Each year over 6,000 students from 120 nations study at the LSE campus in the heart of Central London. This degree will help to prepare you for careers in areas of diplomacy, government, and consultancy. It is ideal for anyone wishing to understand the international aspects of global problems such as environmental degradation and economic globalisation. It also offers a broad understanding of the core literature and main theoretical issues in this field.

Some IR scholars also make it their business to blog, tweet, and broadcast their work so as to inform public debate and public policy. And in the US, it is common for academics to move from university to government and back again (just think of Henry Kissinger’s career trajectory or, more recently, Samantha Power). Any grant-holding academic working in the UK, meanwhile, will be aware of the need to demonstrate ‘impact’ in their research. Science, technology and international relations – How science and technology impact global health, business, environment, technology, and development. The balance of power was a concept prevalent in Europe prior to the First World War, the thought being that by balancing power blocs it would create stability and prevent war. Theories of the balance of power gained prominence again during the Cold War, being a central mechanism of Kenneth Waltz’s neorealism.

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As our global society evolves and expands, international relations will evolve and expand along with it as we continue to explore new and exciting way to link our complex world. Critical theory is actually a set of theories that challenges assumptions made in traditional approaches to international relations. For example, that the quest for power is the motivating factor in state actions. In fact, these theorists often argue that these traditional assumptions may very well be responsible for some of the tragedies that occur in international politics, such as war, third-world poverty, and ethnic cleansing. International organizations and certain subnational entities (e.g., bureaucracies, political parties, and interest groups). It is related to a number of other academic disciplines, including political science, geography, history, economics, law, sociology, psychology, and philosophy.

We train students in different theoretical approaches and empower them to make their own methodological choices. Constructivists focus on how national identity is formed in order to understand national interests. For example, states that share common characteristics or traits, such as democracy and capitalism, tend to view each other in positive terms, while viewing states without these shared characteristics often identify in negative terms. Thus, states with similar identities may tend to socialize positively with each other, while being hostile to states that have radically different identities. Constructivism has provided some important insights into understanding conflicts based upon ethnicity, religion, and terrorism. The London School of Economics and Political Science provides academic direction for this programme.

  • This is for example the case in Scandinavia, where international relations are often simply referred to as international politics .
  • It’s easy to get around campus – everything is within walking or pedalling distance, or you can always use the fast and frequent bus service.
  • The establishment of modern sovereign states as fundamental political units traces back to the Peace of Westphalia of 1648 in Europe.
  • The operation of these laws being impervious to our preferences, persons will challenge them only at the risk of failure.

There is debate over whether Thucydides himself was a realist; Richard Ned Lebow has argued that seeing Thucydides as a realist is a misinterpretation of a more complex political message within his work. Amongst others, philosophers like Machiavelli, Hobbes and Rousseau are considered to have contributed to the Realist philosophy. However, while their work may support realist doctrine, it is not likely that they would have classified themselves as realists in this sense. Political realism believes that politics, like society, is governed by objective laws with roots in human nature. To improve society, it is first necessary to understand the laws by which society lives.

Entry

In the final year of your degree you will write a 10,000 word dissertation on a topic of your choice. You will be guided and supported by a supervisor who is an expert in your area of interest. In addition to writing the dissertation you will be able to take four optional modules. Modules in the final year are advanced, research led modules taught by experts in the subject area.

For Postgraduate programmes, South African nationals with a degree from South Africa or another English speaking country (as on the University’s approved list) are not required to submit an English Language test. For Postgraduate programmes, Sierra Leonean nationals with a degree from Sierra Leone or another English speaking country (as on the University’s approved list) are not required to submit an English Language test. For Postgraduate programmes, Nigerian nationals with a degree from Nigeria or another English speaking country (as on the University’s approved list) are not required to submit an English Language test. For Postgraduate programmes Mauritian nationals with a degree from Mauritius or another English speaking country (as on the University’s approved list) are not required to submit an English Language test.