Dr Jonna Nyman
Leverhulme Postdoctoral Fellow
I joined the Department of Politics at the University of Sheffield in September 2016, having previously worked at the University of Leicester. I undertook my undergraduate (BA International Relations) degree at the University of Birmingham, where I continued my studies supported by a 1+3 ESRC Studentship, completing an MA in Political Science (Research Methods) and a PhD in International Relations. My PhD focused on energy security politics in the United States and China, as a part of which I undertook six months of fieldwork in Washington DC and Beijing funded by a separate ESRC grant. My PhD was awarded in 2014.
My research centres on the politics and ethics of security, with particular interests in energy security, climate politics, and China.
At Sheffield, I am undertaking a three-year research project funded by a Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship, titled ‘Securing China: Understanding security politics beyond the West’.
I am a member of the International Politics Working Group at the University of Sheffield.
I consider teaching to be an integral part of academic life, and my love of teaching is one of the reasons why I became an academic. My teaching philosophy is centred encouraging curiosity and I see the classroom as a space where we can all question our own assumptions and explore new ideas while debating the big and small questions of international relations. I use a range of learning activities, from more traditional lectures and seminars, to role plays and simulation exercises, to push students to see the subject from different angles. I draw on ‘flipped classroom’ teaching methods, which emphasise active learning and putting students in charge of their own learning.
My teaching goal is to foster critical thinking skills: teaching students how to think, not what to think. I engage with students as independent scholars, getting them to apply theories independently to develop their own analytical skills, and giving them the tools to do so.
In the past, I have taught a wide range of subjects related to International Relations and Security Studies, at the University of Birmingham and the University of Leicester.
During the 2016-17 academic year, I will teach on the following modules:
My research interests are in the politics and ethics of security, with further interests in energy security, climate politics, and China.
My current research is grouped under three main related themes:
Conceptualising Energy Security
This work builds on my PhD research on the politics and ethics of energy security in the United States and China. It draws on critical approaches to security to understand how energy is constructed as a security issue by key actors, both in discourse and in policy practice. I’m particularly interested in contestation over the meaning of energy security, and what attaching security ‘does’ to energy. I am currently completing a book manuscript based on this work, and have also published three articles on different aspects of this work.
The Politics and Ethics of Security
I’m also interested in how we can theorise the politics and ethics of security more broadly, going beyond energy security. This has developed into further projects, including a co-edited book on Ethical Security Studies and an article on the value of security, published in Review of International Studies.
Chinese foreign and security policy
Drawing both on my previous research on Chinese energy security politics, and on my broader interests in the politics of security, I am in the early stages of a new major research project on Chinese security politics, funded by the Leverhulme Trust. I'm particularly interested in 'Chinese' constructions of security and current debates in Chinese IR.
Key Project and Grants
Nyman, J. (2018) The Energy Security Paradox: Rethinking Energy (In)security in the United States and China, Oxford: Oxford University Press. [in press]
Nyman, J. and Burke, A. (eds) (2016) Ethical Security Studies: A New Research Agenda, London and New York: Routledge.
Peer-reviewed journal articles
** a translation of this paper has been accepted for publication in China, in Strategy and Management 战略与管理]
Recent invited talks (2013-2016)
I have presented my research at a number of national and international conferences, in Europe, the United States, and Asia.