Niels Nagelhus Schia

Senior Research Fellow, Head of the Research group on security and defense, Head of NUPI's Research Centere on New Technology

Niels Nagelhus Schia is a senior research fellow, head of NUPI's Research group on security and defense, and co-chair of NUPI's Center on digitalization and cyber security studies.

He is a former fellow of the NSSR (New School for Social Research) and holds a PhD degree in social anthropology from the University of Oslo.

With a focus on the role of cybersecurity and cybersecurity governance in international relations Schia tracks new developments in policy and research, and provide academic studies, expert analysis and strategic policy recommendations. His research focus combines anthropology and international relations theory with theories of cyber security.  His current projects are concerned with norms and state behavior in cyber space, development assistance and capacity building, societal vulnerabilities, sovereignty and cyberspace, global governance and cyberspace. In the research project GAIA (funded by the Research Council of Norway's IKTPLUSS initiative) Schia explores links between digital value chains, national autonomy and international politics. This is a four-year cooperation between SimulaMet, NUPI and several other institutions and universities. Read his most recent article The Cyber Frontier and Digital Pitfalls in the Global South published in Third World Quarterly (2018).
Schia has worked on numerous topics within international organizations, global governance, peacebuilding and statebuilding over the previous years. He has acted as an adviser to governments and international organizations on issues pertaining to capacity building, institution building and global governance. He has participated in international discussions and working groups in the United Nations and regularly participates at international conferences. He has long experience with developing and finalizing research projects financed by governments and research councils. A cross cutting concern in these research projects has been the exploration of global connections to more localized and national contexts. This is also a concern in his book Franchised States and the Bureaucracy of Peace (Palgrave Macmillian, 2018) and in his chapter Horseshoe and Catwalk: Power, Complexity and Consensus-Making in the United Nations Security Council in the book Palaces of Hope: The Anthropology of Global Organizations (Cambridge University Press, 2017).
Schia has published in scientific journals such as Third World Quarterly, European Journal of International Relations, International Peacekeeping, Journal of International Relations and Development, and Political and Legal Anthropology.
His current research focuses on cyber security, cyber capacity building in developing countries and emerging economies, internet governance and collaboration between states and non-state actors.

He is a former Fulbright Scholar and from January 2017 he is a co-editor of the leading Scandinavian-language International Relations-journal Internasjonal Politikk.


2015 PhD, Social Antropology, University of Oslo

2004 Cand.polit., Social anthropology, University of Oslo

Work Experience

2022- Head of NUPI's Research group on security and defence

2017- Co-editor of the leading Scandinavian-language International Relations-journal Internasjonal Politikk.

2015- Head, NUPI's Cyber Security Centre. 2010 Advisor, Civil Affairs, Policy Best Practices Services (PBPS), UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations, New York HQ.

2009 Visiting scholar at The New School for Social Research, New York, Leiv Eiriksson mobility programme (The Research Council of Norway) and Fulbright Scholar.

2003- Research Assistant / Research Fellow / Senior Research Fellow, NUPI.


2012-2016 Board member Fulbright Alumni Association of Norway.

2013-2016 Head of Scientific Committee for Fulbright annual research award.

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