James Shires

Mr James Shires

Research topic:
Cybersecurity in the Middle East
Degree course:

Research Themes:
Political Theory Cyber security International relations International security Power Political thought and ideologies Violence, security and conflict 

Academic Profile

My research examines cybersecurity in the Middle East, focusing on the relationships between governments, businesses, and international organisations in identifying and responding to cyber risks. I have an MSc in Global Governance and Public Policy from Birkbeck College, University of London, and a BA in Philosophy from the University of Cambridge.

Teaching specialism, interests and experience

Teaching Interests:

International Relations Theory, International Security, Middle East Politics, Qualitative Methods, Critical and Postcolonial Studies, Cybersecurity.

Teaching Experience:

Supervision of BA History and Politics thesis (2017)

MPhil International Relations seminar on “Qualitative Text Analysis” (2017)

211 Politics in the Middle East

213 International Relations in the Era of the Cold War

214 International Relations

'Emerging Security Challenges' (course for visiting students)


Anglo-Omani Society Language Scholarship (2016)

Winner, IISS Cyber Security Essay Competition (2016)

Winner, GMF Young Writer's Award (2015)               

Oxford-Santander Academic Travel Award (2015)

DPIR Cyril Foster Travel Award (2015)

ESRC DPhil Studentship (2014)

Nomination, Birkbeck Norman Price Prize in Politics (2013)

Clare College Foundation Scholarship (2007)


Shires, James. 2018. “Enacting expertise: ritual and risk in cybersecurity”, Politics and Governance 6 (2) 2018.

Shires, James. 2018. “Cybersecurity governance in the GCC”, in R. Ellis and V. Mohan (ed.) Rewired: Cybersecurity Governance. Wiley-Blackwell, forthcoming.

Shires James. 2016. “Discourses of cybersecurity: regional cyber risks in the Middle East”. Policy paper for International Institute for Strategic Studies, London.

Laporte-Oshiro, Catherine, and James Shires. 2016. “Negotiating order in cyberspace: security spirals or trade foundations?” Policy paper for German Marshall Fund, Brussels.


Conference Papers and Presentations

04/2018: "Camouflaging cybersecurity expertise"

              International Studies Association, San Francisco

03/2018: "Cybersecurity in Egypt and the Gulf states"

              Middle East Centre, LSE

11/2017: "The concept of maturity in cybersecurity"

              Cybersecurity CDT, University of Oxford

10/2017: "Cybersecurity and the arms trade"

              UK Parliament seminar, ICFUAE

10/2017: "Ethics and technology transfers in international security"

              Internet Research Network, University of Toronto

03/2017: "The international relations of cybersecurity in the Gulf states"

              COEIA, King Saud University, Riyadh

02/2017: "Export knowledge: cybersecurity in Egypt and the Gulf states"

              International Studies Association, Baltimore

06/2016: “Discourses of cyber-security: regional cyber risks in the Middle East”

               British International Studies Association, Edinburgh

06/2016: “Evolving security arrangements in the Gulf states”

               ESRC Interdisciplinary Conference, Oxford

03/2016: “Discourses of cyber-security: regional cyber risks in the Middle East”

               Western Political Science Association, San Diego

03/2016: “Conceptualising cyber risks in the Middle East”

               Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey

10/2015: “Forecast and failure in cyber-security”

               Millennium Journal of International Affairs Conference, London

09/2015: “The politics of knowledge: the construction of risk in cyber-security”

               University of Oxford Cyber Security Early Careers Symposium

06/2015: “Cyber-security as risk management”

                International Studies Graduate Workshop, Foundazione Bruno Kessler, Italy