Talk by Prof. Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly on EU – BREXIT – what new borders mean for UK and EU

Thanks to the British Exit (Brexit) the European Union member states are faced with a new and important development in the history of the construction of the European Union. This talk discussed the origins and developments of the BREXIT in the UK and the European Union and its most recent developments; in particular, focusing on border issues in Northern Ireland and the rest of the United Kingdom – what new borders mean for the UK and its relationship with the EU. Speakers: Britta Petersen, Senior Fellow ORF Prof. Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly, University of Victoria (Canada) Alex Pykett, British High Commission, New Delhi

Beyond Boundaries and Borders: South Asian Quest for Peace, Development and Regional Connectivity

Mumbai, India | March 1-2, 2019

South Asia is one of the fastest growing regions that exhibit a potential to emerge as a leading economic centre of the world. Nevertheless, South Asia is riddled with inter and intraregional conflicts embedded in ethnicity, religion, border disputes, and resource politics. These conflicts act as an impediment to peace, development and regional cooperation. In the post-1990’s economic restructuring (liberalisation and privatisation) paved the way for economic growth in the region. Not only India but other South Asian countries Like Nepal and Bangladesh recently earned a reputation of moving swiftly on the path of economic growth. It is a region, nascent in development and growth trajectory and all these are in favour of South Asia. It is expected that in the next couple of years both Nepal and Bangladesh will graduate from the category of the Least Developing Country (LDC) to Developing Country. At the same time, India with its newly acquired economic strength now transited from aid recipient to a donor country. While these are positive indications for a post-colonial region but some issues require serious academic deliberations. The foremost is the question of lack of peace, stability, development and regional integration that is also related to dismal connectivity and lack of cross-border mobility management/governance in South Asia. This is related to the fact that South Asian economies remained open to globalisation, but the same enthusiasm is missing for regional cooperation. Therefore the benefits associated with regional integration are still to be reaped. In short, South Asia is a region of hope and despair and the realisation of potentialities and overcoming the challenges largely depends on the prospect of peace, stability and regional cooperation/ integration.

The conference was organized by the Department of Civics and Politics (University of Mumbai, Mumbai), the Department of International Relations (South Asia University, New Delhi), the Center of Statelessness and Refugee Studies (School of Law, Rights and Constitutional Governance, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai), and Nehru Memorial Museum and Library (New Delhi).


Beyond Boundaries and Borders: South Asian Quest for Peace, Development and Regional Connectivity

Workshop: Borders and Regionalism in South Asia

New Delhi, India | August 25, 2018

South Asia is regarded as one of the least integrated regions of the world. This is despite the fact that the region shares a common history, culture and developmental challenges. Indeed, some hard borders and boundaries act as hurdles for regional integration in South Asia. Contrary to this dominant representation of the region, other realities are quite often ignored. One such important aspect is the socio-cultural and historical ties that exist among the people of the region. Thus, while acknowledging the official borders, we can also see that there are prospects for progress. The commonality between the people opens the possibilities for soft regionalism and in a way, could lead to regional integration in South Asia. This one day workshop invited papers from young scholars to discuss the possibilities of regional integration in South Asia by bridging the existing borders and boundaries. Young faculty members and doctoral students submitted abstracts on themes related to borders and regionalism in South Asia.

Some of the suggested topics were Culture and Borders in South Asia, Border Regions in South Asia, Economic Integration and Borders, South Asian Connectivity, The Mental Borders and Boundaries in South Asia, and Comparative Borders: Examples from Other Regions.

Workshop: Borders and Regionalism in South Asia

Academic Partner – South Asian University

Dhananjay Tripathi

Chairperson & Associate Professor at the Department of International Relations, South Asian University (SAU), New Delhi, India. His research interest includes Regional Integration Process (Europe & South Asia), Border Studies and International Political Economy.

His recent publications are (ed) Re-imagining Border Studies in South Asia (2020- Routledge Publication), Co-edited South Asia: Boundaries Borders and Beyond (2022- Routledge Publication), Afghanistan Post- 2014: Power Configurations and Evolving Trajectories (2016- Routledge Publication) and authored book Development Role of the European Union in South Asia (2011- Vij Publication ).

He has also contributed in edited volumes and published in peer-reviewed journals including – Journal of Borderlands Studies, Economic and Political Weekly, International Studies, Alternatives, Eurasia Border Review, Quarterly of International Sociology, USI Journal, etc. He is also the co-editor of a special issue of the Journal of Borderlands Studies on ‘South Asia: Boundaries, Borders and Beyond’.

