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Kristian Åtland
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Senior Research Fellow (B.A., M.A., PhD)

Research areas:

  • Russian security and defense policy
  • Security issues in the High North/Arctic
  • Security implications of climate change
  • Maritime security issues
  • The Russian Navy

Kristian Åtland holds a MA degree in Russian cultural studies from the University of Oslo and a PhD in political science from the University of Tromsø. He currently heads FFI’s Russia program.
In the period from 1994 to 2002, he was employed in the Norwegian Foreign Service and served as desk officer in the Foreign Ministry’s Russia and CIS division, as Second Secretary at the Norwegian Embassy in Kiev, and as Consul at the Norwegian Consulate General in San Francisco. 
Since 2002, he has worked as a research fellow at the Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (FFI). He has published a number of articles, research reports, and book chapters on various Russia-related topics. Many of his recent publications center on security issues in the High North/Arctic.
In 2007–2008, he was a Fulbright visiting scholar at the Institute of Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies (ISEEES), University of California, Berkeley.


Selected publications

Kristian Åtland, Tor Bukkvoll, Johannes Due Enstad og Truls Tønnessen (2016) Russlands militære intervensjon i Syria

– bakgrunn, gjennomføring og konsekvenser

FFI-rapport 2016/00500

Kristian Åtland (2016) North European Security after the Ukraine conflict, 

Defense & Security Analysis, Vol. 32, No. 2 


Kristian Åtland (2016) Russlands militære nærvær i nord – status og fremtidsutsikter, 

Luftled, No. 1.


Kristian Åtland (2016) Myndighetsutøver, ressursforvalter og livredder – den russiske kystvakten i støpeskjeen, 

Nordisk Østforum, Vol. 30, No. 1


Kristian Åtland og Tor Bukkvoll (2015) Russlands kriger i Georgia og Ukraina – konsekvenser og lærdommer for Norge

i Tormod Heier og Anders Kjølberg (red): Norge og Russland – sikkerhetspolitiske utfordringer i nordområdene

Oslo: Universitetsforlaget.


Kristian Åtland og Una Hakvåg (2014) Russlands intervensjon i Ukraina – gjennomføring og konsekvenser, 

Norsk Militært Tidsskrift, Vol. 184, No. 4.


Kristian Åtland (2014) The Status of Svalbard and its Consequences for International Politics, 

i Eckart D. Stratenschulte (red.): Heilsame Vielfalt? Formen differenzierter Integration in Europa. Baden-Baden: Nomos.  

Kristian Åtland (2014) Interstate Relations in the Arctic: An Emerging Security Dilemma? Comparative Strategy, Vol. 33, No. 2
Kristian Åtland (2014) Russian-Western Relations in the Arctic: Perceptions, Politics and Prospects, European Leadership Network
Kristian Åtland (2013) Russisk amfibisk evne mot 2020 – kapasiteter og operasjonskonsept,
FFI-rapport 2013/02236 
Kristian Åtland and Torbjørn Pedersen (2013) Cold War Legacies in Russia’s Svalbard Policy, in Gunhild Hoogensen Gjørv, Dawn R. Bazely, Marina Golovznina & Andrew J. Tanentzap (eds.): Environmental and Human Security in the Arctic. London & New York: Routledge.
Kristian Åtland (2013) Norsk krisehåndtering og forholdet til Russland, i Tormod Heier og Anders Kjølberg (red): Mellom fred og krig – norsk militær krisehåndtering. Oslo: Universitetsforlaget.
Kristian Åtland (2013) The Security Implications of Climate Change in the Arctic Ocean, in Paul A. Berkman & Alexander N. Vylegzhanin (eds.): Environmental Security in the Arctic Ocean. Dordrech: Springer. 
Kristian Åtland (2012) Nordområdene som samarbeidsarena, i Bjørn Olav Knutsen (red.): Mot nord. Oslo: Europabevegelsen 2012.
Kristian Åtland (August 2011) Russia’s Armed Forces and the Arctic: All Quiet on the Northern Front? Contemporary Security Policy, Vol. 32, No. 2
Kristian Åtland (2010) Russia and its Neighbors: Military Power, Security Politics, and Interstate Relations in the Post-Cold War Arctic, Arctic Review on Law and Politics, Vol. 1, No. 2
Kristian Åtland (2010) Russia, the Barents Sea, and the Arctic: From Cold War to Petroleum Bonanza? in Bertil Nygren, Bo Huldt, Patrik Ahlgren, Pekka Svionen & Susanna Huldt (eds.): Russia on Our Minds: Russian Security Policy and Northern Europe, Strategic Yearbook 2008-2009. Stockholm: National Defence University
Kristian Åtland, Security implications of climate change in the Arctic
FFI report 2010/01097
Kristian Åtland (2009) When Security Speech Acts Misfire: Russia and the ’Elektron’ Incident”, Security Dialogue, Vol. 40, No. 3
Kristian Åtland (2009) Russia’s Northern Fleet and the Oil Industry – Rivals or Partners? Petroleum, Security and Civil-Military Relations in the Post-Cold War European Arctic”, Armed Forces and Society, Vol. 35, No. 1
Kristian Åtland (2008) The Svalbard Archipelago in Russian Security Policy: Overcoming the Legacy of Fear – or Reproducing It?” European Security, Vol. 17, No. 2-3
Kristian Åtland (2008) Mikhail Gorbachev, the Murmansk Initiative, and the Desecuritization of Interstate Relations in the Arctic”, Cooperation and Conflict, Vol. 43, No. 3
Kristian Åtland (2007) The Introduction, Adoption and Implementation of Russia’s Northern Strategic Bastion Concept, 1992–1999”, Journal of Slavic Military Studies, Vol. 20, No. 4
Kristian Åtland, The European Arctic after the Cold War: How can we analyze it in terms of security?
FFI report 2007/00344
Kristian Åtland, Tor Bukkvoll, Morten Jeppesen og Iver Johansen (2005) Hvor går Russland? Fem scenarier om Russland og norsk sikkerhet i 2030 [Where to, Russia? Five scenarios about Russia and Norwegian security in 2030]. Oslo: Abstrakt


Kristian Åtland. Foto: FFI
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