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Dr Kristina Spohr, Associate Professor

Research and Publications

Dr Spohr's main research interests lie in the International History of Germany since 1945, twentieth-century Baltic and Finnish history in the international context; post-Cold War security developments (especially NATO).

Her published books include Germany and the Baltic problem after the Cold War: The development of a new Ostpolitik, 1989-2000 (London: Routledge, 2004); (as editor and contributor) Building Sustainable and Effective Capabilities: A Systemic Comparison of Professional and Conscript Forces (Amsterdam: IOS Press, 2004); (as co-editor and contributor) JCH Special Issue: At the Crossroads of Past and Present — ‘Contemporary’ History and the Historical Discipline (London: Sage – vol. 46, 3 (2011)).

Dr Spohr has written a number of scholarly articles, including : 'German Unification: Between official history, academic scholarship, and political memoirs', Historical Journal 43, 3 (2000); (with Ryan Hendrickson) 'From the Baltic to the Black sea: Bush's NATO enlargement', White House Studies 4, 3 (2004); 'Between political rhetoric and realpolitik calculations: Western diplomacy and Baltic struggle for independence in the Cold War Endgame', Cold War History 6, 1 (2006); 'National interests and the power of "language": West German diplomacy and the Conference on security and cooperation in Europe, 1972-1975', Journal of Strategic Studies 29, 6 (2006); 'The Baltic Question in West German politics, 1949-1990', Journal of Baltic Studies 39, 2 (2007); ‘Germany and the politics of the neutron bomb, 1975-1979’, Diplomacy & Statecraft, 21, 2 (2010); 'Speaking Truth to Power: Contemporary History in the Twenty-first Century'|, Journal of Contemporary History 46, 3 (2011); 'Contemporary History in Europe: From Mastering National Pasts to the Future of Writing the World'|, Journal of Contemporary History 46, 3 (2011); 'Conflict and cooperation in intra-alliance nuclear politics: Western Europe, America and the genesis of Nato's dual-track decision, 1977-1979',  Journal of Cold War Studies, 13, 2 (2011);  'Precluded or precedent-setting?: the "NATO enlargement question" in the triangular Bonn-Washington-Moscow diplomacy of 1990/1991', Journal of Cold War Studies, 14, 4 (2012) and 'Helmut Schmidt and the Shaping of Western Security in the Late 1970s: the Guadeloupe Summit of 1979'|, International History Review (pre-published online version, 25 Nov. 2013)..

She has also contributed chapters to a number of edited volumes. These include: adapted and shortened reprints of the CWH (2006) and JBS (2007) articles (listed above) in John Hiden, Vahur Made, David Smith (eds), The Baltic Question during the Cold War [Cold War History series] (London: Routledge, 2009). 'Memoranda', in Miriam Dobson and Benjamin Ziemann (eds), Reading Primary Sources: The Interpretation of Texts from Modern History (London: Routledge, 2008). ‘International reactions to Soviet disintegration: the case of the Baltic States’, in Frederic Bozo et al. (eds), Europe and the End of the Cold War: A Reppraisal (London: Routledge, 2008). 'Finland and the Baltic States, 1914-1945'|, in Robert Gerwarth (ed.), Twisted Paths: Europe, 1914-1945 (Oxford: OUP, 2007).

She was the recipient of a €30,000 NATO grant in the summer of 2003 for an Advanced Research Workshop (NATO Science Programme/NATO Public Diplomacy Division), A systemic comparison of professional and conscript forces, in December 2003 in Bratislava, Slovakia.

In 2008 she was awarded grants by the German Gerda Henkel Stiftung and the Journal of Contemporary History for a Joint LSE-King's College London conference entitled: 'At the Crossroads of Past and Present: "Contemporary" History and the Historical Discipline'| (22-23 May 2009), which she organised with Prof Jan Palmowski| of KCL. (See also: 'Contemporary History in the Spotlight')

Dr Spohr gained her B.A. (1997) from the University of East Anglia - with a year abroad at Sciences Po, Paris - where she read European Studies, Economics, French, before moving on to study for her History M.Phil. and Ph.D. at Peterhouse, Cambridge. After completion of her Ph.D., she worked as a Research Fellow in the Secretary General’s Private Office at NATO headquarters in Brussels. From 2001, she was a Junior Research Fellow in History at Christ's College, Cambridge until she joined LSE in 2004.

Her current research interests include: Cold War summitry; the end of the Cold War; theory and practice of Contemporary History. She is writing a monograph on Helmut Schmidt and the Shaping of International Affairs in the 1970s and 1980s.

Click here for more on publications by Dr Kristina Spohr|.

Teaching and Supervision

Dr Spohr's teaching at LSE reflects the research interests outlined above. She usually teaches the following courses:

At undergraduate level:

HY116: International History since 1890| (taught jointly with other members of the Department)

HY206: The International History of the Cold War 1945-1975| (taught jointly with other members of the Department)

HY320: The Cold War Endgame, 1975-1991|

At Masters level:

HY432: From Cold Warriors to Peacemakers: The End of the Cold War Era, 1979-1997|

Dr Spohr is currently supervising the following PhD students:

Research Student

Provisional Thesis Title

Zhong Z. Chen

Between political pragmatism and Moscow's watchful eye: East German-Chinese relations in the 1980s

Contact details

Office: Room EAS.E500
Telephone: 020 7955 7103
Email Address: k.spohr@lse.ac.uk|

Office Hours

Thursday: 8:45-9:45am and by appointment


Dr Kristina Spohr