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21st Century International Systems’ Security


There are various views on the international security systems in the 21st century. Global security systems are multifaceted, complex, and beyond traditional–based security measures and military concepts. The paper examines the varying system security, changing nature of the threats, and the obstacles to security. It implies that security must be approached holistically and comprehensively in the modern world, considering the variety and interconnectedness of challenges and issues. In order to solve the issues of global security in the twenty-first century, the article emphasizes the necessity of joint and cooperative efforts.

Keywords: system security, obstacles, interconnectedness, global security, the twenty-first century, joint efforts.


Since the development of the modern state system, security has emerged as a major concern in international relations. Nevertheless, due to the complexity and interconnectedness of today’s worldwide threats, the scope and nature of security have experienced significant modifications. The rise of new security issues, including terrorism, the impact of climate change, digital warfare, and global epidemics, has put the conventional state-centric strategy for security, which concentrated primarily on military defence against external hazards, under pressure. The paper aims to investigate how modern security ideology applies to the worldwide system. The various facets associated with safety as well as the evolving nature of security hazards and challenges, will be covered in this paper. It is expected to argue that a thorough and broad strategy for security is necessary.

Literature Review

The primary concept is conventional security, which relates to the conventional state-centric method of security that emphasizes the application of force to protect against external dangers (Buzan & Hansen, 2019). This strategy is predicated on the concept that the nation-state is a key player in the global system, which implies that the best way to maintain national security is by deploying an armed force. Considering various non-military hazards and issues, unconventional security is a larger and more encompassing approach to safety (Ferreira,2019,p.148). Non-traditional security issues vary widely and are linked together, necessitating a different systematic approach to security. Examples include financial safety, ecological safety, safety for humans, and digital safety. Another key idea in systems security is globalization, a term used to describe the increasing reliance and connectivity of the economic growth, civilizations, and cultures around the entire globe (Onyeaka et al,.p.120-155). Multinational terrorist activities, environmental degradation, and technological warfare are just a few of the emerging safety issues brought on by globalization that call for increased coordination and collaboration between nations and other organizations (Soubrier, 2020,p.15). Protection of individuals and societies against various risks and difficulties, such as disease, destitution, deterioration of the environment, and violations of basic human rights, is a form of insecurity that requires global concern (United Nations Development Programme, 2019). The emphasis on addressing the fundamental roots of feeling unsafe, such as income disparity and poverty, marks a departure from the conventional state-centric method for addressing security.

The theoretical basis also incorporates several important theories pertinent to the research topic regarding safety in the twenty-first century: these include realism, liberal ideals, the philosophy of constructivism as well as contemporary security studies. In international affairs, realism constitutes a dominant conceptual viewpoint that highlights the influence of self-interest and authority in determining state conduct (Buzan & Hansen, 2019). Realists emphasize the necessity of using force and military might to maintain national security and see international partnership and communal safety as constrained and unstable. Onyeaka et al. (2021) examine neoliberalism as a conceptual school of thought emphasising the value of international structures, regulations, and collaboration in fostering security and stability. Liberals strongly emphasise the role of the rule of law, human rights, and financial interdependence in determining how states behave and recognize the need for global collaboration and shared security policies to tackle pressing issues. Constructivism is a hypothetical system of thought emphasising how concepts, standards, and values influence states’ behaviour (Buzan & Hansen, 2019). This philosophy strongly emphasises the role of education and socialization processes in determining state conduct and sees international partnership and collective security as continually evolving and ever-changing. Finally, to effectively study systems security, it is important to examine prevailing perspectives and structures of authority according to the conceptual framework of critical security analysis (Onyeaka et al,.p.120-155). According to significant security research studies, international collaboration and collective safety depend on more significant economic and political modification, highlighting the significance of tackling problems related to unfairness, unequal treatment, and isolation in security.

Various Dimensions of Systems Security

Despite military and state-centric ideas, security and systems safety is complicated and diverse. The advent of emerging security concerns with multinational and worldwide dimensions has posed a challenge to the old approach to security, particularly concentrated on shielding the state from external dangers. Scholars and policymakers have created new conceptualizations concerning safety that extend beyond the conventional military-centric perspective in response to these new problems. Human security, sustainability, financial safety, and internet safety are only a few of the various security dimensions currently recognized. Human security focuses on defending people against dangers that compromise their physical safety, financial stability, and fundamental rights(Buzan and Hansen,2019). It acknowledges that people everywhere are also concerned about security and states. The preservation of biodiversity and the sustainability underlying natural resources are the main goals for environmental safety. It acknowledges that social unrest and violence can result from the destruction of the environment. The protection of financial assets and the sustainability of the international economy are key components of a secure economy. It acknowledges that both political and social turmoil can result from the financial crisis, hence the need to ensure that the computer systems and vital equipment are protected against assaults from cyber criminals(Soubrier, 2020,p.15). The security system acknowledges that cyber-attacks may cause serious adverse impacts on the economy and society.

