SafeSeas facilitates analysis in maritime security and ocean governance for policymakers and private and public organizations. SafeSeas is a non-profit association registered in Denmark.

The goal of SafeSeas is 1) to facilitate state of the art, high quality research and analysis on maritime security and ocean governance; 2) to raise awareness for ocean issues, 3) to provide evidence for strategies and policies, 4) to identify and share best and promising practices across countries and regions and 5) to contribute to education and training related to maritime security and the oceans.

We regularly advise governments, international organizations and other clients, provide expertise in the media and act as speakers, trainers, and facilitators. We also publish commentaries, working papers, and regularly organize public and stakeholder events. We strive to facilitate the dialogue between academics and policymakers and other stake holders. 


Christian Bueger, Director

Christian is a director and co-founder of SafeSeas.

He is one of the leading scholars on maritime security and a Professor at the University of Copenhagen. His research has appeared in Al Jazeera, BBC, Guardian, Wall Street Journal, and Der Spiegel. His over 180 publications on maritime security, maritime infrastructures, ocean governance and international relations are highly cited.

Beyond academia, Christian has worked as an advisor for governments and international organizations, including the European Union, Indian Ocean Commission, International Maritime Organization and the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.

Timothy Edmunds, Director

Tim is a director and co-founder of SafeSeas.

He is professor of international security at the University of Bristol and a leading expert on transnational crime at sea (blue crimes), maritime security sector reform (MSSR), capacity building, and maritime security in the EU and the UK.

Tim has led on several international research and advisory projects including in the Indian Ocean region and the UK and worked with governments, including the United Kingdom, the United States, Somalia, and the European Union.

Jan Stockbruegger, Director

Jan is a director of SafeSeas with a focus on shipping risks.

Jan is a research fellow at the University of Copenhagen and has extensive experience in research on shipping risks, including on shadow fleets, sanction evasion, greenhouse gas emissions, private security and piracy.

He regularly speaks at international symposia, works as a trainer, and has a background in development assistance. He holds a PhD from Brown University.


SafeSeas works with teams tailored to research projects and client needs, drawing on experts from our global network of affiliates.

Dr Barry Ryan
// Dr. Barry Ryan, Keele University, UK

Barry Ryan is a senior lecturer in International Relations at Keele University. For the past number of years his research has gradually evolved from its initial empirical focus on policing and liberal internationalism towards a more critical stance on the relationship between police, war and global security. His current research is concerned with spatial strategies of security and the maritime environment and the implications for IR theory of a critical turn towards the politics of sea. A full bio can be found here.

// Dr Ehud Eiran, University of Haifa, Israel

Dr. Ehud (Udi) Eiran a senior lecturer (US Associate Professor) of International Relations, University of Haifa, Israel (on leave 2020-2021), and a visiting scholar, Department of Political Science, Stanford University (2019-2021).  He was one of the co-founders of the Haifa Research Center for Maritime Policy and  Strategy, and headed the University’ Center for National Security. He previously held research and teaching appointments at Harvard Law School, Harvard Kennedy School and MIT’s Department of Political Science.      

// Associate Professor Douglas Guilfoyle, UNSW Canberra, Australia

Associate Professor Douglas Guilfoyle joined UNSW Canberra in 2018. His particular areas of specialism include maritime law-enforcement, the law of naval warfare, international courts and tribunals, and the history of international law. He is the author of Shipping Interdiction and the Law of the Sea (CUP 2009) and International Criminal Law (OUP 2016); and is the editor of Modern Piracy: Legal Challenges and Responses (Elgar 2013). He has published numerous papers on maritime security and law enforcement, and in particular Somali piracy. His research work is informed by his consultancy to various government and international organisations.

// Dr. Elizabeth Nyman, Texas A&M University at Galveston, USA

Dr. Elizabeth Nyman is an academic and writer who specializes in international maritime issues. Currently she is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at Texas A&M University at Galveston.Dr. Nyman’s research focuses on international maritime conflict, piracy, and environmental issues, and has been published in a variety of academic venues. She is particularly interested in oceanic resources, such as fish or offshore oil and gas, and how those impact state desires to control ocean spaces.

// Dr. Christian Wirth, GIGA Hamburg, Germany

Dr. Christian Wirth is Research Fellow at the German Institute for Global and Area Studies, Hamburg, and an Adjunct Research Fellow at the Griffith Asia Institute, Brisbane. His research focuses social and political change in Northeast Asia, and maritime on politics in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. He is author of Danger, Development and Legitimacy in East Asian Maritime Politics: Securing the Seas securing the State (Routledge Asia’s Transformations, 2017) and also published in International Relations, Political Geography, Geopolitics, and The Pacific Review. 

