The One with Securitization

Today I’m going to introduce the concept “Securitization”. This is useful to understand some of the discussion about security around the world. This concept entails the argument that the security issues are actually constructed.

What is Securitization?

Securitization is the process of making an issue a “security” issue.  In more difficult terms, it is the process of construction (in sociological means) of security issues.

This can be seen as one branch of Constructivism, but actually “Securitization” is first presented by Copenhagen school, lead by Buzan and Waever.

The most obvious example is Securitization by Trump. He made immigrants and refugees (which are usually ordinal political issues) national security issues.

Speech Act    

The key argument about securitization is that Securitization is SPEECH ACT.

 “The concept securitization entails the construction of threats following a ‘grammar of security’. Consequently, no issue is a threat per se, but ‘anything could be constructed as one’ by employing discourse constructions. As such, (in)security is in fact speech act.” (Herta 2017)

In a nutshell, Securitization is made by words and narratives, thus it is speech act.

Securitization is political

 “Securitization can never be reduced to the conditions of its social accomplishment: it is an explicitly political choice and act.” (Williams 2003)

Securitization is not just social phenomena. It is a political choice. This notion enables us to see security issues more critically. Now we can pose a question “Is security issues which we see as security issues without doubt really security issues?”

As we can see, Securitization theory provides us the new aspect of security issues. In other words, it prevents us from stuck in one aspect of things. Today’s article is just an introduction, I hope we can discuss more Securitization in coming days.



Thank you for reading! Comments and opinions are much appreciated!

This blog is not about reading but discussing and deepen our knowledge together



Barry Buzan, Ole Waever and Jaap de Wilde, 1998, Security: a new framework for analysis. Boulder: Lynne Rienner.

Laura Herta, 2017, Security As Speech Act: Discourse Constructions on the Syrian Refugee Crisis.”

Michael C. Williams, 2003, “Words, Images, Enemies: Securitization and International Politics” International Studies Quarterly 47, pp 511-531.



One thought on “The One with Securitization

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s