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School of Politics and International Relations

Dr Georg Loefflmann, BA, Erfurt; MA, FU Berlin; PhD, Warwick.


Lecturer in US Foreign Policy

Twitter: @gloefflmann
Office Hours: Monday 15:30-16:30 (online) and Tuesday 13:00-14:00 (in person, ArtsOne 2.42)


Previously, I was Assistant Professor in War Studies and US Foreign Policy at the Department of Politics and International Studies (PAIS) at the University of Warwick (until March 2023). Before that, I undertook a three-year Early Career Fellowship (2018-2021) funded by the Leverhulme Trust with a research project on the interlinkage of security discourses and populist rhetoric in the United States under the Trump presidency.

My other academic appointments include my role as research fellow working with Nick Vaughan-Williams on his project ‘Everyday Narratives of European Border Security and Insecurity’ (2016-2018) and a one-year PAIS teaching fellowship in American politics and US foreign policy (2015-2016). Between 2011 and 2014, I undertook my PhD studies the University of Warwick. My PhD thesis is titled: ‘The Fractured Consensus - How competing visions of grand strategy challenge the geopolitical identity of American leadership under the Obama presidency,’ and was supervised by Prof. Stuart Croft and Prof. Nick Vaughan-Williams. The thesis was nominated for the 2016 Michael Nicholson Prize for best doctoral thesis in International Studies.

Before my PhD, I studied International Relations in Germany at the FU Berlin, the HU Berlin, and the University of Potsdam, and Social Sciences and History at the University of Erfurt in Germany.


POL251 International Relations Theory

POL358 US Foreign Policy

POLM040/075 Themes and Cases in US Foreign Policy


Research Interests:

My research interests revolve around the interaction of security and identity, discourse, narrative and practice, and the role of the everyday in shaping politics, with my research broadly located at the intersection of International Relations (IR) and Critical Security Studies (CSS), while I also incorporate insights from adjacent fields such as political communication, political psychology, or critical geopolitics into my work. I am interested, how particular identity discourses and security narratives emerge as dominant in the political and public sphere, and how processes of identity formation and meaning making enable or constrain policy choices and provoke resistance against existing political hegemonies. Empirically, a particular focus of my research is on US foreign and security policy.

My current research project explores the interlinkage of populism and security and its impact on voter mobilization and the legitimation of policies in the United States under the Trump presidency and its aftermath. My forthcoming monograph with Routledge, The Politics of Antagonism introduces the analytical framework of a populist security imaginary in this context. The book advances the study of populism and ontological security in International Relations by linking the critical analysis of identity performing discourses and security narratives to emotive appeals and psychological effects aimed at specific target audiences and their underlying cultural attitudes, social orientation and political values. The critical analysis of the content of political communication under the Trump presidency focuses on the psychological and affective modes of political persuasion utilized by populist security narratives in their representation of political and social reality, and how blame attribution, appeals to collective narcissism, and an affective repertoire of fear, anxiety, humiliation, resentment and nostalgia were employed for the purposes of voter mobilization and the legitimation of policy. A second research project deals with the impact of Zeitenwende, the strategic turnaround in German foreign, security and defence policy in response to the Russo-Ukrainian war, especially in regard to its significance for transatlantic relations.

My previous research monograph, American Grand Strategy Under Obama (EUP, 2017) examined competing discourses of American grand strategy, national security, and geopolitical identity under the Obama presidency. The book explores how the Obama Doctrine posed an internal challenge to the established elite consensus of American exceptionalism and liberal hegemony by emphasising military restraint and 'leading from behind'. From an in-depth analysis of various competing popular, formal and practical discourses of national security and foreign policy, the book concludes that American grand strategy under Obama no longer represented a coherent and consistent equation of material resources and political ends, but a contested discursive space. 

Examples of research funding:

Leverhulme Trust: Early Career Fellowship (2018-2021)

Institute of Advanced Studies (University of Warwick): Early Career Fellowship (2014-2015).

Nominated for Warwick University Award for Teaching Excellence (2023).

Nominated for Michael Nicholson Prize for best doctoral thesis in International Studies (2016).

Nominated for Warwick University Staff Award for Outstanding Contribution to the University (2016).


Single-authored research monographs:

Georg Löfflmann, The Politics of Antagonism: The Populist Security Imaginary and the Remaking of Political Identity (Routledge, forthcoming).

Georg Löfflmann, American Grand Strategy under Obama: Competing Discourses (Edinburgh University Press, 2017).

Georg Löfflmann, Verteidigung am Hindukusch - Die Zivilmacht Deutschland und der Krieg in Afghanistan (Diplomica, 2008)

Peer-reviewed journal articles:

Georg Löfflmann, ‘The Bush Doctrine redux: changes and continuities in American grand strategy since ‘9/11’.’ International Politics (2023).

Alexandra Homolar and Georg Löfflmann), ‘Weaponizing Masculinity: Populism and Gendered Stories of Victimhood.’ Journal for the Study of Radicalism vol. 16, no. 2 (2022): 131-148.

Georg Löfflmann, ‘Introduction: The Study of Populism in International Relations.’ British Journal of Politics and International Relations vol. 24, no. 3 (2022): 403–415.

