It is important for us to ask not only why and how actors conduct hybrid threats, but also to ask what about the target enables them to do so. What are the vulnerabilities in society that makes us potentially susceptible to hybrid threats?
Christian Kongstad — an erstwhile graduate student at the Centre for Peace Studies (CPS) at UiT The Arctic University of Norway — elucidated the relevance of governance and social capital to a society’s vulnerability and susceptibility to hybrid threats in his dissertation. By using the concepts of hybrid threats, together with governance and social capital in the aspect of democracy, his thesis analysed the conflict in Crimea and Ukraine since 2014. The analytical framework from the Multinational Capability Development Campaign (MCDC) report was used as the main framework for understanding hybrid threats.
The thesis concluded with a set of questions as a guideline for how to assess a society’s governance and social capital situation. The questions may give an idea of the situation, which can then be used as a baseline assessment, contributing to the MCDC-report’s analytical framework to expose a society’s possible vulnerabilities and subsequent susceptibility towards hybrid threats.
Kongstad’s research can be found here:
The relevance of governance and social capital to understanding hybrid threats.