Prof Érico Duarte, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul
DRN: How did you get involved with the studies of Maritime Security?
Dr Duarte: My interest in maritime security studies took place between 2010 and 2013, when Brazil attempted to revitalize the South Atlantic Peace and Cooperation Zone (ZOPACAS) forum and launched new acquisition and development programs for the Brazilian Navy, such as the Submarine Development Program (PROSUB) and the Blue Amazon Management System (SisGAAz).
Since then, I conducted three research projects on the subject, one of them being inter-institutional cooperation on defense (Pro-Defesa) with funding from the Ministry of Defense and in collaboration with the Brazilian Naval War College. In parallel, I worked as a professor and researcher in institutions in Europe and Africa focusing on that theme. In 2013, I was invited to hold the Rui Barbosa Chair at Leiden University to lecture on Brazilian security issues and its interests and policies for the South Atlantic. In 2015, I was a visiting researcher at the Institute for Peace and Security Policy Studies at the University of Hamburg to conduct research on European Union and European countries' maritime security agendas for the South Atlantic. In 2016, I was a visiting researcher at the Corbett Centre for Maritime Policy Studies at King's College London. Finally, between 2016 and 2020, I worked as a collaborating professor at the Joaquim Chissano University in Mozambique, contributing to research and publications on maritime security, with a focus on actions for the protection of the Exclusive Economic Zone and the Indian Ocean.
DRN: What was your motivation to focus on the Global South region and Falklands?
Dr Duarte: As part of my assignments in the Pro-Defense research network, I was commissioned to organize a book on maritime security in the South Atlantic with contributors from the Global South. The development of this network was so great that it produced two books, published by Palgrave Macmillan, with chapters on maritime security topics that cut across the South Atlantic, as well as more narrowly focused issues of national interest to Argentina, Brazil, Nigeria, and South Africa. In these two books, the Falklands issue came up several times because of its resurgence during Cristina Kirchner's administration. This interest of mine has strengthened with the gradual access to the British and Argentine archives of the war since 2012. Finally, my interest in the Falklands War was because it was the last major war at sea and because it was a clear case of limited war, which has been one of my main research agendas today.
DRN: Considering the contemporary international scenario, which regions do you think deserve closer attention for potential conflicts involving maritime operations?
Dr Duarte: I think the various conflicts around the Straits of Malacca will reignite with the international polarization since the trade war between China and the United States during the Trump administration and now even more so with the Ukrainian-Russian war. The countries of the Southeast Asian region, in the coming years, will be pressured to take positions and alignments more clearly against or in favor of the United States and West, which will further strain the complex network of interdependencies and unresolved historical issues of the countries around the straits as well as those countries that crucially depend on them such as China, Japan, Australia, and South Korea for access to their markets. Moreover, piracy and other maritime crimes have escalated again in the region, which may denote a reduction of instances of cooperation and become additional variables of tension that may justify disputes and rivalries.
For further information on Dr Duarte research on maritime operations, check out his publications below:
- The Falklands/Malvinas War in the South Atlantic. Palgrave Macmillan, 2021.
- Maritime Security Challenges in the South Atlantic. Palgrave Macmillan, 2019 (co-edited with Manuel Correia de Barros).
- Navies and Maritime Policies in the South Atlantic. Palgrave Macmillan, 2019 (co-edited with Manuel Correia de Barros).
- The Falklands War and the Soviet Involvement: Perceptions and Implications for Argentina, United Kingdom, and the United States. Pasado Abierto, 2022 (forthcoming)
- The Ends and Naval Means in the Context of the Exclusive Economic Zone. Brazilian Journal of Defense Studies, v. 6, nº 2, p. 39-61, 2019, (co-author Gustavo Moura)
- Contesting Perspectives on South Atlantic Maritime Security Governance: Brazil and South Africa. South African Journal of International Affairs, v. 26, nº.3, p. 395-412, 2019, (co-author Kai Michael Kenkel).
- Brazil, the Blue Economy and the Maritime Security of the South Atlantic. Journal of the Indian Ocean Region, v. 12, nº 1, p. 97-111, 2016.
- Drugs, Piracy and Sovereignty: Brazil, United States and European Union’s Security Perspectives for South Atlantic. S&F Sicherheit und Frieden, v. 34, p. 185-190, 2016.
- Approaches to Maritime Security in the Atlantic. Dunkwürdigkeiten: Journal der Politisch- Militärischen Gesellschaft. n°83, 9-11, 2013
- Maritime Security in the South Atlantic. In: Ruxandra-Laura Boşilcă, Susana Ferreira and Barry J. Ryan (ed.). Routledge Handbook of Maritime Security, 2022.
- Elementos Conceituais para Gestão da Segurança Marítima. In: Emílio Zeca. (Org.). Segurança Marítima, Governação Oceânica e Desafios Estratégicos para a Defesa e Segurança Nacional. 1ed.Maputo: TCP Editora, 2020, v. , p. 10-24. (with Gustavo Moura)
- Securing the South Atlantic: in Favour of a Revised Brazilian Maritime Strategy. In: Brooke Smith-Windsor. (ed.). Enduring NATO, Rising Brazil. Rome: NATO Defence College, 2015.
- International Cooperation for Ensuring the Safety of Brazil's Land and Maritime Boundaries. In: Felix Dane. (ed.). Multilateral Security Governance. Rio de Janeiro: Fundação Konrad Adenauer, 2014.
- Global Port Security and its Possible Reflections in Brazil. In: Carlos Arturi. (ed.). Políticas de Defesa, Inteligência e Segurança. Porto Alegre: Ed. UFRGS, 2014. (co-author Heitor Bonato).