Addressing Maritime Insecurity (AMARIS)


Start date: 1 March, 2020 End date: 30 November, 2022 Project type: Research projects in countries with targeted development cooperation (earlier Window 2) Project code: 19-M07-KU Countries: Ghana Thematic areas: Conflict, peace and security, State building, governance and civil society, Transport and infrastructure, Lead institution: University of Copenhagen (UCPH), Denmark Partner institutions: Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC), Ghana Centre for Maritime Law and Security (CEMLAWS), Ghana University of Ghana (UG), Ghana Project website: go to website (the site might be inactive) Project coordinator: Christian Bueger Total grant: 4,999,986 DKK

Project summary

High levels of maritime insecurity significantly affect a country’s prospects for trade, sustainable development, environmental protection, as well as the welfare of coastal populations. Piracy, for instance, threatens the transport industry and undermines revenues that can be created from exports or tourism. Illegal fishing not only implies environmental degradation, but also a challenge for food security. How can maritime insecurities be reduced? What law enforcement and crime prevention strategies are the most promising? How can the international community support and build capacity in countries that suffer from maritime insecurities?

This project addresses these questions by researching the case of Ghana: How is the country affected by criminal activities? What national responses are developed? How is Ghana supported through capacity building? The results from this project will lead to new knowledge in three areas: 1) on the conditions that enable criminal activities at sea and how they are interrelated, 2) on the challenges of national maritime security governance, and 3) on capacity building as a form of international intervention. Through a close research collaboration between leading maritime security researchers based in Denmark and Ghana, the project generates new knowledge that will enable to better contain and prevent maritime crime in Ghana, the Gulf of Guinea, and elsewhere.


First Year Report

The project is now well in its phase 2: Data Collection. We have very successfully completed phase 1 which was centered on literature review, refinement of the research strategy and the discussion of our key theoretical framework. This has led to detailed research strategies for each of the work packages as well as a series of conceptual papers and literature overviews. These draft products were important guidelines for the empirical work conducted in phase 2, which is underway, and once data collection is completed will form the basis for writing the main article outputs.
Each workpackage has made substantial achievements in collecting data in the form of very detailed mapping reports (of 30-60 pages length). The work packages have now moved to a phase in which empirical work focuses on particular details and aspects such as the role of security strategies, or the interlinkages between blue crimes. We expect the data collection to be completed, with only minor (Covid-linked) delays.

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