prague)
  • Energy Security of Japan: Security and Geopolitical Implications of Japanese Hydrogen Strategy (individual project)
  • The pitfalls of geopolitics of Japan and South Korea towards the Sino-Russian energy cooperation in Northeast Asia (individual project)
  • The Role of Sino–Russian Cooperation in the Northeast Asian Energy Regime (dissertation topic)
  • Radicalisation in Europe and returning fighters of the Islamic State (individual project)