The special issue “European Diplomatic Practices: Contemporary Challenges and Innovative Approaches” edited by Federica Bicchi and Niklas Bremberg has just come out with the journal European Security. The intent of the special issue is to showcase how practice theory can provide new insights on European foreign and security policy. In my own contribution, I draw on practice theory to explore how the question of European agency can be reconceptualized. I draw on the examples of the EU’s role in counter-piracy. Here is the abstract:
The practice turn provides new avenues for core questions of international relations and European Studies. This article draws on a practice theoretical account to shed new light on the constitution of agency in global politics. An understanding of agency as achievement that requires significant practical work and the participation in international fields of practice is developed. Drawing on the case of the field of counter-piracy practice and the European Union’s (EU’s) work to counter piracy off the coast of Somalia, it is shown how the EU achieved the position as a core actor in the field. A detailed discussion of the EU’s work in interrupting and knowing piracy, in building capacity, and in governing piracy is provided.