'This will certainly be a homecoming, closing the circle for me’, says Neumann, who started his academic career on a student scholarship at FNI in 1986/1987.

Neumann comes from the position as Director of Norwegian Social Research (NOVA). He has previously served as Research Director and Assistant Director at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI), and from 2012 to 2017 held the post of Montague Burton Professor of International Relations at the London School of Economics.

Neumann is very well qualified for the position, and, on behalf of the Board, I wish to convey how pleased we are with this appointment’, says Østerud.

Merited scholar

Neumann has held positions in both the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Defence. He has published extensively on issues related to international relations, state systems, diplomacy, Russia, and Norwegian foreign policy. In 2005, he co-authored the official centenary history of the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, together with Halvard Leira.

He holds a doctorate in political science from Oxford University (1992), with a dissertation on Russia and Europe (published by Routledge in 1996, Russia and the Idea of Europe). Further, he holds a doctorate in social anthropology (University of Oslo, 2009), in which he focused on diplomacy and the use of diplomats’ knowledge (published by Cornell University Press in 2012: At Home with the Diplomats).

Neumann is a member of the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters and Academica Europeae, and has received several prestigious awards for his research, most recently the James N. Rosenau Lifetime Award for Globalization Studies. He is currently a member of the Aker Scholarship Board.

Starts in 2020

Neumann follows Geir Hønneland, who has served as FNI Director since 2015. Assistant Director Lars H. Gulbrandsen will be acting in his place until Neumann arrives in January 2020.

We look forward to welcoming Neumann to the institute. Given his extensive and impressive academic track-record, and not least his broad, international research network, we feel certain that he will further strengthen FNI’s position as a leading research institute, both in Norway and abroad’, concludes Gulbrandsen.