Global Security Program Concentration
The Global Security concentration introduces you to the causes and dynamics of peace and security to prepare you for a role in preventing, managing, and resolving conflict. As a student, you will grapple with issues such as grand strategy, alliance formation, defense planning, civil-military relations, and war termination as well as conflict interventions that mitigate violence and prevent escalation.
In addition to core courses, students who select the Global Security concentration will take:
- Causes of War
What factors and conditions explain patterns of peace and conflict in a global system of political, social, and economic actors competing for power, influence, and advantage? To answer this question, this course introduces graduate students to core concepts, paradigms, and seminal debates from security studies broadly defined. The purpose is to establish a foundation for investigating the causes and dynamics of conflict at the interstate, regional, and global levels of analysis. This perspective integrates theory and practice, enabling you to contextualize and assess the strategies actors employ to advance their interests as well the underlying structural and configurational constraints shaping how these actors make decisions.
- Security from Inside the State
How do politics, organizations, and the policy processes inside states create conditions for peace and conflict? To what extent do regime type, the perceptions of leaders, and past history influence a state’s security goals in the international system? This course will enable you to answer these questions by understanding and applying core concepts from security studies, domestic politics, and foreign policy. In other words, this course uses characteristics from inside a state as a tool for understanding security relations between states and their abilities to identify, prevent, and resolve conflict.
- Conflict Assessment and Prevention
International conflicts and crises have sometimes been seen as essential events whose outcome determines subsequent geopolitical arrangements. On the other hand, the humanitarian and other costs of such conflicts have helped give rise to the concepts and operations of conflict prevention. In order to better prevent conflict, methods of assessing its likelihood, causes, and dynamics have been developed. The course therefore explores the methods and challenges of preventing the outbreak of armed conflict. Contemporary approaches to the assessment of conflict are surveyed: Conflict assessment frameworks used by different organizations incorporate a variety of theoretical assumptions and empirical tools in order to gain a better understanding of the causes of violent conflict. The course also explores challenges of predicting the outbreak of conflict through the exploration of the early warning concepts and instruments and the challenge of moving from early warning to preventive action. Students also consider cases of successful and unsuccessful prevention as practiced by national governments, NGOs, civil society organizations, the United Nations, and regional political organizations.