// Professor Francois Vreÿ, Stellenbosch University, South Africa

Professor Vreÿ is the research coordinator for the Security Institute for Governance and Leadership in Africa, Stellenbosch University. He is a former lecturer in the Military Strategy Department.His primary research focus is on irregular warfare and the rise of the maritime security threat landscape off Africa. Prof. Vreÿ also lecturers at the University of Namibia, Military Colleges such as the South African National Defence College and the Royal Danish Defence College (RDDC).

// Dr. Collin Koh Swee Lean, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Singapore

Collin Koh is Research Fellow at the Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies which is a constituent unit of the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, based in Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. He has research interests on naval affairs in the Indo-Pacific, focusing on Southeast Asia. Collin has published several op-eds, policy- and academic journal articles as well as chapters for edited volumes covering his research areas. He has also taught at Singapore Armed Forces professional military education and training courses.

// Dr. Joshua Tallis, Center for Naval Analyses, USA

Dr. Joshua Tallis is a political-military analyst studying maritime security, ocean governance, polar affairs, and the role of seapower in US strategy. He serves as a research scientist at the Center for Naval Analyses and an adjunct professor at The George Washington University. His field research experience includes embedding as the command analyst with the Truman aircraft carrier strike group on the US Navy’s first Arctic carrier deployment since the end of the Cold War. He is the author of the book, The War for Muddy Waters: Pirates, Terrorists, Traffickers, and Maritime Insecurity.

// CF (R) Marianne Péron-Doise, Institut de Recherche Stratégique de l’Ecole Militaire, France

Marianne Peron-Doise is the director of the “International Maritime Security” program at the Institute for Strategic Research at the Military School (IRSEM), France and will soon be directing the “From Maritime Security to Sea Studies” course at de sciences-po Paris. A marine officer by trade, she has held several different positions at the Ministry for Defense, including the head of the office for the Asia Pacific at the Delegation of Strategic Affaires. She was a political consultant with the NATO Maritime Command and is an occasional consultant for the EU project CRIMARIO. Her research focuses on the topics of maritime regionalization and multilateralism in the oceanic landscape.

Dr. Carolin Liss, Vesalius College, Brussels, Belgium

Carolin (Line) Liss is Assistant Professor of international affairs at Vesalius College, Brussels, and Associate Fellow at the Peace Research Institute Frankfurt. She received her Ph.D. in Politics and Asian Studies from Murdoch University, Perth, Australia. Previously, she worked at Griffith University, Brisbane, and Murdoch University and has been a visiting associate at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, Singapore. Her research focuses on maritime security, the privatization of security and non-traditional security threats (including piracy, kidnappings, terrorism and transnational criminal activities).

// Dr. Anna Sergi, University of Essex

Anna holds a PhD in Sociology (2014), with specialisation in Criminology, from the University of Essex, where she currently is a Senior Lecturer.  She specialises in organised crime and comparative criminal justice and, more recently, drug importations, policing and border security against organised crime through seaports. During her research she has worked with the Australian Federal Police, Royal Canadian Mounted Police, FBI, Italian Antimafia, UK National Crime Agency and Europol. Anna is the recipient of the 2017 Award Italy Made Me by the Italian Embassy in London, the 2018 Economic and Social Research Council Research Impact Award for her research on the Calabrian mafia in Australia and the 2018 Italian Chamber of Commerce award “Talented Young Italians” for the Research & Innovation category.


// Letizia Paoli, KU Leuven

Letizia Paoli is professor of criminology and chair of the Department of Criminal Law and Criminology at the KU Leuven Faculty of Law and Criminology and a Life Member at Clare Hall, University of Cambridge. Her research agenda focuses on organized, corporate and sports crime and the related harms. Her latest books are Assessing the Harms of Crime: A New Framework for Criminal Policy, which she coauthored with Victoria A. Greenfield (Oxford University Press, 2022) and The Nexus Between Organized Crime and Terrorism: Types, Developmental Conditions and Policies, co-edited with Cyrille Fijnaut and Jan Wouters (Elgar, 2022).

// Prof. Richard Barnes, University of Lincoln, UK

Richard Barnes is Professor of International Law at the University of Lincoln. He authored Property Rights and Natural Resources (Hart, 2009) and co-edited The law of the Sea. UNCLOS as a Living Treaty (BIICL, 2016) and Law of the Sea: Progress and Prospects (Oxford, 2006). He specializes in law of the sea, including natural resource and security issues. In recent years, he has advised a range of organisations, including the WWF, the European Parliament and Defra, and appeared on numerous occasions before Parliamentary committees to provide expert evidence on fisheries law.

