Nerses Kopalyan

Nerses Kopalyan

Dr. Nerses Kopalyan is an Associate Professor-in-Residence of Political Science at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. His fields of specialization include international security, geopolitics, political theory, and philosophy of science. He has conducted extensive research on polarity, superpower relations, and security studies. He is the author of "World Political Systems After Polarity" (Routledge, 2017), the co-author of "Sex, Power, and Politics" (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016), and co-author of "Latinos in Nevada: A Political, Social, and Economic Profile" (2021, Nevada University Press). His current research and academic publication concentrate on geopolitical and great power relations within Eurasia, with specific emphasis on democratic breakthroughs within authoritarian orbits. He has conducted extensive field work in Armenia on the country's security architecture and its democratization process. He has authored several policy papers for the Government of Armenia and served as voluntary advisor to various state institutions. Dr. Kopalyan is also a regular contributor to EVN Report.

EVN Security Report: May 2024

EVN Security Report: May 2024

Armenia must utilize the concept of de-hybridization to mitigate Azerbaijan’s non-linear warfare, which ranges from kinetic diplomacy to complex hybrid operations. Nerses Kopalyan explains what a strategy of de-hybridization for Armenia should look like.

EVN Security Report: April 2024

In order for Armenia to mitigate, anticipate, and deter Azerbaijan's threats and potential attacks, it must understand and qualify the mechanisms that define the Aliyev regime’s propensity for bellicosity, and gauge its “coercive credibility”.

EVN Security Report: March 2024

EVN Security Report: March 2024

In Armenia, establishing a Western pivot was crucial to achieve an independent foreign policy and enhance security capabilities, paving the way for diversification in foreign and security relations. This process involves pivoting first, diversifying, and only then adopting hedging strategies.

EVN Security Report: February 2024

EVN Security Report: February 2024

As Armenia proceeds to diversify its access to armaments and advanced weapons systems, the development of a comprehensive, well-structured, and expert-driven procurement program will strengthen Armenia’s initiatives and support the strengthening and democratization of its defense sector.

EVN Security Report: January 2024

EVN Security Report: January 2024

Noting the instrumentalization of warfare as the dominant and preferred strategic tool of the Aliyev regime, a rationalist explanation of war is introduced in this month's security briefing to address the causal mechanisms shaping Aliyev’s incentives for being conflict-prone.

EVN Security Report: December 2023

EVN Security Report: December 2023

An institutional theory of security is necessary for Armenia so that it escapes institutional underdevelopment and the culture of inchoate security thinking inherited from the Soviet legacy, writes Nerses Kopalyan for the December 2023 security report.

EVN Security Report: October 2023

EVN Security Report: October 2023

Armenia’s Western pivot is neither ideational nor conceptually geopolitical, it’s a matter of survival. The objective of the Western pivot is not about replacing one dependency structure with another, but rather, rupturing the entire logic of dependency and establishing sustainable security independence.

EVN Security Report: September 2023

EVN Security Report: September 2023

The status quo established by the Russo-Azerbaijani tandem in Nagorno-Karabakh completely broke down after Baku launched a massive invasion of Artsakh while coordinating operations with Russian forces. This culminated in the collapse of the Artsakh Republic. Nerses Kopalyan presents an in-depth analysis of developments.

EVN Security Report: August 2023

EVN Security Report: August 2023

The madman theory is a strategy in coercive bargaining, where the perceived extremism of an actor is leveraged to achieve one-sided outcomes. Aliyev’s bargaining posture operates off of the logic that if his terms are not met, he reserves the right to wage war, thus anchoring the threat of destruction to force acquiescence from Armenia and the international community.

EVN Security Report: July 2023

EVN Security Report: July 2023

Critical self-reflection is necessary as Armenia overhauls its intelligence infrastructure. For national security strategy to be concrete, substantive and operationalizable, it requires strategic intelligence. Nerses Kopalyan explains.

EVN Security Report: June 2023

EVN Security Report: June 2023

In this security report, scenario planning is fused with contingency planning to prepare courses of actions and outcomes that may address unexpected situations and mitigate significant impact to Armenia due to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict and its effect upon Russia’s domestic political order.

EVN Security Report: May 2023

EVN Security Report: May 2023

Armenia’s vast mines have never been part of its security architecture, nor has the potential securitization of this sector ever been considered a fundamental cornerstone of building alliances or strategic partnerships. Mining-for-security should not be qualified as a political act, but rather, a fundamental security act, Nerses Kopalyan writes.

