Director of Research

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Dr. Tim Sweijs is the Director of Research at The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies (HCSS) and a Senior Research Fellow at the Netherlands’ War Studies Research Centre of the Netherlands Defence Academy. He is the Scientific Advisor to the Secretariat of the Global Commission on Responsible Artificial Intelligence in the Military Domain, an initiative of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Dr. Sweijs his work is multidisciplinary in nature and straddles political science, science and technology, strategic studies, and war studies. He is the initiator, creator and author of numerous books, articles and studies in strategic foresight, interstate coercion, contemporary and future war, emerging technologies including but not limited to AI, international norms and regimes, alliances and alignments, defence and national security planning for small and middle powers, and strategy and capability development.

For close to two decades, he has advised international organisations, governments and defence departments across the globe. Dr. Sweijs has provided expert testimony to the United Nations Security Council, the European Parliament, the Dutch Parliament, as well as to NATO’s Parliamentary Assembly. He regularly comments on international affairs in national and international media and (guest-)lectures at the Netherlands Defence Academy, Leiden University, and King’s College London. He teaches an advanced graduate and executive staff command course on the future of war.

At HCSS, Dr. Sweijs is responsible for the overall research portfolio of the entire institute, spearheading a staff of over 30 researchers and a large network of affiliated subject matter experts, working on international and national security. Dr. Sweijs is also a Research Affiliate at the Center for International Strategy, Technology and Policy in the Sam Nunn School of International Affairs at the Georgia Institute for Technology in the United States. He serves as a board member at the European Initiative for Security Studies where he chairs the War, Coercion and Statecraft Working Group.  He holds degrees in War Studies (PhD, MA), International Relations (Msc) and Philosophy (BA) from King’s College, London and the University of Amsterdam. 

In addition to many reports and articles, recent book projects include a volume on future war titled Beyond Ukraine: Debating the Future of War (Hurst, 2024), a book on coercion and interstate crisis escalation titled The Use and Utility of Ultimata in Coercive Diplomacy (Palgrave Macmillan, May 2023), as well as two other volumes titled Deterrence in the 21st Century: Insights from Theory and Practice (Asser-Springer, 2021) and The Conduct of War in the 21st Century Kinetic, Connected and Synthetic (Routledge 2021). He has just completed a manuscript titled Defence Planning for Small and Middle Powers: Rethinking Force Development in An Age of Disruption to be published by Routledge later this year. 


Out on 28 March: Tim Sweijs & Jeffrey H. Michaels (eds.), Beyond Ukraine: Debating the Future of War (Hurst, 2024) 

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Recent Work 

Empty Promises? A Year Inside the World of Multi-Domain Operations? w / Davis Ellison for War on the Rocks

The Use and Utility of Ultimata in Coercive Diplomacy (Palgrave MacMillan, 2023)

Access the dataset, codebook and case narratives at