Dr George Kyris

Dr George Kyris

Department of Political Science and International Studies
Associate Professor in International Politics

Contact details

Department of Political Science and International Studies
School of Government
Muirhead Tower
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT


  • PhD in Politics, University of Manchester, 2011
  • MA in International Relations, University of Manchester, 2007
  • PG Certificate in Academic Practice/ Higher Education Academy Fellow (2018)


I joined the department of POLSIS in 2014 and in 2016 I was awarded a Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellowship with a project on international organisations, conflict and sovereignty. Before, I was a Research Fellow at the LSE and taught at the Universities of Warwick and Manchester, where I completed my PhD in 2011.



Postgraduate supervision

I would welcome PhD applications in areas related to my research interests below, and I would encourage potential supervisees to get in touch:

- international conflict, conflict management and resolution
- international organisations, the European Union
- state recognition
- statehood, sovereignty
- secession
- unrecognised/ de facto states


My research agenda lies at the intersection of IR theory, security and global governance. My expertise is on state recognition and international organisations, especially in the context of conflicts over statehood, unrecognised state, and the European Union. Emanating from this, I am also interested in state theory and sovereignty debates.


Selected projects/ awards:

* Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellowship (2017-2020): This programme explores the role of international organisations (such as the UN, EU, OSCE, AU or ASEAN) in mostly secessionist conflicts that have produced unrecognised states, i.e. state builders that lack international recognition. Methodologically, it combines the development of typologies of (a) recognition and (b) approaches of international organisations towards unrecognised states with more in-depth process tracing of the ways in which recognition influences approaches of interntional organisations in selected cases of unrecognised states. The programme offers missing findings on the ways in which sovereignty and recognition shape the role of international organisations globally and makes a contribution to a state-centric academic and policy discussion.

* 'The International Dimensions of Unilateral Secession' (co-organised with Dr V Axyonova), EISA Workshops on International Relations (2019).
* 'Dealing with Conflict' University of Birmingham- PRIO Workshop (2018): Together with the Peace Research Institute Oslo and supported by the Internationalisation Fund of the School of Government, I organised a policy-engagement workshop in the Cyprus UN buffer zone, which invited local stakeholders, like the European Commission and the UN, to learn how to deal with the Cyprus conflict from academics working on similar conflicts. Building on the success of the event, more workshops were organised in other conflict-affected areas (Georgia 2018, Kosovo 2019)
* 'Sovereignties of Birmingham', Being Human Festival (2017): Worked with local communities and school pupils on a set of public discussions on sovereignty and what it means to Birmingham, its people and landscape. The events took place in local sites that are important for the history of sovereignt and included themed history walks locally.
* 'Understanding Migration Through Film' (2017): This event was supported by the Alumni Impact Award of the College of Social Sciences and included a screening of the documentary ‘Refugee Highway’ and a discussion on migration with the award-winning filmmaker, Chronis Pehlivanidis, NGO members, students and staff of the University of Birmingham.
* LSE Hellenic Observatory and Neapolis University Post-Doctoral Fellow (2013): The Fellowship built on my PhD research and expanded on the role of the EU in the Cyprus conflict and lessons that can be drawn for similar conflicts between groups that are in the process of integrating more with the EU (e.g. Kosovo).

Other activities


Highlight publications

Kyris, G 2022, 'State recognition and dynamic sovereignty', European Journal of International Relations, vol. 28, no. 2, pp. 287-311. https://doi.org/10.1177/13540661221077441

Kyris, G 2015, The Europeanisation of Contested Statehood: The EU in Northern Cyprus. Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315558479

Kyris, G & Luciano, B 2021, 'Collective recognition and regional parliaments: navigating statehood conflict', Global Studies Quarterly, vol. 1, no. 3, ksab011. https://doi.org/10.1093/isagsq/ksab011

Kyris, G 2018, 'Sovereignty and engagement without recognition: explaining the failure of conflict resolution in Cyprus', Ethnopolitics, vol. 17, no. 4, pp. 426-442. https://doi.org/10.1080/17449057.2018.1495364

Recent publications


Kyris, G 2018, 'The European Union in Northern Cyprus: conceptualising the avoidance of contested states', Geopolitics. https://doi.org/10.1080/14650045.2018.1552945

Kyris, G & Bouris, D 2017, 'Europeanisation, Sovereignty and Contested States: the European Union in Palestine and northern Cyprus', British Journal of Politics and International Relations, vol. 19, no. 4. https://doi.org/10.1177/1369148117727534

Kyris, G & Christou, G 2017, 'The impact of the Eurozone crisis on national foreign policy: enhancing Europeanisation in the case of Cyprus', Journal of Common Market Studies. https://doi.org/10.1111/jcms.12557.

