The overarching question imparting urgency to this exploration is: Can U.S.-Russian contention in cyberspace cause the two nuclear superpowers to stumble into war? In considering this question we were constantly reminded of recent comments by a prominent U.S. arms control expert: At least as dangerous as the risk of an actual cyberattack, he observed, is cyber operations’ “blurring of the line between peace and war.” Or, as Nye wrote, “in the cyber realm, the difference between a weapon and a non-weapon may come down to a single line of code, or simply the intent of a computer program’s user.”
Areas of Interest
- Strategic Studies
- Conflict and Development
- The UN and International Security
- Comparative Civil Wars
- Cold War History
Educational and Professional Background
Mats Berdal, BSc (London), DPhil (Oxford), is Professor of Security and Development in the Department of War Studies at King's College London. From 2000 to 2003 he was Director of Studies at the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) in London. Mats Berdal is a Visiting Professor at the National Defence and Command College, Oslo.
Current Research and Consultancy Projects
Mats Berdal is in the process of completing The UN and the Search for International Order, a book that covers the immediate post-Cold War period and focuses in particular on the UN's involvement in the mitigation, containment and resolution of civil wars. He is also working on an Adelphi Paper for the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) examining international efforts, from Bosnia to Iraq, to consolidate peace in the aftermath of war. Recent writings have also focused on developments at the UN since the start of the war in Iraq in 2003 and the political economy of armed conflict. Other research interests include Philip Windsor's contribution to the study of International Relations, in particular his ideas on strategy and war. Berdal recently edited a collection of Windsor's essays, book reviews and articles (Studies in International Relations: Essays by Philip Windsor) which was published by Sussex Academic Press in December 2002 (with a paperback published in April 2004).