RELATE Centre of Excellence

The changing state spaces research group led by Professor Sami Moisio is one of the four themes of the RELATE Centre of Excellence funded by the Academy of Finland. RELATE is an acronym for “Relational and Territorial Politics of Bordering, Identities, and Transnationalization.”

CoE's primary objective is to investigate and conceptualize the simultaneous, “chiasmatic” existence of “territorial” and “relational” processes. We argue that what has been neglected in research is how the two are constituted by and constitutive of “boundedness” and borders, and how we should understand borders under such conditions: how does the process of (re-)bordering occur and becomes materialized in the institutionalization of territorial and relational/ supraterritorial spatial configurations. The constitutive powers of borders and identities have become increasingly complex and multi-scalar and it is therefore crucial to move beyond the territorial/relational dichotomy to make sense of this complexity. Through both drawing from and developing further recent socio-spatial theorizing on borders, our central goal is to contribute to the pivotal social scientific issues of contemporary world: globalization, global governance and the transformation of borders.

The central goal of the changing state spaces research group is to foster dialogue between critical political geography, political economy and policy studies.