12. March 2024

Play Money? Digital Currencies, Crypto, and International Security

Open seminar by Professor Marc Lanteigne. Tuesday, 19 March, from 16:00 to 17:00 in Lögberg 101, University of Iceland.

With the world of finance and trade fast becoming an arena for global competition, cryptocurrencies are now more commonly viewed as a security concern, especially as economic differences between Western and non-Western economies become more pronounced.

With great powers openly discussing the decoupling of their financial systems and the role of crypto as a form of political resistance amongst other states, virtual currencies must be placed under greater strategic scrutiny. As well, as a response to the anarchic nature of cryptocurrencies, some countries have begun to experiment extensively with government-backed ‘central bank digital currencies’ not only for potential economic gains but also as a form of protection against outside interference. For the past decade, China has developed a digital renminbi to boost commerce both within the country and along the Belt and Road.

All of these developments can be seen as a result of weaponized interdependence, whereby economic links are seen as vulnerabilities rather than goods. How has Europe responded to these challenges, and what still needs to be done?

Marc Lanteigne is a Professor of Political Science at the University of Tromsø: The Arctic University of Norway. His research interests include China and East Asia foreign policy, China’s engagement and cooperation with regional and international organisations, Sino-European and Sino-Arctic relations, and trade politics in China’s commercial diplomacy. He is the author of China and International Institutions: Alternate Paths to Global Power (2005) and Chinese Foreign Policy: An Introduction (2020), as well as numerous articles and chapters on Chinese domestic and international politics.

The seminar will take place in English and is open to all.

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