The shifting nature of Threats to Security and Constraints

As a result of the interrelationships and complexity of global problems, security risks have changed significantly in both nature and extent in the 21st century. The advent of new security issues, including terrorism, environmental degradation, digital warfare, and epidemics, has put pressure on the conventional state-centric strategy for security, which concentrated exclusively on military defence against external dangers. Considering that international terrorist groups like Al Qaeda and ISIS conduct assaults all over the world, terrorist activity has grown to be a significant security problem in the twenty-first century(Buzan and Hansen,2019). The threat of terrorism to human security has compelled authorities worldwide to step up monitoring and safety measures. Climate change has become a significant security hazard in the twenty-first century that can create extensive societal and environmental harm. Catastrophic events, shortages in water and food, and social and political instability can all be brought on by warming temperatures. States must work together to confront it because it threatens ecological security. Cyber warfare has become a significant security risk, possibly damaging essential facilities such as data systems(Ferreira,2019, pp.120-140). Governments have established sophisticated cyber warfare techniques for safeguarding against these assaults since they can have enormous financial and social impacts. Cybersecurity is essential because of how much technology is used in contemporary society and how susceptible societies are to cyberattacks. In modern times, cyber warfare has become a significant security risk, possibly damaging vital networks and information infrastructure(Ferreira,2019,p.148). States have established powerful cyber warfare abilities to protect against online assaults, which can have substantial economic and societal effects.

Pandemics, like the COVID-19 pandemic, have become a significant national threat that can trigger widespread socioeconomic and health conditions. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought attention to the necessity for worldwide collaboration and coordinated action to confront health issues worldwide (Onyeaka et al.,.p.120-155). To minimize the impact of global epidemics on human security, governmental authorities need to organize their actions.

A Holistic Approach to Global System Security

A fully integrated and holistic strategy for security that incorporates a wide range of stakeholders, particularly governments, international agencies, organizations representing civil society, and people involved in the implementation of this approach. At the state level, an integrated approach to security entails striking a balance between conventional security issues and other security elements like human safety, ecological safety, and financial safety(Soubrier, 2020,p.15)

. This necessitates incorporating these elements into national security goals and plans and investing in the ability to counter various security concerns. More significant interaction and collaboration between states and international agencies are necessary for a worldwide approach to systems security. There is a need to effectively address global security issues by improving the already-existing global legal structures and structures, including the United Nations (UN). It additionally entails creating new structures and methods for collaboration on new security concerns, like pandemics and digital safety. Persons and organizations from civil society are also essential in advancing an integrated security plan. This entails pushing more focus on less common security aspects, like individual safety and sustainability, and it also encourages global collaboration and conversation on major security issues.


The idea of security in the international framework of the twenty-first century is complicated and multifaceted, necessitating an all-encompassing and integrated approach. Increasing communication and cooperation between nations and other entities is necessary due to the evolving nature of potential challenges and problems, such as terrorist activity, global warming, cyberwarfare, and emergencies. Standard security issues must be balanced with additional facets of security, such as individual, ecological, and financial safety, as part of a holistic security strategy. Additionally, it includes strengthening global organizations and legal structures and investing in the ability to respond to various security hazards. Finally, handling the varied and interrelated character of dangers to security in the 21st century requires fostering international collaboration and conversation on global security concerns.


Buzan, B. and Hansen, L., 2019. The evolution of international security studies. Cambridge University Press.

Ferreira, M.A.S., 2019. Brazilian criminal organizations as transnational violent non-state actors: a case study of the Primeiro Comando da Capital (PCC). Trends in Organized Crime, 22(2), pp.148-165.

Onyeaka, H., Anumudu, C.K., Al-Sharify, Z.T., Egele-Godswill, E. and Mbaegbu, P., 2021. COVID-19 pandemic: A review of the global lockdown and its far-reaching effects. Science Progress, 104(2), p.00368504211019854.

Soubrier, E., 2020. The weaponized Gulf riyal politik (s) and shifting dynamics of the global arms trade. The Economics of Peace and Security Journal, 15(1).

United Nations Development Programme, 2019. Human Development Report 2019: Beyond income, beyond averages, beyond today–inequalities in human development in the 21st century.


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