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New project: EU border security and gender

We are happy to announce the approval of our research project “Risky Borders. Gender and Race in Border Security” by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF)! Saskia Stachowitsch, Julia Sachseder and their team will conduct this research over the next four years at the Department of Political Science at the University of Vienna and at the Austrian Institute for International Affairs (oiip).


The project examines the role of the European Border and Coast Guard Agency (Frontex) in the reproduction and transformation of gender and racial inequalities and insecurities. In several case studies on border security operations in the Mediterranean Sea, particular focus will be placed on risk analysis in this process.

Estimated project start: fall 2020, total funding: € 490,000.
More about the project

Talk: Militarization Needs Patriarchy – The Brewing Of a Toxic Mix

Speaker: Cynthia Enloe (Clark University)
Chair: Saskia Stachowitsch (IPW, University of Vienna| oiip)

Thursday, 10 October 2019, 5:30 p.m.
Austrian Institute for International Affairs (oiip)
Berggasse 7, 1090 Vienna

Please register at


Over thirty years ago, Cynthia Enloe has changed the discipline of International Relations forever by posing a simple question: Where are the women? Since then, she has continuously alerted us to the ways women and gender matter in and for international politics and global security. Introducing feminist approaches to the field, Enloe has particularly shown how militarizing processes in every guise depend on narratives, policies and pressures to manipulate both women and men, femininities and masculinities. Her first public talk in Vienna is dedicated to the subject of militarization which is on the rise again, locally and regionally, and is connected to a strong anti-feminist backlash against gender equality and emancipation. Efforts to sustain hierarchical gender relations and norms (as well as resistances to them) are more than mere political ‘side shows’, but an integral part of militarism, nationalism, and authoritarianism which challenge democracies in Europe and beyond.

New Article: The Gendered and Racialized Politics of Risk Analysis. The Case of Frontex

Saskia Stachowitsch und Julia Sachseder
Published online in Critical Studies on Security,  July 31,

RCSS_COVER_7-01.inddThis article develops a feminist postcolonial approach to risk analysis as an increasingly central security practice in the EU’s emerging border management and security regime. For this purpose, we theorize risk analysis as a sense-making practice embedded within colonial power relations. As such, risk analysis problematizes migrants and migration in gendered and racialized ways that make them amenable to border management and other, potentially violent security practices, such as detentions, returns, surveillance, and Search and Rescue. In an exemplary frame analysis of the European Border and Coast Guard Agency’s (Frontex) risk analysis report 2016, we show how conceptualizations of risks and solutions by this key actor are informed by gendered and racialized framings of 1) chaos and violence, 2) exploitation of the EU economic and welfare system, and 3) humanitarianism towards ‘vulnerable’ migrants. With this study, we seek to strengthen feminist and postcolonial interventions into critical security studies on knowledge, power, and expertise. By conceptualizing risk analysis as political, this article pushes critical security theory beyond understandings of security as socially constructed and towards systematically unpacking the meanings of (in)security as implicated in the reproduction of gendered and racialized power relations.

IPW Lecture: Europe Has to Get Its Act Together

Speaker: Eugen Freund (Member of the European Parliament)
Chair: Barbara Prainsack (IPW, University of Vienna) and Saskia Stachowitsch (IPW, University of Vienna | oiip)

Monday, 20 May 2019, 5:30 p.m.
Austrian Institute for International Affairs (oiip)
Berggasse 7, 1090 Vienna

Presentation in German. Please register at An event within the IPW Lectures, an international lecture series of the Department for Political Science, University of Vienna, event in cooperation with the oiip – Austrian Institute for International Affairs.

Lecture: The Domestic Determinants of US Foreign Policy, or Why Europeans Don’t Understand Americans (But Think They Do)

An event within the Heinz Gärtner – Lectures.

Tuesday, 14 May 2019, 6 p.m.
Industriellenvereinigung, Urbansaal, first floor
Schwarzenbergplatz 4, 1030 Vienna

Foreign policy begins at home. How could Americans elect both Donald Trump and Barack Obama? What are the domestic drivers of US foreign policy, and how are they changing? What does these changes mean for Europe?

Welcome Address and Introduction:
Univ.-Prof. Dr. Saskia Stachowitsch
Scientific Director oiip

Key Note Speaker:
Prof. Dr. Dan Hamilton
Austrian Marshall Plan Foundation Professor
Founding Director of the Center for Transatlantic Relations at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), Johns Hopkins University

Dr. Caspar Einem
President oiip


To register please click here:
For further information on the event please click on the following link.