Georg Löfflmann, ‘‘Enemies of the People’: Donald Trump and the Security Imaginary of America First.’ British Journal of Politics and International Relations vol. 24, no. 3 (2022): 543–560.

Alexandra Homolar and Georg Löfflmann, ‘Populism and the Affective Politics of Humiliation Narratives.’ Global Studies Quarterly vol. 1, no. 1 (2021): 1-11. (Quoted in Thomas B. Edsall, ‘Why Trump Is Still Their Guy,’ New York Times, 21 April 2021). 

Georg Löfflmann, ‘From the Obama Doctrine to America First: The erosion of the Washington consensus on grand strategy,’ International Politics vol. 57, no. 4 (2020): 588-605.

Georg Löfflmann, ‘America First and the Populist Impact on US Foreign Policy,’ Survival vol. 61, no. 6 (2019): 115-138.

Georg Löfflmann, ‘The Obama Doctrine and Military Intervention,’ Perceptions: Journal of International Affairs vol. 24, no. 1 (Spring-Summer 2019): 59-82.

Georg Löfflmann and Nick-Vaughan-Williams, ‘Vernacular Imaginaries of Border Security in Europe,’ European Journal of International Security vol. 3, no. 3 (2018): 382-400.

Georg Löfflmann, ‘The Pivot between Containment, Engagement and Restraint – President Obama’s conflicted Grand Strategy in Asia.’ Asian Security vol. 12, no. 2 (2016): 92-110.

Georg Löfflmann, ‘Leading from Behind – American exceptionalism and President Obama’s post-American vision of hegemony.’ Geopolitics vol. 20, no. 2 (2015): 308-332.

Georg Löfflmann, ‘Hollywood, the Pentagon and the Cinematic Production of National Security.’ Critical Studies on Security vol. 1, no. 3 (2013): 280-295.

Book chapters and other academic publications:

Rubrick Biegon, Georg Löfflmann, Amy M Skonieczny, ‘The Trump Shock: Populism and Changing Narratives of US Foreign Policy’ in P. Giurlando and D. Wajner (eds.) Populist Foreign Policy: Regional Perspectives of Populism in the International Scene (Palgrave-Macmillan, 2023): 117-145.

Georg Löfflmann and Malte Riemann (eds.), Deutschlands Verteidigungspolitik: Nationale Sicherheit nach der Zeitenwende (Kohlhammer, 2023).

Georg Löfflmann, ‘American Grand Strategy in Asia’ in W. Aslam, N. Nymalm, and O. Turner (eds.) Routledge Handbook on US Foreign Policy in the Indo-Pacific (Routledge, 2022): 35-38.

Georg Löfflmann and Nick Vaughan-Williams, ‘Narrating Identity, Border Security, and Migration: Critical Focus Groups and the Everyday as Problematic,’ Critical Studies on Security, Vol. 5, no. 2 (2017): pp. 207-211.   

Corina Lacatus, Gustav Meibauer, and Georg Löfflmann (eds.), Populism, Political Communication and Performative Leadership in International Politics (Palgrave-Macmillan, forthcoming).

Op-eds, book reviews, etc.:

Georg Löfflmann, ‘Germany’s military muddle over Ukraine.’ The Spectator, 24 April 2022. 

Georg Löfflmann, ‘The German army has far bigger problems than funding.’ The Spectator, 20 March 2022. 

Georg Löfflmann, ‘Ending America’s Uncivil War.’ The World Today, April/May 2021. (Quoted in Jamie Dettmer ‘Biden's Initial Steps to Repair Global Ties Receive Praise in Europe, Asia,’ Voice of America, 27 April 2021).

Georg Löfflmann, ‘America First and the Pandemic: Trump’s Strategy of Blaming China.’ Observer Research Foundation (ORF), 17 June 2020.

Georg Löfflmann, ‘Washington’s foreign policy consensus fell apart long before Donald Trump.’ The Conversation, 15 August 2017.

Georg Löfflmann and Nick Vaughan-Williams, ‘European citizens want information on migration – not higher walls.’ The Conversation, 3 August 2017.

Georg Löfflmann, ‘America and the politics of insecurity. By Andrew Rojecki.’ International Affairs Vol. 93, no. 2 (2017): 512. 511-512.

Georg Löfflmann, ‘Pulling Germany's Military Back from the Brink.’ The National Interest, 16 September 2015 


US Foreign Policy, US National Security, Critical Security Studies, International Security

Public Engagement

Multiple TV and radio appearances commenting on US foreign policy and national security, American politics, and international affairs: BBC News, Sky News, France 24, CNBC, Al Jazeera, Deutsche Welle, TRT World, Indus News TV, tbs radio Seoul, LBC radio, and local BBC radio.  

Expert commentary for: The Times, Financial Times, RND (Germany), Handelsblatt (Germany) L'Orient Le Jour (Lebanon), Telemundo (Spain).

Op-eds for: The Conversation, The Spectator, The National Interest.

Podcast appearances: Duckcalls (Duck of Minerva podcast), hosted by Jarrod Hayes,  ‘Zeitenwende? German foreign policy after Ukraine’ (10 May 2022) with Frank Stengel, Kiel University; poLit podcast, hosted by Kieran O'Meara, episode 17 ‘Populism and Populist Foreign Policy’ (25 May 2021).

British Council

Observer Research Foundation


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