The CWD investigates war and diplomatic relations between states past and present.


The CWD investigates war and diplomatic relations between states past and present, from defence policy and the transformation of armed forces, to diplomatic actors and the role of ideas in diplomacy, the relationship between conflict and heritage, and post-colonial security.

Research Themes

Ideas and Diplomacy

Engaging with the recent confluence between the history of ideas and diplomatic history, this theme draws from research on the links between economic theory and comparative economic diplomacy, as well as on questions of ethics of governance and legitimacy as they apply to international diplomacy.

Defence Policy and the Transformation of Armed Forces

Political entities have always adapted their defence policies and armed forces in response to geostrategic developments, evolving threats, and technological change. This theme explores the evolution of feudal, imperial, national, and supranational defence policies and armed forces, with a focus on technological innovations and Revolutions in Military Affairs (RMAs).

Diplomatic Actors

This theme embraces the increasing interest in the participation of non-state actors in international diplomacy from the medieval to the modern, from the role of business groups in international trade to the authority of religious leaders, and the literary products of diplomats.

Conflict and Heritage

This theme explores the connections between past conflict and the contemporary world, including heritage ethics, policy and management in relation to the protection of culture and heritage in war zones, digital archives and exhibitions, and the need to reassess wider social and cultural legacies of war, such as that of the nuclear past.

Post-colonial Security

Decolonisation led to a reconfiguration of the security relationships and so to a postcolonial security order in the Global South. This theme investigates how colonial powers sought to retain their defence prerogatives, as well as the postcolonial security landscape, regimes, and challenges in the Global South from decolonisation until today.


International Journal of Military History and Historiography

Edited by Dr Marco Wyss, the International Journal of Military History and Historiography is published on behalf of the International Commission of Military History (ICMH), and includes original research on military historical topics from antiquity to the contemporary period that appeal to an international readership.

New Perspectives on the Cold War

The New Perspectives on the Cold War book series, published by Brill, investigates the impact of both medium and lesser powers on the evolution of the Cold War and considers non-state as well as state actors, with a global scope that covers hitherto neglected (sub-)regions, notably in the so-called Third World.