© 2020

Global Challenges in Maritime Security

An Introduction

  • Lisa Otto

Table of contents

About this book


From pirates to smugglers, migrants to hackers, from stolen fish to smuggled drugs, the sea is becoming a place of increasing importance on the global agenda as criminals use it as a theatre to conduct their crimes unfettered. This volume sets out to provide an introduction to the key issues of pertinence in Maritime Security today. It demonstrates why the sea is a space of great strategic importance, and how threats to security at sea have a real impact for people around the world. It examines an array of challenges and threats to security playing out at sea, including illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, irregular migration, piracy, smuggling of illicit goods, and cyber security, while also looking at some of the mechanism and role-players involved in addressing these perils. Each chapter provides an overview of the issue it discusses and provides a brief case study to illustrate how this issue is playing out in real-life. This book thus allows readers an insight into this evolving multidisciplinary field of study. As such, it makes for an informative read for academics and practitioners alike, as well as policymakers and students, offering a well-rounded introduction of the main issues in current Maritime Security.


Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing Fisheries Crime Human Trafficking Maritime Boundary Disputes Port Security Maritime crime prevention Security at sea Cyber security at sea Piracy at sea Maritime terrorism

Editors and affiliations

  • Lisa Otto
    • 1
  1. 1.SARChI Chair: African Diplomacy and Foreign PolicyUniversity of JohannesburgAuckland ParkSouth Africa

About the editors

Lisa Otto gained her PhD in Political Studies from the University of Johannesburg in 2016 and holds a MA in International Peace and Security from King’s College London’s War Studies Department. Presently working as a Senior Researcher / Lecturer at the NRF-SARChI Chair in African Diplomacy and Foreign Policy at the University of Johannesburg, Lisa was previously employed at Coventry University, where she was responsible for teaching on the world’s only MA specifically in Maritime Security. She has worked in think tanks and political risk institutions. Otto has specialised in issues affecting Africa, particularly those related to conflict, security and foreign affairs. Her research interests have largely revolved around non-traditional threats to security, where she has developed specific expertise in the emerging field of Maritime Security. 

Bibliographic information


“Otto’s edited volume is a useful handbook for scholars and students of maritime security and one of the very first publications on the expanded field. … this book represents a significant contribution to the recent scholarly discussion of maritime security and successfully raises awareness of the maritime domain as a global challenge in the twenty-first century.” (Edward Sing Yue Chan, Global Change, Peace & Security, August 21, 2020)