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ECOINT Senior Fellow

sabine.selchow AT

Dr Sabine Selchow

Sabine comes as a political researcher into the ECOINT-team. 


Building on ECOINT’s working definition of ‘international economic thinking’ as ideas about ‘the economy’ generated in and through intergovernmental organisations (IOs) and associated international non-governmental organisations (INGOs), Sabine works towards a theory of international economic thinking. 


She does this 

  • by investigating how the social world is constituted through IGOs and INGOs and how this practice of world constitution changes over time and differs between organisations; 

  • by mapping the social ontologies produced through IGOs and INGOs.

Her current project looks at the World Bank


Sabine’s ECOINT-work is driven by her general interest in how modern institutions and concepts, in general, and the nation-state, in particular, are reinvented in the face of global and planetary challenges and the reflexive dynamics of modernisation. She starts on the premise that we are living in a ‘cosmopolitised reality‘ (taking this concept from Ulrich Beck’s work) and seeks to identify and assess discursive openings that acknowledge this reality and provide possibilities for imagining human futures beyond modern conceptual frameworks. 


Following from this, her work is shaped by three normative premises:

  1. The naturalised externalisation of the bads of modern lifestyles is problematic (Selchow 20162020, also 2021).   

  2. The uncritical reproduction of modern concepts and institutions is problematic (ibid.)

  3. The realisation of substantive democracy worldwide is desirable. 


Sabine applies different discourse analytical research strategies and combines close and distant reading techniques in corpus-driven and corpus-based analyses. 


In addition to her main ECOINT-research agenda, Sabine thinks about how humanities and social science knowledge could and should be publicly communicated and how to best present and visualise ECOINT’s findings in a way that attracts attention and triggers interest beyond our known academic audience. 


Sabine joined ECOINT in 2020, coming from the University of Sydney where she was Research Fellow in the ARC-Laureate Program in International History and  Research Associate at the Centre for International Security Studies (CISS) (ongoing). Before her Sydney-appointment, she spent over a decade at the LSE where she received her PhD in Government and, subsequently, worked as a Research Fellow in the Global Civil Society Programme and the ERC Advanced Grant programme ‘Security in Transition’, both directed by Prof Mary Kaldor at LSE’s Civil Society and Human Security Research Unit. From 2013 to 2016, she was also a Research Fellow in Ulrich Beck’s ERC-funded project ‘Methodological Cosmopolitanism: In the Laboratory of Climate Change’ at Ludwig-Maximillians-Universität Munich. Both, the work of Mary Kaldor and Ulrich Beck are significant signposts in Sabine’s thinking.


Sabine is the author of Negotiations of the ‘New World’: The Omnipresence of Global as a Political Phenomenon (Transcript, 2017; an open access version of the book is available; click here to open it (opens in new tab), which explores what social and political actors do when they use the adjective ‘global’, and she is co-editor of Global Civil Society (Sage, 2012, with M Kaldor and H. Moore), Subterranean Politics in Europe (Palgrave, 2015, with M Kaldor), EU Global Strategy and Human Security: Rethinking Approaches to Conflict (Routledge, 2018, with M Kaldor and I Rangelov). 


Sabine has a number of other publications, which include ‘Planetary disasters: moving the UN disaster risk reduction framework into cosmopolitised reality‘ (Environmental Politics, 2021)  ‘Starting somewhere different: methodological cosmopolitanism and the study of world politics’ (Global Networks, 2020, 20(3): 544-563), ‘Understanding the Foundation of the new EU Global Strategy: Mogherini’s Strategic Assessment’ (in EU Global Strategy and Human Security: Rethinking Approaches to Conflict. London), ‘The Paths not (Yet) Taken: Ulrich Beck, the ‘Cosmopolitised World’ and Security Studies’ (Security Dialogue, 2016, 47(5): 369-385) and ‘Resilience and resilient in Obama’s National Security Strategy 2010: Enter two ‘political keywords’ (Politics, 2016, 37(1): 36-51).


For all her publications see her google.scholar-site or her personal website.



Filter by publication type
Selchow, Sabine
"Business and the Planetary History of International Environmental Governance in the 1970s"
Contemporary European History , 31(4): 553 - 569 (with Glenda Sluga and Ben Huf)
Selchow, Sabine
"Planetary disasters: moving the UN disaster risk reduction framework into cosmopolitised reality"
Environmental Politics 31(1): 28-48
Selchow, Sabine
"From “economic and social questions” to national containers and two notions of ‘political’: findings of a systematic analysis of the symbolic construction of ‘economic problems’ in the League of Nation’s Bruce Report (1939)"
 EUI Working Paper 2022/07
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