Christian Bueger

Conference on Future Challenges of Maritime Security

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Maritime Security is a complex, interconnected challenge and addressing it requires close cooperation and coordination among different agencies, including the navies. On April 1st and 2nd I participated in a conference organized by the Naval Staff Strategy Unit and the Global Directions program of Merton College Oxford which aimed at discussing how to rise to these challenges. The conference drew together a range of participants from think tanks, universities, NGO’s, IO’s and navies to ask which strategies can be developed for navies in a maritime security environment. In the conference different regional theaters, including the Gulf, the Mediterranean, or the Gulf of Guinea were discussed as well as the broad range of maritime security issues, stretching from illegal migration and fisheries crime to piracy and climate change were debated. In my own contribution I drew on a recent article published in African Security to ask how a maritime strategy can be build around the task of the facilitation of maritime security communities. Building maritime security communities is a viable end for maritime security strategy. Two core challenges however arise, firstly, the problem of overlap and regime complexity, and, secondly, how to ensure ownership and and organic growth of security communities.