Hybrid threats and Warfare

Challenges related to hybrid wars and hybrid threats are today something that is high up on both the Swedish and the international agenda. However, despite the attention, there is today a lack of a comprehensive approach on how such “new” wars and threats should be handled. While studies do exist addressing specific issues, a comprehensive approach to how hybrid wars and threats are to be handled are still lacking. This is particularly so when it comes to experience sharing between states. I aim to, with the Swedish Defence University as my base, contribute to the development of such a comprehensive approach.

This project aims to bridge between scholars and practitioners, as this is a field where extensive insights exist among insiders. By building a bridge, we will enhance both our knowledge about and ability to handle today’s hybrid challenges.

The project will develop networks and collaborations across disciplinary boundaries among researchers within and outside Sweden, as well as with relevant practitioners. The project is part of the Swedish Defence University’s Hybrid Warfare Research Group.

I have here co-organised a conference in 2017 and I have a forthcoming antology with I.B. Tauris titled Hybrid Threats- and Warfare: Security and Asymmetric Conflict in the Grey Zone. I am here currently focusing on the role of the armed forces to counter hybrid threats and warfare to include in-depth case studies of the Swedish context and to bring in experiences and lessons from other countries.

Recent publications:

I just published a new article in Baltic Defence College’s Journal on Baltic Security – HYBRID WARFARE AND HYBRID THREATS TODAY AND TOMORROW: TOWARDS AN ANALYTICAL FRAMEWORK.

This article first traces the origin of hybrid warfare and the label game surrounding the concept, asking whether it is merely old wine in a new bottle, and if so, whether it is still a useful concept. It is found that while being old wine in new bottles, it is still a good wine well worth drinking. While there is not much new in the concept itself, it is a useful tool to think about past wars, today’s wars and the wars of the future. Thereafter, this paper analyses how hybrid warfare and hybrid threats are to be understood in the context of peace, conflict and war. It is shown how hybrid warfare and threats fit into our traditional understanding of conflict dynamics.

Full text (OPEN ACCESS): https://doi.org/10.2478/jobs-2019-0002

(2018). Hybrid Threats and Asymmetric Warfare : What to do? Conference proceedings from the conference “Hybrid Threats and Asymmetric Warfare: What to do?”, Stockholm 14-15 November, 2017.

(2015) “Global shadow war: a conceptual analysis”Dynamics of Asymmetric Conflict, Vol. 8, Iss. 3, 2015 (with Markus Lyckman)


Warfare | Security | Strategy | Hybrid Warfare | Hybrid Threats | Land Warfare & Tactics | China | East Asia | South China Sea | Belt & Road | North Korea | Conflict Management |