International Trends in Border Politics

International Trends in Border Politics

What are the dominant or emerging trends in border politics today? How has the pandemic shaped the way we view borders? Are open border policies a thing of the past?

From the ‘borderless world’ ideal in the end of the 1990’s, more border walls are being built today than at any other time in modern history. But globalisation presents a number of processes which cannot be understood or managed within individual states. The climate crisis, international migration, pandemic diseases and capital flows all challenge a state’s ability to maintain control over its territory and require international decision-making and cooperation.

In this webinar, UI researcher Johanna Pettersson was joined by the awarded researcher Matthew Longo for an in-depth conversation on the current developments in international border politics and prospects for the future. Using different examples from current debated border issues, such as the Mexico-US border, combined with theoretical and philosophical aspects, the conversation spurred discussion and reflection of borders as more than just lines on a map.



Dr. Johanna Pettersson, Associate research fellow at the UI Programme for Global Politics and Security
Dr. Pettersson’s research focuses on the role of borders for the construction of sovereignty. She received her doctorate in political science from Uppsala University in 2018 with the dissertation What’s in a Line? Making Sovereignty through Border Policy. In 2020 she will begin a post-doctoral research project about sovereignty and the internal borders of the European Union. Earlier this year she published the UI Paper “Higher Fences and Wider Nets? Global Trends in Bordering Policies” in which she dissects the function and meaning of modern state borders and highlights the recent shifts in global bordering policies.

Dr. Matthew Longo, Assistant professor of Political Science at Leiden University
Dr. Longo’s research focuses on the relationship between borders, state sovereignty and security. His dissertation from Yale University was awarded the 2016 Leo Strauss Award for the best dissertation in the field of Political Philosophy, granted by the American Political Science Association (APSA). In 2017, his book The Politics of Borders: Sovereignty, Security, and the Citizen after 9/11  was published with Oxford University Press.


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