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Eitan Oren is Teaching Fellow at the Japan Programme/Department of War Studies. Previously, he was a Research Associate at the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (Tokyo). He holds a PhD in International Relations from the University of Tokyo. Oren’s research interests lie at the intersection of international security and the human mind.

Over the past decade, he has examined when, why, and how different people (civilian leaders, defense personnel, citizens) – embedded in different national, socio-economic and cultural contexts – perceive security threats. The results of this research have been published in the International Relations of the Asia-Pacific, Japanese Journal of Political Science, Risk and East Asia, Foreign Affairs, Journal of Cold War Studies (forthcoming), and the Australian Journal of International Affairs.

His current research project investigates how different people infer the intensity of different external security threats by relying on the building blocks of human cognition, including space, time, and causality.

Oren is a member of ISA and BISA.


Research Interests

Using quantitative and qualitative text analysis, and drawing on insights from conceptual semantics (Ray Jackendoff 2007, 2012, 2019; Steven Pinker 2007; Jerry Hobbs 2019), and philosophy of mind (Daniel Dennett 1996, 2017), as well as on the work of IR scholars such as Janice G. Stein, Robert Jervis, and Richard Ned Lebow, Oren is keen to enhance our understanding of the micro-foundations underlying threat perception in the context of international relations.

  • Threat Perception in International Relations
  • Political Psychology
  • Cold War History in East Asia
  • Contemporary East-Asian Security (Japan Focus)
  • Textual Analysis (NVivo, Wordsmith)



Recent Articles:

  • Eitan Oren, "Japan’s evolving threat perception: data from diet deliberations 1946–2017," International Relations of the Asia-Pacific, 2019.
  • Eitan Oren and Matthew Brummer. “States Don’t Perceive Threat, People Do: Reexamining Threat Perception in Early Cold-War Japan,” Journal of Cold War Studies, MIT Press, forthcoming 2020.
  • Eitan Oren & Matthew Brummer, "Threat perception, government centralization, and political instrumentality in Abe Shinzo’s Japan," Australian Journal of International Affairs, 2020.



Oren currently teaches on the following modules:

  • International Relations Theory (BA1)
  • War and Strategy in East Asia (BA2)
  • Japan and East Asian Security (BA3)
  • War and International Order (BA2)


Dr Eitan Oren PURE Profile