Course 2017-2018 a.y.



Department of Social and Political Sciences

Course taught in English

Go to class group/s: 23
BIG (8 credits - I sem. - OB  |  SPS/04)
Course Director:

Classes: 23 (I sem.)

Course Objectives

The course provides models, tools and insights to understand the international context by integrating economic analysis with the major theories of International Relations. The course is organized in two parts.
The first part deals with the global challenges to international relations related to conflict. We analyze the incentives to enter conflict of various kinds by State and non State actors, and the necessary modification of our perspective with the growing role of civil wars and mass displacements.
The last part focuses on the contribution of IR theories to the understanding of the European integration process, the functioning of the European Institutions, the desirability and functioning of different types of international organizations, and finally the problems related to migration processes and different immigration policies.

Intended Learning Outcomes
Click here to see the ILOs of the course

Course Content Summary

  • Introduce international relations theory: state systems in historical perspective; the realistic perspective: from Thucidides to Hobbes and Machiavelli; the security dilemma.
  • The liberal perspective: from Locke to Kant, liberal peace.
  • Liberal theory and practical implications for democratic and capitalist peace.
  • Rationalist theories on the reasons for war. From interstate wars to civil wars.
  • International relations before and after WW II.
  • History of European integration after World War II.
  • Intergovernmentalism, functionalism, chain reaction, economic integration, and road blocks to political integration.

Teaching methods
Click here to see the teaching methods

Assessment methods
Click here to see the assessment methods

Detailed Description of Assessment Methods

Students can take a midterm partial exam in October and a second partial exam at the end of the course, or else take a general final exam. Written exams with open questions.


  • A. Kydd, International Relations Theory, 2016.
  • In addition, many papers are made available on e-learning space.
Exam textbooks & Online Articles (check availability at the Library)
Last change 12/06/2017 12:30