Human security and the responsibility to protect

This course examines two important concepts within the contemporary international security landscape: Human Security and the Responsibility to Protect (R2P).

While Human Security seeks to shift the focus of security from the state to
the individual, R2P can be described as a norm, which is based on the notion that state sovereignty is not a privilege, but a responsibility. Together, these concepts challenge the way we understand security, the state, and the rules of the
international system. Therefore they are of great interest for both practical and academic reasons.

This course does not engage in advocacy, but instead seeks to create a deeper understanding of these concepts – where they come from, how they have been developed, and how they relate to theories of strategy, the state, and international politics. Human Security and R2P will thus be critically examined from an academic as well as a practical standpoint by asking questions about their utility for the academic study of international affairs; for policy-making at the national and international levels; and for strategic and operational planning and implementation.


Prof. Robert Egnell is the Vice-Chancellor of the Swedish Defence University and a Professor in Leadership. He is also a senior fellow with the Security Studies Program at Georgetown University. Previous positions include Head of the Department of Security, Strategy and Leadership at the Swedish Defence University, Visiting Professor and Director of Teaching in the Security Studies
Program at Georgetown University, and senior researcher at the Swedish Defence Research
Institute (FOI). Prof. Egnell is also a captain in the Swedish Army reserves, with operational
experience from the first Swedish battalion in Kosovo, 1999-2000.

Robert Egnell

Högskoleledning, Rektor, Professor

Robert.Egnell@fhs.se +46 8-55342768
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