Commentaries

Seychelles: Small Country – Big Lessons for Capacity Building
Famed for its idyllic beaches and pleasant tropical climate, and with a population of less than 100,000 permanent residents, Seychelles is perhaps the archetypal small island state. It is also an increasingly important actor in the maritime security of the Western Indian Ocean region. This is in large part due ...
Read More
Africa’s Lomé Charter on maritime security: What are the next steps?
Edwin Egede, Cardiff University The African Charter on Maritime Security, Safety and Development in Africa (the Lomé Charter) is the outcome of the African Union Extraordinary Summit held in Lomé, Togo in October 2016. The idea of the Lomé special session was to build up on the results of previous ...
Read More
Why be a pirate? Understanding motivations for piracy
By Zamzam Tatu, M&C Saatchi World Services, Kenya Following primary research recently conducted at Montagne Posse Prison, Seychelles, little has changed behind the drivers to commit maritime crime. To prevent piracy, a more nuanced approach to understanding the behaviour might be key to a solution. Maritime crime, piracy and Somalia ...
Read More
Does capacity building stand for a new era of international engagement?
Capacity building is the core term through which many global actors describe their international engagement today. While the concept of "capacity building" is anything but new, its arrival in international security discourse is relatively recent. Are we witnessing a major shift in terms of how security actors plan, implement and ...
Read More
What knowledge does capacity building need? The fallacies of epistemic determinism
Inherent in contemporary understandings of capacity building is the idea that if a country possesses the right knowledge and technology then it will be able to handle the challenges associated with the Sustainable Development Goals. In consequence, much emphasis of capacity building work is on transferring technology and knowledge to ...
Read More
The contact group at 20: Challenges for the upcoming plenary
In July 2017 the Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (CGPCS), the main global governance body steering the international campaign to address Somali piracy, will hold its 20th plenary meeting in Mauritius. What issues will the CGPCS have to face and what should we expect from the ...
Read More
Towards Blue Justice: Common Heritage and Common Interest in the Maritime
Peter Sutch, Cardiff University The importance and complexity of our political, economic and environmental relationship to the sea makes the evolution of a contemporary normative vision of the maritime essential. We need Blue Justice for the blue economy and for the increasingly contentious politics of the maritime. In this blog ...
Read More
Thinking Blue Economy and Maritime Security together
The Blue Economy and Maritime security are two of the major frameworks for the contemporary discussion of ocean governance. Although some efforts have been made to define what the blue economy consists of, it is yet another fuzzy term with indeterminate meaning of the ocean governance agenda. The term has ...
Read More
Somali sea hijack is a warning signal
The hijacking of the Aris 13 tanker by Somali pirates last week was a warning signal - it reiterates the importance of maintaining international counter-piracy efforts while also building the capacity of western Indian Ocean states to manage and develop their own maritime security needs. SAFE SEAS published a commentary on ...
Read More
International Relations Must Challenge the Freedom of Security at Sea
We should be embarrassed that so little has been written about the politics of the sea in the field of International Relations (IR). Traditionally limited to the study of relations between states, even the cultural turn that so reinvigorated scholarship in IR a few decades ago has maintained the focus ...
Read More