C&C piece on the measurement of national security fields (out now)

The emergence of a transnational field of security in Europe constitutes a stimulating new observation to security studies research. However, the operationalization of such research is challenging. Notably, time-consuming data collection and data analysis is required to fully comprehend the complex characteristics and resources of a security field’s manifold actors. Drawing on a research project funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF), this article offers a substantive analysis of the contemporary dynamics of the Swiss national security field, and it presents some practical ‘tools’ for researchers interested in producing empirical studies of transnational fields of security in Europe. To do so, the article mobilises multiple correspondence analysis, principal component analysis, network analysis and other statistical or statistics-based methods to assess the europeanisation of the Swiss security field.


Davidshofer, Stephan; Tawfik, Amal; Hagmann, Jonas (2016). Analyse du champ de la sécurité en Suisse : vers une hypertrophie de la sécurité intérieure et autres réflexions méthodologiques. Cultures & Conflits 102 (2016/2): 59-93. PDF

Pro Helvetia/Swiss Arts Council mandate: How to secure a country

Since winter 2015, I am counselling a Pro Helvetia Förderprojekt in visual arts. The project is developed by photographer Salvatore Vitale, and seeks to capture practices of contemporary national security management in Switzerland. Under the title How to secure a country, he visualises standard operating procedures of national danger management broadly defined – the control of borders, people, goods, urban spaces, mobility and so on. By focusing on manuals for professional security production, and their practical implementation in the field, he lends attention to – and displays in new ways – the difficult and bureaucratic rationalisation of the fluid thing termed ‘(in-)security’.


For more information and early results of this project, visit Salvatore Vitale’s website or read his interview for American Suburb X.