The Swedish Defence University now has a postgraduate program in military history
On June 1, History with a Specialization in Military History was established as a third-cycle subject at the Swedish Defence University.
"The fact that we now have our own third-cycle courses and study programme with a military history focus contributes to our already strong research environment. This is a crucial measure in enhancing the fields of defence, crisis management, and security through military history research", says Steve Murdoch, Professor of Military History at the Department of War Studies and Military History.
Focus on the relationship between war and society
According to Steve Murdoch, while there may be individual researchers in Sweden with an interest in military history, the military history department at the Swedish Defense University is the largest and most significant military history environment in Sweden and the Nordic region. Although military history is often considered a subset of general history, it can also be regarded as a distinct field of study that exclusively examines the connection between warfare and various aspects of society.
The field of study examines the long-term effects of war on civilian communities and the relationship between military and non-military members. This is achieved by analysing how societies have historically generated resources for military purposes, including economic, personnel, and ideological factors. The research delves into the enduring effect of warfare on the non-military population and the dynamics between military and non-military members throughout history. An example of this is the examination of how society has rallied resources for military objectives in economic, personnel, and ideological realms.
Collaboration with other postgraduate programmes
The third-cycle courses and study programme in history with a military history focus will cooperate with the history graduate school jointly run by Stockholm University and Uppsala Universitiy.
"The collaboration allows us to create an area of cooperation between military history and the history subject in general, while ensuring a critical mass for our doctoral students in terms of seminars and networks. It contributes to broadening the military history research environment while providing new and important perspectives that strengthen the field for the Swedish Defence University", says Piotr Wawrzeniuk, Director of Studies for the doctoral program in military history.
Defence, crisis management and security
Since 2018, the Swedish Defence University can award Ph. D degrees in the fields of defence, crisis management and security, and the academic subjects war science and political science with a focus on crisis management and security have been established. These are now joined by military history, and the SEDU aims to establish additional degree-awarding subjects in the future.