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Raphael is a PhD candidate at the Department of War Studies, born in Campinas, Brazil. He received his MSc. in International Relations from the Interinstitutional Program San Tiago Dantas (São Paulo State University, Campinas State University and PUC-SP) in 2015; and received his bachelor’s degree in International Relations from São Paulo State University in 2012.

He has experience in the Brazilian government in National Defence, Policy Research, and Scenario Planning. Raphael worked as a Technical Advisor for National Defence at the Secretary of Strategic Affairs of the Brazilian Presidency (SAE/PR); as a Researcher at the governmental think tank Institute for Applied Economic Research (Ipea); and as a Research Coordinator at the Center for Strategic Studies of the Brazilian Army (CEEEx).

He currently is a researcher at King’s Brazil Institute and at the Military in Politics in Brazil Research Network. This research network aims to unite scholars interested in providing an interdisciplinary understanding of the evolution of the Brazilian military.

Raphael also holds a PhD fellowship from Fundação Estudar—a national foundation aiming to support youth leaders to develop their careers and become effective agents of change in Brazil. In the past, he had scholarships and research grants from Brazil’s most important research foundations, such as the São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP), National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq), and the Coordination for the Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES).


Theis title: Diffusing military power to contemporary South America: the army transformation paradigm in Brazil, Chile, and Colombia

His doctoral thesis aims to understand why and how the South American states adopted the contemporary army organisation paradigm. The study analyses how Brazil, Chile, and Colombia, adopted these new practices, technologies, and structures during their army transformations since the late 2000s. These armies operate in a very distinct environment from that of NATO. South America is a region with significant non-military security challenges, like organised crime, social violence, and substantial development problems. South American armies try to modernise while having a troubled civil-military relation environment--with civilian neglect in defence affairs and a history of military intervention in politics-- and facing a growing civilian push to operate inward in support of public safety. Yet, all these armies try to adopt a set of modern warfare military innovations based on self-sufficient and rapidly deployable brigade-level military organisations, capability-based planning, netcentric warfare, precision-guided munitions, and effects-based operations.

The study aims to understand why and how these armies tried to innovate during their military transformation processes. I expect to understand the dynamics of military reform in these armed forces and obtain insights into the intraregional diffusion of army models to South America and these military reforms' social and political outcomes.

Research interests

  • Military diffusion and innovation
  • Defence reform
  • Civil-military relations
  • National security
  • Security sector governance
  • Security and defence in Latin America
  • Brazilian foreign policy
  • Scenario-planning

PhD supervision


Peer review publications

Lima, R. C., P. F. Silva, and G. Rudzit (2020). ‘No power vacuum: National security neglect and the defence sector in Brazil’. Defence Studies.

Lima, R. C. (2019), ‘Strategic Communications as a Tool for Great Power Competition in Venezuela’. Defence Strategic Communications, v. 6.

Books edited

Andrade, I. O., V. L. Lange, O. Medeiros Filho and R. C. Lima (eds.) (2019). Contemporary Challenges to the Brazilian Army. [In Portuguese].

Book chapters

Lima and Medeiros Filho (2019), ‘The Role of the Brazilian Army in Brazil’s Security Sector: implications for National Defence and the Armed Forces’. In: Andrade, I. O., V. L. Lange, O. M. Medeiros Filho and R. C. Lima (eds.). Contemporary Challenges to the Brazilian Army. [In Portuguese]

Andrade and Lima (2018), Security and National Defence in Brazilian Borders’. In: Pêgo and Rosa (eds.), ‘Fronteiras do Brasil: uma avaliação de política pública – Volume 1’. [In Portuguese]

Andrade, I. O. and R. C. Lima (2018), Strategic Partnerships and the Defence Technology Agenda: the case of the Brazil-Sweden Partnership. In: Desiderá Neto, Florencio, Ramanzini Junior, and Silva Filho (eds.). Brazilian Foreign Policy in Debate: dimensions and strategies for international insertion in the post-2008 crisis [In Portuguese]

Reports and other studies

Institute for Applied Economic Research (2017). Brasil 2035: Scenarios for national development. Brasilia: Ipea.

Lima, R. C. (2017), ‘The Future of Brazilian International Insertion: questions for national development until 2035’. Texto para Discussão IPEA. [in Portuguese]

Lima, R. C. and M. P. F. Curado (2017), ‘The Future of the State in Brazil and its implications on society: Questions for National Development until 2035. Texto para Discussão IPEA. [in Portuguese]  

Further details

See Raphael's research profile