12. Maritime borders and borderlands

Chairs: Adriana Dorfman (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil), Virginie Mamadouh (University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands) and Samuel Bastos Bracagioli (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil)

Type: hybrid

Seas are more often than not seen as divides between continents, countries and even civilizations. But they are also conceived as interfaces, as spaces of collaboration and solidarity, as bridges to territories and places overseas, be it in colonial or postcolonial times, in trade links, in face of rescue needs, in international waters etc. Sovereignty over maritime areas has been extensively discussed, as territorial claims and bordering processes abound. Theory on maritime borders is not so abundant, and struggle with the choice of applying land reasoning to maritime bordering or developing a more suitable understanding, including depth as a third dimension, fluidity as an imperative (even more in times of climate change) and other processes more clearly found in this milieu. This session welcomes presentations about the bordering and ordering of the ocean, seas and other large bodies of water (like the Great Lakes in Northern America and the African Great Lakes). It invites conceptual and empirical analysis of maritime borders and state sovereignty, and of the governance of maritime human activities beyond maritime borders. Themes include but are not limited to:
• Maritime border disputes regarding the delimitation of the baseline of a state, and hence its inland waters, its territorial waters, its contiguous zone and its Exclusive Economic Zone.
• Ports as multinational borders and interfaces between land and seas, ships as mobile sovereignties.
• Claims and settlement on islands related to maritime claims.
• Maritime border crossings (undocumented migration, illegal trade).
• Supranational region building around a common sea (Mediterranean, Caribbean, Baltic Sea, Black Sea, Red Sea, Gulf…).
• Governance of common ocean resources (fishing) and/or global pollution (garbage patches).
• Governance of deep sea cable infrastructure.
• Governance of artificial waterways and the zones around them.
• Governance of ports areas and special economic zones.
• Governance of sea lanes and protection against piracy.
• Climate change impacts on the ocean, coasts and islands and on maritime borders.
With these sessions on Maritime borders and Borderlands the IGU Commission on Political Geography aims at stimulating knowledge production and exchange and to the contribution of political geography and border studies to Ocean Science for Sustainable Development.

Keywords: maritime borders, international waters, sea rescue, piracy, smuggling