He is also the editorial board member of prestigious international journals – Journal of Borderlands Studies (Taylor and Francis), Alternatives: Global, Local, Political (Sage Publication), Estudios Fronterizos (REF) (open access) and BIG Review (University of Victoria).

He is also co-applicant in the successful 21st Century Borders Partnership grant awarded by the Social Science and Humanities Research Council, Canada.

His brief write-ups are published in major national newspapers including – The Hindu, Tribune Daily Excelsior, Telangana Today, Prabhat Khabar and Dainik Bhaskar

Dhananjay Tripathi

Academic Partner – Laval University

Frédéric Lasserre

Frédéric Lasserre holds a Master of Commerce (ESC Lyon, 1990), an MBA (York U., Toronto, 1991), a DEA in Geopolitics (U. Paris VIII, 1992) and a Ph.D. in Geography (U. Saint-Étienne, France, 1996).

He worked as a consultant with the European Observatory of Geopolitics (OEG, Lyon, France) on the political and economic transformations of Central and Eastern Europe after the fall of the Berlin Wall, then as a foreign language instructor in Japan, then as Advisor in International Affairs on Asian Desks at the Quebec Ministry of Trade and Industry; and then with Investissement Québec, the Crown corporation responsible for the promotion of foreign investment in Quebec.

He is Professor since 2001 in the Department of Geography at Laval University (Quebec City). He acted as Project Director with the international ArcticNet research network. He is also researcher with the Ecole Supérieure d’Études Internationales (ESEI) and chairs the Conseil québécois d’Études géopolitiques (Quebec Council for Geopolitical Studies, CQEG) at Laval University.

With his book L’éveil du dragon. Les défis du développement de la Chine au XXIe siècle (Presses de l’Université du Québec) [The awakening of the dragon. The challenges of development in China in the 21st century], he won the HEC Best Business Book Award 2006.

He conducted extensive research in the field of Arctic geopolitics, water management, transport geopolitics and maritime borders, enabling him to publish more than 150 peer-reviewed papers and 27 books.

Frédéric Lasserre

Graduate Student Fellow (MACD)

Nadine Graham

BIG | Jean Monnet Human-to-Military Security Database Project – University of Victoria

Nadine Graham joined the BIG team in June 2022 as a Graduate Student Fellow.  She is currently completing a Master of Arts in Community Development in the Public Administration Department at UVic and focuses on the analysis of Immigration and Settlement related policy, non-profit settlement services as well as migration and border studies. She previously completed a Master’s in Immigration Management (Now called Migration Studies) at Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona, Spain. She has 5 years of experience working with newcomers in the settlement field, in both language and employment. Nadine has had two book reviews published about gender inequality in China and cyber crimes against women in India in the Asian Journal of Women’s Studies.

Nadine Graham

21st Century Borders: Emergent Challenges Within & Among States

Program Overview

The 21st Century Borders grant is a seven-year SSHRC Partnership Grant. The research program builds off the work of the previous Borders in Globalization SSHRC Partnership Grant (2013-2020) which sought to understand the changing nature of borders through six thematic areas in order to document how state-centred and territorially-fixated research limits our understanding of borders. 21st Century Borders builds off the work done in the first grant with the goal of exploring and advancing the required epistemological shift from a state- centric and territorial logic to nodal and mobile logics that focus on both the internal and external forces that challenge the territorial integrity of states. While the first grant revealed the limitations of state-centred and territorially bound understanding of borders, this grant seeks to understand how we, as academics and policymakers, can move beyond that model.

We do this by focusing on three interrelated themes:

  • Pillar 1: Looking inside of states at how Indigenous awareness and resurgences, along with increasingly prevalent politics of nationhood and nationalism, affect, fragment, and re-draft intergovernmental relations.
  • Pillar 2: Examining the relationship between bordering processes and states’ territoriality, with particular attention paid to examining trade flows and human mobility – both within a states’ international boundaries and across international and transnational legal and regulatory regimes.
  • Comparing how the politics in both the above-mentioned cases affect the geopolitics of borders across global regimes.

Program Structure

The grant itself is comprised of two parallel research pillars. Pillar one, led by Jeff Corntassel, and pillar two, led by Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly. While these two pillars work parallel to each other within the grant, the conceptual knowledge base and program understandings will flow between the two pillars and through into country specific case-studies. The two vertical pillars are cross-sectioned by two overarching themes: ecology and security. These themes will address issues of both ecology and security from within the contexts of the two primary pillars. Additionally, partners in the grant may choose to use their expertise to focus on country-specific case studies.

