Strategies of border control – determinants of changes and their impact on the nature of contemporary political borders


The aim of the article is to present changes of the border control applied by European states (especially within the European Union) over the last few decades, as their reaction to the redefinition of territorial borders and new challenges in the international order. First of all, the key determinants of these changes were identified, which influenced the nature of contemporary borders and strongly affect the applied border control strategies. The dynamic and complexity of the process are an effect of three factors: 1) the intensification of globalization and reactions of nations states to it, 2) deepening and widening of the regional integration processes (in Europe within the European Union), 3) the increase of terrorist threat (terrorism as an important treat to European security) and the linkage of terrorism with migration. All these factor are dynamic, and influence interstates borders and their functions thought their impact on particular borders are different in scope and time. As a result of their impact, border control strategies have a multi-stage structure (multiplication of controls) and encompass instruments going beyond control activities carried out directly on territorially defined borders (externalization and internalization border controls). In addition, border controls are not only carried out by border guards in physical reality, but we are witnessing the strengthening of the importance of virtual control practices through large electronic databases. Nowadays, border control is no longer a single act, but a permanent process carried out everywhere, in physical and virtual reality. We are living in the world of bordering and it is not important which border you cross, but who you are. Thus, borders are simultaneously open (debordering) for someone and closed (rebordering) for another one.


border; border functions; border control; bordering

Published : 2018-11-02

Trojanowska-Strzęboszewska, M. (2018). Strategies of border control – determinants of changes and their impact on the nature of contemporary political borders. Pogranicze. Polish Borderlands Studies, 6(2), 83-102.

Monika Trojanowska-Strzęboszewska
University of Cardinal Stefan Wyszynski  Poland

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