Announcement: Strategic Narratives panels at the 2010 ISA Annual Convention

A strategic narrative is a narrative forged by a state with the express purpose of influencing the foreign policy behavior of other actors. This communicative work is particularly critical in periods of transition in the international system when challengers to hegemonic powers emerge, such as the challenge of China, India and the EU to the existing US-led world order. Over the past 12 months a research programme on strategic narratives has been initiated by the NPCU, Centre for European Politics at Royal Holloway, and Centre for Global Political Economy at the University of Sussex. This programme has been recognised by the International Studies Association, which will host two panels on the theme on Saturday 20 February 2010 at the ISA Annual Convention in New Orleans. The first panel presents recent studies of the strategic narrative work undertaken by major powers (and some non-state actors). The second brings together leading figures with experience of policy, media and academia for a roundtable discussion on the ‘battle for influence’ in international affairs.


Research Panel: Identity, Persuasion and Strategic Narratives (10.30am)


  • Laura Roselle: Communicating Strategic Narratives: Constructing the Post-Cold War International System
  • Alister Miskimmon: The European Security Strategy as a Strategic Narrative: Projecting European Union influence?
  • Karin Fierke: The Body as Strategic Narrative: Self Sacrifice and Power in International Relations
  • Cristina Archetti: Constructing the Al-Qaida Narrative: Media and Communication in the Radicalization process
  • Ben O'Loughlin: Media Diplomacy, Non-Linear Narratives and Digital Emergence
  • Discussant: Andreas Antoniades, University of Sussex


Roundtable: The Battle for Influence: Great Powers in the 21st Century (3.45pm)


  • Parag Khanna, New America Foundation
  • Philip Seib, University of Southern California
  • Jeffrey Legro, University of Virginia
  • Laura Roselle, Elon University
  • Fabio Petito, University of Sussex
  • Ben O'Loughlin, NPCU
  • Alister Miskimmon, Royal Holloway, University of London


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