Pillar 1

Nationhood & Nationalism

Pillar one explores how claims of nationhood and nationalism exist in the Indigenous and regionalist experiences in borderlands. There is a growing body of literature that examines Indigenous nationhood claims and another, separate, body literature that looks at regionalist and nationalist claims in Europe. The goal of this pillar is to bridge the gap between these two literatures and explore how claims of nationhood and nationalist claims are similar, how they are different, and how they factor into claims of Indigenous self-determination. Through the work done here, this project examines ways that Indigenous nations, communities, and peoples challenge the territoriality of states and other patriarchal institutions in order to generate new understandings of how Indigenous relationships develop and persist beyond boundaries. By interrogating terms such as nationhood, international, self-determination, and borders, this project seeks to advance a deeper understanding of how these terms and relationships are viewed from diverse Indigenous perspectives.

Pillar 2

Territory & Connectivity

While pillar one deals with issues of territory, pillar two deals with issues of human mobility and trade flows by identifying and examining the instruments and infrastructures of connectivity. This includes structures, regulations, and functions of borders. Research occurring in this pillar may focus on issues such as pre-border clearance mechanisms, the externalization of borders, state-to-state security agreements, integrated border management regimes, strategies for preserving life in cross-border regions during crises. (List is not exhaustive and new projects will be reviewed by the academic and international advisory boards annually).

Partnership Composition

21st Century Borders is funded by a seven-year Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) Partnership Grant. In addition to funding from SSHRC, our academic partners contribute matching funding and our non-academic partners provide cash and in-kind support for research and knowledge mobilization activities. This project is directed by Dr. Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly at the University of Victoria (Victoria, Canada) and co-lead by Dr. Jeffrey Corntassel (University of Victoria). The academic partnership consists of eight Canadian university partners: Carleton University, École Nationale d’Administration Publique, Royal Military College of Canada, Trent University, Université du Québec à Montréal, Laval, Flemming College, and the University of Victoria; and six international university partners: Radboud University (The Netherlands), Université de Grenoble (France), University of Southern Denmark, South Asia University (India); Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil), and Western Washington University.

Our policy partners include: the Canada Border Services Agency, the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region (USA/Canada), the Association of European Border Regions (Europe), the World Customs Organization (Brussels), Transfrontier Euro-Institut Network – TIEN (Europe), Mission Opérationnelle Transfrontalière – M.O.T (France).

Research Affiliates

The 21st Century Borders research partnerships includes a number of scholars from around the world working with us on a variety of different projects. This list is updated regularly as we add new projects and expand the partnership.

Aileen Espiritu (UiT The Arctic University of Norway); Alan Bersin (Harvard University); Alex Buhk (Victoria University of Wellington); Amael Cattaruzza (Institut Français de Géopolitique); Budd Hall (University of Victoria); Can Mutlu (Acadia University); Daniel Meier (PACTE); Eve Tuck (University of Toronto); Evert Lindquist (University of Victoria); Fabienne Leloup (UCLouvain); Francisco Lara-Valencia (Arizona State University); Frédérique Berrod (Université de Strasbourg); Glen Coulthard (University of British Columbia); Guadalupe Correo Cabrera (George Mason University); Heidi Stark (University of Victoria); Irasema Coronado (Arizona State University); Isabel Altamirano-Jiménez (University of Alberta); Jamie Ferrill (Charles Stuart University); Katy Hayward (Queen’s University Belfast); Michelle Daigle (University of British Columbia); Mirza Zulfiqur Rahman (Institute of Chinese Studies – Delhi); Naomi Chi (Hakkaido University); Said Saddiki (Université Sidi Mohamed Ben Abdallah); Simon Dalby (Wilfrid Laurier University); Tamara Krawchenko (University of Victoria); Whitney Lackenbauer (University of Waterloo).

Funding Partners

BIG and the EU Network @ The Association for Borderlands Studies Annual Conference

San Diego, USA | April 24-26, 2019

The Borders in Globalization and EU Network research programs are using the Association for Borderlands Studies Annual Conference to showcase its own research and to highight what we have learned in the past six years. BIG has composed eleven panels for the ABS Conference; panels that will feature international colleagues, Canadian leads, and students from across our program. Several of the panels are co-organized and co-funded by our Jean Monnet Network Comparing and Contrasting EU Border and Migration Policies, thanks to generous funding from the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Commission.

The conference convenes April 24 – April 26 at the Manchester Hyatt in downtown San Diego, CA.

