Expert Profile

Dr Theodor H. Winkler
Position(s) Distinguished Swiss public servant

Ambassador Dr. Theodor Winkler [known as Teddy among the GCSP and ITC community] is a distinguished Swiss public servant. He studied at the University of Geneva and at the Graduate Institute, from which he ultimately received his PhD in International Security Studies in 1981, after having been a research fellow at Harvard University’s Center for International Affairs and at the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London. He then entered government service in Switzerland’s Federal Military Department, known today as the DDPS. He held essential positions such as Head of Studies for the General Staff’s Strategic Intelligence Service from 1981 to 1991, and represented the Chief of the General Staff for Politico-Military Affairs from 1985 to 1995. Having been the architect of the ITC, as he often reminds us, he was then appointed as the first director of the Geneva Center for Security Policy in 1995-1996, before heading the DDPS’s International Security Policy in its General Secretariat. He then chaired Switzerland’s Partnership for Peace interdepartmental office and reflection group. From 2000 to 2016, with the rank of Ambassador, he was the director of the Geneva Center for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces, GCSP’s close neighbor in the Maison de la Paix.

Ambassador Winkler is a prolific author, of several hundred articles published by scholarly journals, DCAF, and in the daily press in Switzerland and in the UK. Among his books, feature his memoirs published in German language by LIT-Verlag, titled in English “The Box was Happy that I was Thinking Outside of It”, which appeared in 2017. He has continued this work reflecting on Globalization and the Unruly World in subsequent books in 2018 and 2019, and his forthcoming book, “On Change: the Forces that Transform our World” will be published by LIT Verlag in July 2021.”