Kirsten Andersen

Junior Affiliate (PhD)

Kirsten Andersen is a PhD candidate in Politics at York University.
Security and terrorism themes run through the research undertaken during both my master’s and PhD education. Andersen’s master’s thesis examined armed drones’ situation within
international humanitarian law (‘IHL’) and its foundational ethical framework. Her current
doctoral research builds on this earlier work to consider how drones are used by state actors in
armed conflict and their relationship with IHL. This analysis examines developments in
international law’s history and weapons technology advancements to better understand the
when, where, and why of state drone use for national security, counterterrorism, and global
governance. Andersen argues that much of what appears unique about drones is consistent with aerial war’s history, and that the imperial context from which IHL emerged directly shaped the regime and facilitated the legal use of air power against civilian populations in the global periphery.
Upon PhD completion Andersen hopes to enter the public service as a security policy analyst.

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