//Dr. Sofia Galani, University of Bristol, UK

Sofia is a Lecturer in Law at the University of Bristol. Her research interests lie in maritime security; the law of the sea; terrorism studies; and human rights. She is the co-editor (with Professor Sir Malcolm Evans) of Maritime Security and the Law of the Sea: Help or Hindrance? (EE, 2020). Sofia was one of the principal contributors to the UNODC Maritime Crime: A Manual for Criminal Justice Practitioners (2nd ed, 2019) and has led sessions at the UNODC: Maritime Law Expert Conferences.

// Dr Aviad Rubin, University of Haifa, Israel

Aviad Rubin is a faculty member in the Department of Government and Political Theory at the University of Haifa’s School of Political Science. Dr. Rubin earned a law degree from Tel Aviv University and A PhD in political science from McGill University. Dr. Rubin is a reserve naval officer and is the founding and current director of the academic program of the Israeli Naval Academy at University of Haifa. He founded, together with Ehud Eiran, the Haifa Research Center for Maritime Policy and Strategy. Dr. Rubin is interested in maritime politics in the East Mediterranean Basin, and in questions of sovereignty and identity in the seas

// Professor Geoffrey Till, US Naval War College

Geoffrey Till holds the Dudley W. Knox Chair for Naval History and Strategy at the Naval War College. The author of over 200 articles and book chapters, as well as 29 books, his “Understanding Victory: Naval Operations from Trafalgar to the Falklands” appeared in 2014 and the fourth revised edition of “Seapower: A Guide for the 21st Century” in 2018. He has contributed to a number of maritime research projects for the UK Royal Navy, the US Department of Defence and the US Navy Department and for the Navy of the Republic of Singapore. Geoffrey Till’s main interests are in maritime security and naval development.

// Professor Kimberley Peters, University of Oldenburg, Germany

Kimberley Peters is a Professor of Marine Governance at the Helmholtz Institute for Functional Marine Biodiversity (HIFMB). She is a human geographer interested in thinking spatially about the political, legal, economic and environmental relations we have with seas and oceans. She is particularly interested in the governance of marine and maritime worlds and has explored this through the studies of managing illicit uses of the ocean through radio piracy; state employment of ships and the sea to (re)move incarcerated subjects; and most recently the development of ‘invisible infrastructure’ to control the mobilities of ships in existing and emerging global transit spaces (from the English Channel to the Bering Strait).

// Dr. Ian Storey, ISEAS Yusof Ishak Institute, Singapore

Dr. Ian Storey is a Senior Fellow at the ISEAS Yusof Ishak Institute (formerly the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies) in Singapore. He specializes in Asian security issues, with a focus on Southeast Asia. Ian is the editor of ISEAS’ flagship academic journal Contemporary Southeast Asia. His research interests include Southeast Asia’s relations with the major powers and maritime security, especially the South China Sea dispute on which he is a leading authority. His latest book is The South China Sea: Navigating Strategic and Diplomatic Tensions (co-edited, ISEAS, 2016).

// Dr. Ursula Daxecker, University of Amsterdam

Dr. Daxecker is an associate professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Amsterdam where she is a member of the research group Political Economy and Transnational Governance. Her research interests focus on elections and conflict and the political economy of piracy and crime. Her work has been funded by the U.S. Department of Defense Minerva Initiative, the European Research Council, European Commission’s Marie Curie actions, and the Dutch Science Foundation. Her book “Pirate Lands: Governance and Maritime Piracy” (co-authored with Brandon Prins) will be published with Oxford University Press in 2021.

// Dr. Jessica Larsen, Danish Institute for International Studies, Denmark

Dr. Jessica Larsen is an anthropologist and holds a position as researcher at the Danish Institute for International Studies in Copenhagen. She works on issues related to maritime security and port governance.  In particular, she examines the relation between regional and international actors and the forms of authority that are produced around the maritime space. Her research is based on fieldwork and empirical data collected in the regions she studies. In addition to her research, Dr. Larsen contributes with policy analysis for the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Defence on her areas of expertise.

// Timothy Walker, Institute for Security Studies Africa, South Africa

Timothy Walker is Maritime Project Leader and Senior Researcher in the Pretoria office. He joined the ISS in 2011 as an intern in the Peace Operations and Peacebuilding Programme. His areas of interest include maritime security, piracy, the blue economy, China-Africa relations, international relations theory and human security. Tim has a Master’s degree in political and international studies from Rhodes University, South Africa.

// Dr Anthony Bergin, Australian Strategic Policy Institute

Dr Anthony Bergin is a Senior Fellow at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute. He has wide experience in Pacific maritime affairs. He has conducted a number of studies on maritime enforcement issues in the region, including a recent review PNG’s maritime and border security for the Australian and PNG governments. In 2018-2019 Anthony was chief investigator for a major study commissioned by the French and Australian governments on environmental risks in the Indian Ocean and Southern Ocean. Anthony’s most recent study on strengthening maritime security in Indo-Pacific Island states was released by ASPI in December 2019.