EVN Security Report: April 2023

EVN Security Report: April 2023

Russia’s refusal to either enforce or impartially implement the terms of the November 9 tripartite statement that ended the 2020 Artsakh War has generated a growing cleavage between Armenia and Russia, revealing Moscow’s preference for frozen conflict persistence.

EVN Security Report: March 2023

EVN Security Report: March 2023

The region’s security arrangement remains in flux as Azerbaijan amplified its rhetorical aggression and engaged in expansive troop movements and build-up in border areas. Greater Western involvement has deepened the alliance between Azerbaijan and Russia. While Moscow and Baku have established a united front against the West’s presence in the region, Armenia has proceeded to reconfigure its strategic interests, advancing its democracy narrative, while aligning its preferences to the resolution of the conflict with the Western-led stabilization efforts.

EVN Security Report: February 2023

EVN Security Report: February 2023

Armenia's precarious security situation is compounded by its underdeveloped institutions and infirm infrastructure. For the February security briefing, Nerses Kopalyan writes that in this context, the entirety of Armenia’s social and governmental approach must revolve around building resilience.

EVN Security Report: January 2023

EVN Security Report: January 2023

Taking into consideration the security context in January and guided by a strategy of deterrence-by-denial, Armenia must develop a “porcupine doctrine” to deter Azerbaijan’s objectives and the destabilizing designs of the Aliyev regime.

EVN Security Report: December 2022

EVN Security Report: December 2022

The security context in December showed that regardless of negotiations or the general contours of a potential peace treaty, actual and sustainable peace with the Aliyev Government will remain elusive. This month’s security report introduces the concept of ontological security.

EVN Security Report: November 2022

EVN Security Report: November 2022

The security context for the month of November demonstrates observable decline for Armenia as Azerbaijan intensified and amplified its hybrid warfare activities, attempting to neutralize Armenia’s growing attempts at the diplomatization of its deterrence capabilities.

EVN Security Report: October 2022

EVN Security Report: October 2022

The security context for the month of October can be better understood as the changing configuration between Armenia’s implementation of its diplomatization-of-security doctrine against Azerbaijan’s multi-tiered hybrid warfare doctrine.

EVN Security Report: September 2022

EVN Security Report: September 2022

Armenia’s security situation remains precarious, as Azerbaijan has exponentially increased its use of interstate conflict mechanisms, undertaking both large-scale invasions as well as incrementally utilizing hybrid warfare to justify violations of the ceasefire.

Is the Diaspora Patriotic Enough?

Is the Diaspora Patriotic Enough?

If we are to develop and build a functional relationship between the Homeland and the Armenian Diaspora, we need to understand the discrepancy between the Diaspora’s devotion to Armenianness and the Republic of Armenia’s vision for the Armenian world.

No Parliament for Rich, Old Men

Dr. Nerses Kopalyan provides an in-depth analysis of the parties and coalition of parties that are running for the Dec. 9 snap parliamentary elections. Of the 11 political forces preparing for the campaign, Kopalyan writes, only six are competitive and have the capacity to influence and effect the policy discourse during the campaign.

Why the Corrupt are Terrified of Transitional Justice

Why the Corrupt are Terrified of Transitional Justice

Formulating the compatibility of transitional justice with Armenia's laws and constitutional statutes shouldn't be problematic, writes Nerses Kopalyan. However, the Pashinyan government, must go out of its way to make certain that the formation of any element of the instruments of transitional justice are fundamentally impartial, profoundly non-politicized, and unequivocally objective.

Pashinyan’s War

Pashinyan’s War

Nerses Kopalyan writes that Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan’s declaration of war against the entrenched powers of the previous system is not simply a singular attack against corruption, but rather a broad multi-pronged strategy that envisions an ideational restructuring of Armenia’s political culture.

Children in the Hands of an Abusive Father: The Popular Movement, the RPA, and Armenia’s Constitutional Crisis

Children in the Hands of an Abusive Father: The Popular Movement, the RPA, and Armenia’s Constitutional Crisis

Armenia is facing its greatest challenge since independence. Nikol Pashinyan’s Velvet Revolution has left the ruling Republican Party facing a crisis of legitimacy. Nerses Kopalyan writes, “Pashinyan is not seeking to usurp the Constitutional legitimacy of Parliament, but rather, force the majority in Parliament to conform to the will of the popular movement.”