I am Nathalie, a Belgian internet night crawler with an interest in the digital society.
I first obtained my BA and MA in Political Science at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, specialising in drone warfare. I wrote the following paper based on my thesis during a fellowship at the Rome-based Instituto de Affari International. This was quoted in a New York Times article on Europe’s role in the US’ drone warfare in Pakistan.
I then gained an LLM on the Law and Politics of International Security in 2013 at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, specializing in cyberwarfare. For a summary of this research, see this video where I presented my thesis at NATO’s CCD COE’s CyCon conference.
I have been actively involved in the cybersecurity field since. I worked at the national CERT on cyber awareness and at the national cybersecurity centre of Belgium on capacity building. After a brief stint in the private sector, I became an associate analyst at the EU Institute for Security Studies where I provided research support for the EU’s cyberdiplomacy’s endeavours. This position allowed me to analyse cybersecurity from a geopolitical level. I wrote up some insights and outputs from my time at the EUISS. Since March 2021, I am a full-time doctoral researcher at the Vrije Universiteit Brussels, where I am connected to IMEC-SMIT and the Brussels School of Governance, and am an affiliate researcher at the Hannah Arendt Institute. My doctoral research titled “Prevention of securitization of contentious content through architectural interventions on online platform” will focus on platform governance, the organic spread of misinformation and online radicalisation.
I very much enjoy being a transdisciplinary scholar of all security things related to the internet and often go in several direction in this field. This website mostly contains my (less academic) trains of thought that were boiling inside of me and I had to get rid of somewhere. Publications, press and expert commentary can be found on my Pure profile page of the university (if I manage to update it…).
As a globetrotting social creature, I used to blog a lot during travels, often less about locations and more about perceptions and experience. While these posts perhaps do not make my blog seem very professional, these travels have significantly shaped my perspectives on conflict and society. I therefore still hold them in this space, exposing some of my private life and thoughts to whoever feels like wasting time reading my young (and sometimes naive) backpacking adventures.
To connect with me, follow me on twitter!