Eva Claessen's Visiting Fellowship
9 Aug 2022

Eva Claessen's Visiting Fellowship

Visiting Fellowship Program

In May, Eva Claessen joined us for a Visiting Fellowship at The Hague Program on International Cyber Security at Leiden University's The Hague Campus. We sat down with her to hear about her fellowship experience.

Why were you interested in coming here?

The program first piqued my interest in the beginning stage of my PhD research, after I read the policy brief exploring the commonalities and divergences between Chinese and Russian perspectives on cyberspace. This brief coincided perfectly with my research topic regarding Russian narratives on cyberspace governance. When I found out the origin of this publication was a research network taking a multi-disciplinary approach to discussions on cybersecurity and cyberspace governance, I reached out to inquire about the visiting fellowship. After being accepted, I was warmly welcomed into the network. Even though I could not start the fellowship at the planned time due to the out-break of the corona virus, I got the opportunity to already collaborate with the team. I particularly appreciated the chance to contribute to a collection of essays on various states' approaches to cyber terrorism. When I started the fellowship itself, I was delighted to meet with this stellar team of researchers and connect about shared research interests.

What did you work on during the fellowship?

As I am in the final year of the PhD, I spent most of my time on the writing of my thesis and preparing an article on the make-up of the Russian Federation's strategic narratives in the area of the UN cyber norms debate. Due to the inspiring environment and the positivity of everyone there, my work progressed very well. Aside from that, I enjoyed talking with the members of the team and Julia Voo, who was there as well for a visiting fellowship.

What's next for you?

Now that I am back at the KU Leuven, I will be finalizing my thesis and my work within the project CONNECTlVITY. Additionally, I am working to conclude work on a couple of articles by the end of the year. I hope to stay in touch with the team in The Hague. Overall, the experience of being part of this network and meeting its members has enriched my experience as a PhD student and it has encouraged me to explore my topic from a variety of disciplinary angles.

Are you also interested to join our Visiting Fellowship Program? Applications are welcomed, reviewed and awarded year-round. Check out the Fellowships section for more information and the application process.