Professor Richard G Whitman

Professor of Politics and International Relations
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Professor Richard G Whitman


Professor Richard G. Whitman is Professor of Politics and International Relations in the School of Politics and International Relations. He joined the University of Kent in September 2011. 

Professor Whitman is also a Senior Associate Fellow at the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) and an Academic Fellow at the European Policy Centre. He regularly writes and researches for think tanks.

He was Professor of Politics at the University of Bath 2006-2011. Senior Fellow, Europe (April 2006-April 2007) and Head of the European Programme at Chatham House (April 2004 to April 2006). Prior to arrival at Chatham House he was Professor of European Studies at the University of Westminster and where he was also Director of the Centre for the Study of Democracy from 2001-2003.

Richard Whitman is a contributor to leading journals, and has presented many papers and keynote addresses. His current research interests include the external relations and foreign and security and defence policies of the UK and the EU. He is a former editor of the Journal of Common Market Studies on the editorial boards of European Security and Studia Diplomatica. He is an ESRC Senior Fellow on its UK in a Changing Europe  initiative and leading a project on Securing Global Britain: Building and sustaining plurilateral practices of security cooperation in Europe

Professor Whitman is a regular media commentator, working with print and broadcast media at home and overseas. He has been interviewed widely on Europe and European integration. Recent coverage has included BBC radio and television, CNN, Bloomberg, CNBC, Newsweek, Reuters, the International Herald Tribune and the Wall Street Journal. Professor Whitman was elected a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in October 2007 and from 2009-2012 the elected Chair of the University Association for Contemporary European Studies (UACES). He was a Chair of the British International Studies Association (BISA) 2017-2018.

Research interests

Professor Whitman's current programme of research being conducted falls into three main areas:

1. Conceptualising the international role and presence of the EU

Projects in this area are focused on:       

  • European foreign policy analysis and the 'normative turn'
  • English School and the wider Europe                  

2. The EU foreign policy within a wider European and global context
Projects in this area are focused on:

  • EU and its near abroad
  • EU as a global conflict manager
  • EU and ‘significant’ powers

3. Comparative foreign policy making and European Foreign Policy analysis

  Projects in this area are focused on:        

  • Impact of the Lisbon Treaty on EU foreign policy
  • Comparative analysis of impact of EU membership on member state foreign policy and policy-making processes
  • UK Foreign and European policy




Professor Whitman is interested in supervising research degree students who wish to explore the external relations and foreign and security and defence policies of the EU. He is also interested in PhD applications on the foreign policies of European nation states and the enlargement and governance of the EU.

I am currently supervising the following PhD research projects:

Hugo Hansen, The Land of Maybe: Faroese Foreign Policy Decision-Making at the European Crossroads

Lukas Aleksander Janulewicz, The Impact of EU Membership on Poland's Foreign Aid Policy

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