Full ABS Program

Featured Panels

Lessons and Debates Emerging from Borders in Globalization
Panel 16: Thursday 1:00 – 2:30, Coronado Ballroom D

Chair: Akihiro Iwashita, University of Hokkaido
Discussants: Birte Wassenberg, University of Strasbourg, James Scott, University of Eastern Finland

“Developing and Applying the BIG Analytical Frame: Challenges for National Case Studies”
Anne Laure Amilhat-Szary, Grenoble-Alpes University

“Territoriality to A-Territoriality – What Does this Mean for Border Studies?”
Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly, University of Victoria

“Global Sustainability?”
Simon Dalby, Wilfrid Laurier University

“Managing Cross-Border Economic and Human Movements: Fluids, Spaghetti, Rebar”
Geoffrey E. Hale, University of Lethbridge

“Border Culture in Globalization”
Victor Konrad, Carleton University

Lessons and Debates Emerging from Borders in Globalization
Panel 25: Thursday 4:30 – 6:00, Coronado Ballroom B

Chair: Akihiro Iwashita, University of Hokkaido
Discussants: James Scott, University of Eastern Finland & Anne Laure Amilhat-Szary, Grenoble-Alpes University

“Quebec: Fontière sous tension”
Élisabeth Vallet, University of Quebec Montreal

“Security Beyond the Border: The Globalization of Trends and Patterns in Border Management”
Christian Leuprecht, Royal Military College of Canada

“Borders in Arctic Context”
Heather Nicol, Trent University

“Borders, Globalization and History”
Randy Widdis, University of Regina

Comparing Countries’ Borders
Panel 52: Friday 4:30 – 6:00, Coronado Ballroom D

Moderator: Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly

“Canada: Between Territoriality and A-Territoriality?”
Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly and Michael Carpenter, University of Victoria

“Denmark, Trapped in Territoriality?”
Martin Klatt, University of Southern Denmark

Margit Saare, Western Washington University and University of Victoria

“French Border, A Side Story?”
Anne Laure Amilhat-Szary, Grenoble-Alpes University

“The Dutch Borders as Barriers or Creative Resources”
Martin van der Velde, Radboud University

“Northern Ireland”
Kate Hayward, Queens Belfast University

Roundtable: European Union Border, Migration, and Security Policies in Comparative Perpsective
Panel 57: Saturday 8:00 – 9:30

Moderator: Akihiro Iwashita, University of Hokkaido
Discussant: Victor Konrad, Carleton University

“Japan’s Borders in the Contemporary World”
Ted Boyle, Kyushu University

“Comparing European Union Migration, Borders and Security Policies with Canada and Japan”
Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly, University of Victoria

“Politics of Mobility in East Asia: Focusing on Recent Revision to Japan’s Immigration Act”
Naomi Chi, Hokkaido University

“Border Control and Security at the EU’s External Borders”
Can Mutlu, Acadia University

“Refugees, the Rise of Exclusionary Nationalism, and the Politics of Borders”
Oliver Schmidtke, University of Victoria

“The Refugee Crisis and the End of the Myth of a Europe Without Borders in European Integration and Cross-border Cooperation”
Birte Wassenberg, University of Strasbourg

BIG and the EU Network @ The Association for Borderlands Studies Annual Conference

BIG Theme – History

In the realm of contemporary border studies, there is tendency at times to overlook or minimize the changeable, dynamic context of the existence of borders, and just accepting borders as a given. So in researching the history of borders in globalization, it is necessary to shake this idea up, to give its centrism a bit of a poke – which we hope to do.

In one of our focuses, looking at the evolution of the Canadian-American borderlands, we hope to emphasize how organic these places are, how they evolve over time to become different kinds of spaces, how borderlands and their histories are far from homogenous.

Canadian and American border patrol shake hands at the International Boundary line, 1938.
Photo Credit: Minnesota Historical Society (Flickr)

Following an approach that lead researcher Randy Widdis terms spatial grammar,  investigators will explore the evolution of five Canada-U.S. borderland regions – the Atlantic, the St. Lawrence, the Great Lakes, the Prairies/Plains, and the Pacific Northwest – from the end of the American Revolution to the signing of the US-Canada Free Trade Agreement in 1989.

A second major theme will involve interrogating notions of sovereignty over time, and their relation to debates that occurred in these regions in the late 19th and early 20th Centuries over empire, immigration, and federalism. In particular, research will look at how this idea of sovereignty played a central role in historical debates about immigration in the North American west and explore how American, Canadian, British, Japanese, Chinese, and south Asian commentators in these often sharp debates understood sovereignty differently.

It will be especially important to interrogate how these patterns of thought had very real impacts on mobility and border-making, just as mobility and border-making, quite naturally, had very real impacts on these patterns of thought.

