Personnel security clearance and transnational ties

Led by Jørgen Carling
Mar 2016 - Dec 2016

A core aspect of national security is the protection of classified information, especially from foreign powers. Consequently, security clearance of persons with close ties to other nations raises particular concerns. Such individuals might, for instance, have multiple loyalties or be particularly vulnerable to extortion. At the same time, a growing proportion of the population in many countries has transnational ties. To exclude people from important work on the basis of their transnational connections would deprive government organizations of valuable competence and go against societal values of equality and inclusion. Such dilemmas represent practical challenges for organizations that carry out personnel security clearances. This project seeks to strengthen the foundations for addressing these challenges. It draws upon research about transnational ties and multiple belongings, and especially on the simultaneity of migrant transnationalism and integration, which may lead to an array of differing outcomes, but need not present a conflict of loyalties. ​

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