BA, MA x 2, PhD, AIL, FRUSI
Director; Professor of Maritime Security
Greenwich Maritime Institute
Professor Chris Bellamy joined the University of Greenwich as Director of the Maritime Institute and Professor of Maritime Security in September 2010. He was previously Director of the Security Studies Institute and Professor of Military Science and Doctrine at Cranfield University and academic provider to the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom at Shrivenham (1997–2010).
At Cranfield, Chris designed, implemented and ran the MSc iGlobal Security (1997–2010) and the MSc International Security by distance learning (2007–10).
His most recent major works are Crete 1897-1909: the first Modern International Peace Support Operation (2013), The Gurkhas: Special Force (John Murray, 2011), which has also been made into an audio book, and Absolute War (Pan/Macmillan, 2007), which won the Westminster Medal for Military Literature in 2008 and has been translated and published in Italian, Spanish, Polish, Czech and Estonian. Earlier works include Knights in White Armour: the New Art of War and Peace (Hutchinson 1996, Pimlico 1997) which addressed the radical changes taking place in international security following the end of the Cold War.
Chris is unusual among academics in his field in having practical experience of war, having been Defence Correspondent of the Independent newspaper from 1990–97. He reported from the 1991 Gulf War, from Bosnia between 1991 and 1996, and from Chechnya in 1995. He was shortlisted for Foreign Reporter of the Year in the British Press Awards 1996 for reporting from Chechnya.
Chris completed his PhD at Edinburgh from 1987–90 on The Russian and Soviet View of Future War and participated in the Edinburgh Conversations under his supervisor Professor John Erickson. He had served for four years in the British regular army and for nine in the UK Ministry of Defence where his postings included three with the Royal Navy and three with the RAF, including a spell with the Directorate of Naval Plans during the 1982 Falklands War.
During his career he worked closely with Professor John Erickson and Professor Richard Holmes, both of whom have unfortunately passed away, and with Professor Caroline Kennedy, Chair in War Studies at the University of Hull.
Responsibilities within the university
- Leadership and management of the Greenwich Maritime Institute, and general oversight of all post-doctoral research fellows, research and Masters programmes and students within it
- Programme Director, MSc in Maritime Security
- Member of University Research Ethics, Research Degrees and Research and Enterprise Committees.
- 2008: Royal United Services Institute, Westminster Medal for Military Literature
- Fellow, Royal United Services Institute
- Member, International Institute of Strategic Studies
- Member of editorial boards:
- Civil Wars (ISSN 1369-8249 [print], 1743-968X [online]);
- Journal of Slavic Military Studies (ISSN 1351-8046 [print] and 1556-3006 [online]).
Professor Bellamy's research interests focus on maritime security, especially piracy, maritime terrorism and other forms of maritime crime, and the sea and environmental and energy security. As Director of GMI, he is determined to drive its research beyond maritime history, policy, sociology and economics to expand knowledge and understanding in these areas. His background is in the field of defence, strategic and security studies, and as a fluent Russian speaker he has devoted much of his career to studying Russian military history and affairs.
His most distinctive contribution to this field has been a series of works highlighting the continuity in Russian military and security perceptions and doctrine, spanning pre-Revolutionary, Soviet and post-1992 periods, and he has established clearly documented links connecting Russian military 'style' with the Mongol suzerainty of the 13th to 15th centuries.His other distinctive contribution to his field is his use of maps, diagrams and graphic representations to better explain trends and ideas, exemplified by his consulting editorship of The Times Atlas of the Second World War (1989) and associate editorship of The Oxford Companion to Military History (2001). Additional examples can be found in his other books and articles, especially Crete 1897-1909 (2013), The Gurkhas (2011), Absolute War (2007), Knights in White Armour (1996) and The Evolution of Modern Land Warfare: Theory and Practice (1990).
Recent funded projects
As Director of the Greenwich Maritime Institute, Chris has been associated with a number of funded research projects undertaken by his staff.
Bellamy, Chris (2012) Soviet Union in WWII.
Bellamy, Chris (2011) Maritime piracy: return of the world's second-oldest security problem.
Bellamy, Chris (2011) The Gurkhas: Special Force.