Unit International relations and global politics

International relations
Study-unit Code
Migration, globalisation and world governance
Silvia Bolgherini
  • Silvia Bolgherini
  • 54 ore - Silvia Bolgherini
Course Regulation
Coorte 2024
Learning activities
Academic discipline
Type of study-unit
Obbligatorio (Required)
Type of learning activities
Attività formativa monodisciplinare
Language of instruction
The course consists of lectures and seminars. Lectures aim to introduce students to the core tenets of the discipline. The main theories of International Relations and the debates related to them will be approached. Seminars aim to provide occasions for in-depth discussions. In the seminarial part, using these theories' tools, the course explores some specific topics and key-issues of contemporary dynamics and discusses their theoretical and policy implications to understand the global political system and its development.
During the course we will try to link the theoretical debate with practical implementation through the illustration of concrete case studies and applied research.
Reference texts
Joseph M. Grieco, G. John Ikenberry, Michael Mastanduno (2019, 2nd ed.) Introduction to International Relations: Perspectives, Connections, and Enduring Questions, MacMillan, London.

Assigned readings. It is essential to read the assigned texts for the session before coming to class, if/when such a class is scheduled.
Educational objectives
Objective of the course is to develop a general understanding of the concepts, theories, and methodological toolkits associated with the study of international politics; to know the main theories in international relations and to develop analytical skills to read, understand, and criticize the scholarly literature in these fields; to understand how the international political system interacts with the economic and institutional system; to make connections between theory and practice, past and present, expectations and reality; to develop a critical sense of how best to alternate between the various theoretical approaches; to apply what students have learned in class about IR theory to real international politics problems via class discussions.
Prerequisites: Basic Knowledge of Political Science
Teaching methods
Lectures are supplemented with seminars and short courses with invited experts. Readings on case studies and specific topics will be also provided. Through lectures and readings, discussions, individual and group exercises, this course intends to provide the conceptual tools and methodological skills that will enable the student to form her/his critical judgments about some topical issues in IR. Students are expected to play an active role in class and carefully study and prepare all class assignments.
Other information
Attending students are required to complete in advance the reading of material as it is assigned.
After the first introductory lectures, students are expected to prepare short reports (about 2 pages) on each of the lectures that make up the thematic seminars/short courses. The reports are due the week following the week in which the thematic seminar/short course was held.
In the final part of the course, students will be asked to present a topic in the classroom based on the assigned readings.
An end-of-course paper on that topic is the final step (final draft min 4000-max 6000 words long or 10 pages with font 12, single-spaced).

Evaluation criteria for attending students:
-Active participation in class and oral presentations: 20%.
-Weekly written comments: 25%
-Final paper:55%
Learning verification modality
Exams will assess the theoretical awareness about the main issues in contemporary international relations; the ability to debate them critically; and apply the explanatory strategies of the theories studied to empirical cases.
Attending student: Oral presentation during the course and Final Essay on a specific topic discussed in the seminars.
Non-attending student: Oral exam.

Grade Breakdown:
Attending students (i.e. those who have attended at least 80% of the lessons): Written reports (20%) Oral presentation (20%), Class Participation (10%), Final Essay (50%)
Non-attending student: Oral exam (100%)
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