International Security,
and the Human Mind.

Hey everybody,

I am scholar of International Relations, with a special interest in international security, language and the human mind. Over the past decade, I have examined when, why and how people, foreign-policy elites, and state leaders, think about security threats and communicate these to others – mostly in an East-Asian context.

The results of this research have been published in the International Relations of the Asia-Pacific, Japanese Journal of Political Science, Risk and East Asia, Foreign Affairs, Journal of Cold War Studies, Australian Journal of International Affairs, and the Journal of Advanced Military Studies.

My current research project, which builds on the empirical investigation of military threat perceptions in Japan over a period of five decades (1950-2000), investigates how leaders construct security threats by relying on core systems of the brain and body that shape perception, the mental structures that encode incoming information, and the distinctive features with which leaders experience the world. You can read about it here.

Funded by the Gerda Henkel Foundation’s Special Programme Security, Society and the State, my next research project examines how three government organisations in East-Asia and in Western Europe (both democracies and non-democracies) evaluate futures strategic trends, threats, and opportunities; how accurate these assessments were, and what was their impact on national-security policy making.

Looking forward, using mixed-methods, and drawing on insights from conceptual semantics (R Jackendoff 2007, 2012, 2019; S Pinker 2007; J Hobbs 2019), neuroscience (LF Barrett 2017), cultural psychology (R Nisbett 2004), and comparative philosophy (Flanagan 2016; Baggini 2018), as well as on the work of IR scholars including Janice G. Stein, Robert Jervis, and Richard Ned Lebow, I am keen to enhance our understanding of threat perception in the context of international relations.

I hope that with better understanding of threat perception, we would be able to reduce instances of unwarranted suspicion, fear and escalation between actors in the international system.


Judean Desert > Tokyo > London


When, why and how people perceive security threats


International Relations, East-Asian Security, Political Psychology