We need to know how fluid these concepts of sovereignty in the Pacific North were and how they interacted with each other. Were there overlapping conceptions of sovereignty amongst these different groups? How was it redefined, challenged and consolidated over the years? How did competing forces and visions of empire, state-building, border-making and indeed global capitalism complicate this question of sovereignty in this part of the world?

A third subtheme will focus on Aboriginal Borderlands, specifically addressing the following questions: How have Indigenous conceptions of space and territoriality evolved in relation to economic considerations, whether the use-rights of a seasonal economy, wage work, or reservation resources? How have conceptions of space and territoriality evolved in relation to diplomacy and warfare among Indigenous nations and between these nations and representatives of (neo) European empires (fur traders, missionaries, colonial officials, military personnel)? How have Indigenous conceptions of space and territoriality evolved in relation to neo-European nation-building, including the imposition of the international border, and the larger colonial process of political subjugation, territorial dispossession, and management of the dispossessed and subjugated population, rendering it dependent on the state?  How have Indigenous conceptions of space and territoriality evolved in relation to more recent reassertions of Indigenous national sovereignty in relation to the U.S.-Canada border?  

Randy Widdis at the University of Regina will lead the History theme. His colleagues are: David Atkinson (Purdue), Susan Gray (Arizona State), and Yukari Takai (York University).

BIG Region – British Columbia

Photo Credit: Jess Barnett (unsplash)

British Columbia, Canada’s westernmost province, borders three American states to the south, Washington, Idaho and Montana; Alberta across the Rocky Mountains to the east; the Yukon to the north; Alaska to northwest, and the Pacific Ocean to the west. 

Vancouver Island and Haida Gwaii (previously the Queen Charlotte Islands) protect much of the rugged coastline south of the Alaskan border. Meanwhile, there are several land border crossings between BC and Washington – 13 in total –  particularly in the west, where four major crossings facilitate heavy traffic flows between the Vancouver and Seattle corridor.  The Port of Vancouver is Canada’s largest and busiest seaport, and there is significant shipping traffic along the coast of British Columbia and through the surrounding international waters. Southwestern British Columbia is closely connected through business, transport, tourism, and culture with Washington state, with the region, including  the state of Oregon to the south of Washington, is colloquially known as the Pacific Northwest or Cascadia. 

For some time now, there has been an established network of scholars working on the BC / Washington border. Fresh research on questions of governance explored the mechanisms, policies, and regulatory regimes at various levels of government and outside government that seek to manage borders and border regions in BC.  How do regional entities interact with federal entities in BC, for example?  What issues warrant cross-border cooperation and what are the criteria for coordination?

On the cultural front, what is the degree of cross-border culture in BC? What are its characteristics? How has culture influenced management of the border and how has the border influence culture? Tourism, recreation, and sports create a shared culture across the BC border, but what issues create a clash of culture?  Several First Nations’ territories span the border – can we apply lessons from this to broader cross-border governance?

What are the major historical events that have defined, influenced or characterized the BC-Washington border? How did the border change after NAFTA and 9/11? Will it change after the passage of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement between the European Union and Canada? Have policies on one side of the border influenced policies on the other side of the border?

What are the key considerations for security along the BC border, and how do these relate to the movement of goods, services, and people?  Are they changing or long-standing?  What are the key security considerations along the marine border?  What are the greatest points of vulnerability in BC’s ports of entry? If we are moving to a peripheral approach to security, what impacts will this have on BC and how would this be reflected on other borders?

How does the border affect flows and how do flows affect the regulatory system for dealing with borders in BC/Wash? What are the policies, currently in place, to deal with the flows of goods, services, people and capital? What efforts are in place to improve those policies? What are the governance gaps in managing flows? What are the acupuncture points in the regulatory regime for affective policy? Can we apply lessons learned from the BC/Alberta Trade Investment, Labour and Mobility Agreement (TILMA) to the BC/Washington border? What impact has the rise of Asian powers had on BC flows?

Lastly, in the BC context, how do we define sustainability?  There are several water-related issues ripe for examination in BC, including: the Columbia River Treaty renegotiation, McKenzie River watershed management, First Nations’ water rights, the energy-water nexus and the impact of industry on watershed management (e.g. energy development in the McKenzie, versus hydro in the Columbia), impact of international treaties on excluded stakeholders, and lack of harmonized regulatory standards for water and wastewater quality.

Dr. Helga Kristin Hallgrimsdottir at the University of Victoria led the British Columbia region with Dr. Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly (UVic).