YATA Norway proudly presents a further introduction of the speakers at NorSec 2017. Our distinguished guests from academia, organisations and the civil service will speak at the conference in Oslo May 6-7th on the topic of “NATO and Russia in a Changing World”. Have a look at the full programme.

See here for part 1 of our speaker introductions. We look forward to welcoming you to the biggest annual YATA Norway event. See you at the conference!


Kåre Dahl Martinsen – Professor at the Norwegian Institute for Defence Studies.

Dr. Kåre Dahl Martinsen is the professor of European Security Policy at the Centre for Transatlantic studies of the Norwegian Defence University College (Forsvarets Høgskole), where he has been a researcher since 1999. He obtained his PhD in political science at Roskilde Universitet, Denmark, in 2000; Master of Literature at the University of Glasgow in 1988.

Dr. Martinsen is an historian and the author of the history books “Alle tiders historie” for Norwegian high school students. He has researched European co-operation before and after the fall of the Berlin wall. Among Dr. Martinsen’s current research interests are: Executive war prerogatives and parliamentary control, transatlantic relations, NATO, and the TTIP. He is a regular contributor to research publications, popular science articles and political commentary.

At NorSec 2017 Dr. Martinsen will be speaking on the topic “The relationship between EU and Russia – Are the sanctions working?”.



Geir Flikke

Geir Flikke – Associate Professor at the University of Oslo.

Geir Flikke is an Associate Professor in the area of Russia, Central Europe and the Balkans, at the University of Oslo. He holds a PhD degree from the University of Oslo (2006), with a thesis on Russia’s democratization movement from the 1990s. He was the Assistant Director of the Norwegian Institue of Foreign Affairs (NUPI) during 2006-2010 and a senior researcher, before assuming his position at the University of Oslo from January 2013. Geir Flikke is currently head of the Norwegian Research Council project “NEPORUS”, analyzing the changing framework for social organization and social mobilization in Russia. Furthermore, he teaches courses in history, nation-building and politics in Russia and Eurasia at the University of Oslo. For more information on the “NEPORUS” project, please see here.

Recent publications include “The Sword of Damocles. State Governability in Putin’s Third Term” in Problems of Post-Communism, 2017; and “Russia’s special path in the relation between state and nation”, in Christian Gottlieb (ed.),  Russia and the Nordic countries, 2016.

At NorSec 2017 Geir Flikke will be speaking on the topic “A closer look at Putin’s challenges at home”.

Øystein Bø

Øystein Bø – State Secretary at the Norwegian Ministry of Defence.

Øystein Bø is an experienced diplomat, army officer, lawyer, politician, and a current State Secretary at the Norwegian Ministry of Defence since 2013. He is a 1989 law studies graduate of the University of Oslo. Mr. Bø has previously filled numerous roles in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs since 1999, including as the Deputy permanent representative of Norway to NATO, Chef de cabinet to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, and as Head of the International Department and Permanent Secretary of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defence in the Norwegian Parliament (Stortinget). He is a recipient of the United States Department of the Navy Distinguished Public Service Award.

At NorSec 2017 Øystein Bø will be delivering opening remarks on the topic “Security from a Norwegian perspective”.




Palle Ydstebø

 Palle Ydstebø – Head of Division for Military Strategy and Doctrine at the Norwegian Defence College.

Lieutenant Colonel Palle Ydstebø is Head of the Division for Military Strategy and Docrine at the Norwegian Defence College. He is military educated from the Norwegian Air Force, the Norwegian Military Academy (Krigsskolen) and Defence College. Furthermore, he is a graduate in history at the University of Tromsø. Lieutenant Colonel Ydstebø commenced work on his doctorate at the University of Glasgow in January 2016. He has had a long and varied service in the military including the air force and intelligence. He has international experience from postings in Afghanistan, Germany, and the UN forces in South Sudan.

Ydstebø’s most recent publication is Første verdenskrig – operasjoner, myter og innflytelse (2014), on the first world war’s operations, myths and influence.

At NorSec 2017 Palle Ydstebø will be speaking on the topic “NATO and Russia – who is the aggressor?”.




Eirik Løkke

Eirik Løkke – Advisor at Civita.

Eirik Løkke is an advisor in the Norwegian think-tank Civita. He is a former digital advisor for UNICEF Norway and a campagin advisor for the Norwegian Conservative Party. Mr. Løkke is a master of History, bachelor of Comparative Politics and legal subjects at the University of Bergen. He is a former president of the Student Society in Bergen. Today he serves on the Board of Editors in the liberal online magazine Minerva.

At NorSec 2017 Eirik Løkke will be moderating the panel debate “Discussion with following Q&A: Is NATO outdated?”.





Sverre Diesen

Sverre Diesen – Norwegian Military Officer and former Chief of Defence.

General Sverre Diesen served as Norway’s Chief of Defence from 2005 to 2009. He is a graduate of the Norwegian Military Academy, the Norwegian and British Defence Colleges and a civil engineer from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU).  Diesen has had a multitude of staff and command positions, including as Chief of the Royal Guards, and Head of the Strategy and Longterm Planning division of the Defence High Command. He has published two books, on military strategy and future perspectives for the Norwegian Defence, respectively. Furthermore he is a frequent contributor to military academic publications and Norwegian media in general on defence and security related issues. Diesen is currently a researcher at the Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (FFI).

At NorSec 2017 Sverre Diesen will be participating in the panel debate “Discussion with following Q&A: Is NATO outdated?”.



Maren Garberg Bredesen

Maren Garberg Bredesen – Junior Researcher at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs.

Maren Garberg Bredesen is a junior research fellow at NUPI, working in the Research group for Security and Defence and in the Research group for Russia, Eurasia and the Arctic.

Ms. Bredesen is a graduate of International Relations, War Studies, and Russian. Her academic interests include military theory and strategy, Russia and Eurasia, and security and defence cooperation in the Nordic countries. Ongoing research project: Nordic security after Crimea: Dilemmas and opportunities in Norwegian-Swedish Defence Cooperation (2017). Thr project will conduct a review of Norwegian bilateral defence cooperation with the other Nordics, and in particular Norwegian-Swedish defence cooperation.

At NorSec 2017 Maren Garberg Bredesen will be participating in the panel debate “Discussion with following Q&A: Is NATO outdated?”.



Espen Amundsen

Espen Amundsen – Senior Advisor at Rud Pedersen Public Affairs and former Major General in the Norwegian Armed Forces.

Espen Amundsen is a Senior Adviser at Rud Pedersen Public Affairs in Oslo. Amundsen is a retired Air Force Major General with 40 years of service in the Norwegian Armed Forces. He has held many positions within the Armed Forces, and he has been part of the top management team. Amundsen has been Deputy Chief of Staff, Personnel, Finance and Management Division in Defence Staff Norway and Chief of Staff, Air Force Staff. Espen has extensive experience cooperating with the Ministry of Defence. From 1988 to 1991 Amundsen served as aide de camp to His Majesty the King of Norway, Olav V.

Amundsen is a graduate of the US Naval Postgraduate School, the Norwegian Staff College and the Norwegian Defence College. He has studied political science and he has a Master of Administrative Science from USA.

At NorSec 2017 Espen Amundsen will be participating in the panel debate “Discussion with following Q&A: Is NATO outdated?”.




NorSec 2017 takes place in Oslo, May 6-7th.