Kyris, G 2015, 'Europeanization and ‘Internalized’ conflicts: the case of Cyprus', European Foreign Affairs Review, vol. 20, no. 1, pp. 83-96. <http://www.kluwerlawonline.com/abstract.php?area=Journals&id=EERR2015006>

Kyris, G 2015, 'The Fifth Greek Presidency of the Council of the European Union: The Most Unlikely Captain?', Journal of Common Market Studies, vol. 53, no. S1, pp. 75-82. https://doi.org/10.1111/jcms.12268

Kyris, G 2014, 'A model of ‘contested’ Europeanization: The European Union and the Turkish-Cypriot administration', Comparative European Politics, vol. 12, no. 2, pp. 160-183. https://doi.org/10.1057/cep.2012.39

Kyris, G 2013, 'Europeanization beyond contested statehood: the European Union and Turkish-Cypriot civil society', Journal of Common Market Studies, vol. 51, no. 5, pp. 866-883. https://doi.org/10.1111/jcms.12035

Kyris, G 2012, 'Europeanization and the Turkish–Cypriot Political Parties: How Europe Matters', Turkish Studies, vol. 13, no. 3, pp. 471-487. https://doi.org/10.1080/14683849.2012.717446

Chapter (peer-reviewed)

Kyris, G 2019, Sovereignty and Engagement without Recognition. in J Ker-Lindsay & E Berg (eds), The Politics of International Interaction with De Facto States. Routledge.

Kyris, G 2014, The European Union, Turkey and the Cyprus problem: the failure of a catalyst. in F Cengiz & L Hoffmann (eds), Turkey and the European Union : Facing New Challenges and Opportunities. Routledge.

Kyris, G 2014, Why and How the EU Still Matters for the Cyprus Problem. in J Kerr-Lindsay (ed.), Resolving Cyprus. I.B. Tauris, London.

Other contribution

Kyris, G 2020, International Organizations and Statehood Conflicts. Palgrave. <https://link.springer.com/referenceworkentry/10.1007/978-3-030-11795-5_155-1>

Kyris, G 2020, Statehood Conflicts. Palgrave. <https://link.springer.com/referenceworkentry/10.1007/978-3-030-11795-5_154-1>

View all publications in research portal


  • International Conflict 
  • International organisations, particularly European Union politics
  • Greece, Turkey, Cyprus

Languages and other information

Media availability in spoken and written English and Greek.

Media experience

Dr Kyris has extensive media experience. He has been invited to comment for international and regional media, such as the BBC Website, Radio and TV on a variety of international and European issues, including conflict, the Eurozone crisis and the centenary of World War One. He is a regular contributor to the Guardian and the Conversation and has also written for policy platforms like LSE BlogsManchester Policy Blogs or the Greek Politics Specialist Group and for leading European news agencies, like Euractiv and EUObserver.

Policy experience

Dr Kyris' regularly engage with policy-makers. Examples of major recent activities include: 

- In 2018 and supported by the School of Government Internationalisation Fund, Dr Kyris co-organised with the Peace Research Institute Oslo a policy-engagement workshop in the Cyprus UN buffer zone (2018) on lessons for the Cyprus conflict. Building on the success of the event, more workshops were organised in other conflict-affected areas (Georgia 2018, Kosovo 2019).   

- In 2018, Dr Kyris took part in a University of Birmingham- OSCE Workshop on Security & Economic Connectivity and contributor to the OSCE report (2018)

In 2015, Dr Kyris' evidence was selected by the House of Lords EU External Affairs Sub-Committee.

In 2014, Dr Kyris' evidence was included in the UK Foreign Office Review of Balance of Competences, the 'most extensive analysis of EU action ever taken by a member state'.

Dr Kyris has also been a Country Expert for the Varieties of Democracy project, University of Gothenburg and has contributed to the European Council on Foreign Relations Scoreboard 2015.