The relevance of governance and social capital to understanding hybrid threats. Assessing a society's vulnerability and susceptibility towards hybrid threats through governance and social capital
This thesis asks the question: “how can the concepts of governance and social capital contribute to the MCDC-report’s analytical framework to further expose a society’s vulnerabilities and subsequent susceptibility towards hybrid threats”. By using the concepts of hybrid threats (HT) together with governance and social capital (SC) in the aspect of democracy, this thesis looks at the conflict in Crimea and Ukraine since 2014 to analyse and discuss this question. The analytical framework from the Multinational Capability Development Campaign (MCDC) report is used as the main framework for understanding HT. Through the case study, this thesis found that Ukraine has several challenges in terms of governance and SC, which made it easier for Russia to conduct its operations in Crimea and east Ukraine. The case study exposed two ways in which the concepts of governance and SC can expose a society’s vulnerabilities and susceptibility towards HT. Firstly, already existing challenges in a society and in the social relations in that society, can expose and influence other vulnerabilities, which can be exploited in HT. Secondly, governance and SC influence a society’s ability to respond and counter HT. This affects the efficiency of HT operations and the extent of their effects. The thesis concluded with a set of questions as a guideline for how to assess a society’s governance and SC situation. The questions may give an idea of the situation, which can then be used as a baseline assessment, contributing to the MCDC-report’s analytical framework to expose a society’s possible vulnerabilities and subsequent susceptibility towards HT. The idea is that a deeper understanding of the societal and civilian aspects in HT might give a better understanding and ability to counter HT. Further testing and development of such a framework, requires more research, which is beyond the limits of this thesis. Nevertheless, this thesis hopes to serve as a basis for further research on governance and SC in the context of HT.
PublisherUiT Norges arktiske universitet
UiT The Arctic University of Norway
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Copyright 2019 The Author(s)
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