Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Maritime Affairs


Maritime Administration


Malmö, Sweden



First Advisor

McFarland, R.E.


The objective of this study is to identify the role of the IMO within the international actions against global terrorism after the attacks of September 11 2001, in the USA. The essential and relevant elements of terrorism are observed within academic definitions in order to examine how they affect policies and strategies that guide a response against it. The impacts of terrorist attacks on society are appreciated in their influence on trade and all aspects. The constituency of the response is analyzed in search for the principles that may give an approach that is not simply limited to the issuance of regulations and measures but to the integration of a maritime policy and strategy to protect shipping. Two case studies are looked into in order to identify the causes as to why shipping has not had protection in past situations of crisis. The solution to terrorism in the maritime sphere of influence is explored under the principles of reform of the United Nations, the legitimacy of the IMO as the maritime forum, the concept of Global Governance towards Maritime Governance, and the theory of complexity. The change proposed is significant; therefore, core issues of the identity of IMO and its overall role have been briefly visited in order to provide for its new approach against terrorism. The role of the IMO is then built on its previous structure and the new components of a future enriching and vigorous role for the protection of shipping. Conclusions, recommendations and a guide for further research are presented.