// Dr. Amaha Senu, Swansea University, UK

Dr Amaha Senu research interests include maritime security governance, illegalised and policed mobilities at sea, maritime crimes and harms, and transnational crimes in the maritime domain. He completed his PhD as a SIRC-Nippon Foundation Fellow, focusing on maritime stowaways, their treatment and overall governance in shipping. He is currently building on this work through a work-in-progress monograph. He has also written on the humanitarian, security and economic implications of migration at sea for seafarers.

// Bryan Peters, KU Leuven

Bryan is a Ph.D. researcher at the Leuven Institute of Criminology at KU Leuven (Leuven, Belgium). He is working on a research project funded by the Research Foundation Flanders (FWO) and entitled, “Piracy and its control: assessing harms and appraising counterpiracy efforts across regional contexts”. He possesses degrees in the following: MS in criminology (KU Leuven); MA in political science from the University of New Orleans; and a BS in political science from Northeastern University. He worked in the field of law enforcement for much of his career as a criminal investigator, intelligence analyst and administrator. He has published articles on maritime piracy in international criminology journals. His research interests include blue crimes, organized crime, harm reduction and crime prevention. A full bio and a list of publications can be found here.

// Dr. Katja Lindskov Jacobsen, Centre for Military Studies, University of Copenhagen

Dr. Katja Lindskov Jacobsen is a Senior Researcher at the University of Copenhagen in the Department of Political Science’s Centre for Military Studies. Her research centres on various aspects of contemporary interventionism, with a specific focus on Africa, the role of the military, and often with attention to the maritime domain and to the role of new security technology. Her research has been published in International Affairs, Security Dialogue, Cooperation and Conflict, Global and Governance, , among others. She is the author of The politics of humanitarian technology (2015).

// Dr. Kamal-Deen Ali (Captain Navy, Rtd.), CEMLAWS Africa

Dr. Kamal-Deen Ali (Capt Navy Rtd) is the Executive Director of the Centre for Maritime Law and Security Africa. He was previously the Director of Legal Affairs of the Ghana Navy and the Director of Research of the Ghana Armed Forces Command and Staff College. He holds a PhD in Law, Master of Laws and Master of Arts in International Relations. He has extensive academic and professional expertise in Maritime Security and Ocean Governance. He played a key role in the development of National Integrated Maritime Security (NIMS) for Ghana under the Ghana-US Security Governance Initiative. He has published extensively and his book “Maritime Security Cooperation in the Gulf of Guinea: Prospects and Challenges” (Brill/Martinus Nijhoff 2015) is rated as a cutting edge contribution to knowledge and research in maritime studies.

Former Project Staff

Over the years several researchers have contributed to the research projects linked to the SafeSeas network.

Mowlid Aden, Djibouti, (Research Assistant, SafeSeas Capacity Building Project, 2017-2018)

Dr. Humphrey Assamoah, University of Copenhagen (post doc, AMARIS project, 2020-2022)

Dr. Katja Lindskov Jacobsen, University of Copenhagen (Senior researcher and co-investigator, AMARIS project, 2020-2022)

Alvine Marie, Seychelles, Research Assistant (SafeSeas Capacity Building project, 2017-2019

Dr. Rupert Alcock, Bristol University, UK (Research Associate, SafeSeas Capacity Building Project, 2018-2019)

Dr. Scott Edwards, University of Bristol, (post doc, TOCAS project, 2019-2022)

Njoki Mboce, University of Nairobi, Kenya, Research Assistant (SafeSeas Capacity Building project, 2017-2019)

Dr. Robert McCabe, Coventry University, UK, Research Associate (Safeseas Capacity Building project, 2017-2019)

Funding Partners

SafeSeas is a registered voluntary commitment to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 14 (OceanAction14234). It has received funding from a number of academic councils and foundations.

The ‘Transnational Organised Crime at Sea (TOCAS)’ project, 2018-2022, was funded through a grant by the Economic and Social Research Council of the UK as part of the  Partnership for Conflict, Crime and Security Research (PaCCS).

The Analysing Maritime Insecurities in Ghana (AMARIS) is funded by the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and administered by Danida Fellowship Centre of the Danish Development Agency (DANIDA). It runs from 2020-2023. 

From 2016 to 2018 SafeSeas received financial support from the British Academy Sustainable Development Programme [GF16007]  which is part of the UK’s Global Challenges Research Fund initiative to strengthen development through research.

SAFESEAS also received financial support for its activities from Cardiff University, Danish Shipping, University of Copenhagen, University of Bristol, University of Edinburgh, University of Seychelles, University of Sydney, the UNODC’s Global Maritime Crime Programme, and the Security Institute for Governance and Leadership in Africa (SIGLA), University of Stellenbosch.


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