Anette Stimmer
  • KY16 9AX

    United Kingdom

Accepting Postgraduate Research Students

Personal profile

Research overview

I study how normative beliefs shape foreign policy decision-making, and how decision-makers shape norms and international law on international security issues in international organizations.  My research is interdisciplinary and uses a variety of methodological approaches.
My first research interest relates to how states implement and contest norms. I am in the final stages of turning my dissertation, Norm Contestation in International Politics, into a monograph. Cambridge University Press (CUP) has fully accepted the book project. My book focuses on contestation in the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) over transnational security problems and human rights in the post-Cold War era. Based on content-analysis and elite interviews, I identify how states overcame their normative differences and what led to impasses. I find that which norm element is contested and whether in-group members support contested interpretations affects the duration of norm contestation. Material power is not sufficient to resolve norm contestation: a trustworthy image and arguments based on beneficial consequences are key. I also develop a typology of norm contestation outcomes and their implications for norm strength. My dissertation was awarded best dissertation prizes in IR from the PSA and Oxford University. Different International Studies Association (ISA) sections awarded a paper on my outcome typology a pre-PhD prize and an honorable mention. International Studies Quarterly published the paper in 2019.
My second research interest relates to how norms shape decision-making, particularly in the House of Commons and the United Nations. In my second big project, Jess Gliserman and I contributed a conceptual distinction between norms and (moral) principles that enables us to disentangle their influence on decision-makers. We use insights from moral convictions research, and thus a subjective, or actor-centric, definition of morality. Methodologically, this research relies on surveys. We adapted it for use in qualitative elite interviews. In our 2022 European Journal of International Relations article, we apply this framework to the September 2019 Brexit rebellion, for which material self-interest was an unlikely motive. Based on interviews with British Members of Parliament (MPs) and text analysis, we identify that social norms channel and constrain morality and its consequences, such as intolerance towards those with opposing views. I am currently working on a follow-on project, which differentiates between different kinds of normativity - norms, personal beliefs and objective normative codes - and provides insights into how they interact in US and UK foreign-policy decision-making.

My third research interest relates to decision-making in international organizations. I have started to study informal rules in IOs and their impact on decision-making. I am working on an article about drafting privileges in the UNSC and African Union (AU) with Nicole De Silva of Concordia University. This paper explores why not all states are interested in drafting resolutions and treaties given that research has found that penholders can significantly shape the content and acceptance of legal documents.

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, International Relations, University of Oxford

Award Date: 1 Nov 2019

External positions

Associate Member, Nuffield College, University of Oxford

27 Nov 202326 Nov 2026


Dive into the research topics where Anette Stimmer is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
  • 1 Similar Profiles