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International Relations Department
London School of Economics &
Political Science
Houghton Street
London WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom


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MSc Course Videos

Short introductory videos are available from the Course Co-ordinators of several of the MSc courses on the Department's degree programmes.

Please note not all courses will be running every year.  Please check here for availability. 

You can also watch all the videos below as a YouTube playlist here or an iTunes U playlist or on LSE IR Department audio and video channel.

IR467 (Half Unit) International Political Economy of the Environment
Dr Robert Falkner


This course is intended primarily for MSc International Political Economy. An introduction to concepts and issues in the study of international environmental politics, with special emphasis on the political economy of environmental protection.


This course is compulsory for the MSc International Relations & MSc International Relations (Research) and for students taking MSc International Relations as part of the LSE-Sciences Po Double Degree in Affaires Internationales. It is not available to students on any other degree programme. The course provides an historical and theoretical analysis of core concepts in International Relations, of the normative and analytic issues involved, and of their relationship to the social sciences in general.


This course covers the ways in which international actors formulate decisions and strategies for dealing with other members of the international community. Critical examination of theoretical perspectives on foreign policy, involving the analysis of the foreign policy behaviour of a broad range of states through selective use of case studies.


IR416 The EU in the World
Professor Karen Smith


This course covers the development of the external activities of the European Communities since 1957, including the development of European Political Cooperation and the Common Foreign and Security Policy. The relationship between the member states and these external activities, in particular the impact of the evolution of EU institutions and policies on national foreign policies.


This course covers the international political experience of major powers and post-colonial states in a region beset by recurrent conflict and external intervention during the Cold War and subject to a novel multilateralism in its wake. The inter-linkages between the global, regional and local; the interests and role of the US; foreign and security policies of the major regional powers in relation to East Asia-Pacific; the impact of the legacy of colonialism and external intervention; the sources of bilateral and intra-regional conflict; the problem of regional order with reference to East and South-East Asia; the emergence and development of regional institutions.


The course is intended to provide an analysis of the regional politics of the Middle East since 1918, and of their interaction with problems of international security, global resources and great power/super power/hyperpower politics.


This course is intended for those interested in theoretical and practical approaches to the question of peace, the problems of conflict and violence, and responses to them particularly in the form of liberal peacebuilding and statebuilding.


This course enables students to gain an in-depth understanding of the nature of economic diplomacy. The course focuses on decision making and negotiating processes in international economic relations and includes, as an integral part of the course, an opportunity for a dialogue with a range of senior policy practitioners and simulation of negotiations.


The course places the development of EU policy-making in its international context. It examines the impact of the external factors on the evolution of common policies and the external impact of common policies.


This course examines EU enlargement from the point of view of International Relations. The principal aim is to understand the interplay between enlargement, EU foreign policy and wider geopolitics. With this in mind enlargement is considered both as an act of European foreign policy and as a phenomenon impacting on the foreign policies of other states and actors.


The course covers the main explanatory and normative approaches to international relations theory. The purpose of the course is to provide a thorough background in all schools of International Relations theory and the debates between them regarding their view on the nature of international relations and how this is to be conceptualised, understood and judged. 


IR445 China and the World
Professor William Callahan


This course will provide students with an historical overview of the development of Chinese foreign and security policy, the theoretical concepts used for analysing the making of Chinese foreign policy, and an up-to-date survey of China's evolving relations around the world.


IR450 International Political Economy
Professor Jeffrey Chwieroth


An advanced introduction to concepts and contending approaches in international political economy, and an overview of the evolution of international economic relations since the late nineteenth century.


The course focuses on the role of Islam in world politics, posing two inter-related questions: First, how can we explain the varying nature and strength of Islam as a discursive and mobilisational force in international relations? Second, how should we understand the impact of changes in international relations on the institutions, authority structures, and identities associated with Islam?


Course content: The background to International Political Theory; the moral standing of the state; international human rights; critiques of human rights and universal values; the ethics of war and violence; international humanitarianism; international law and international politics; global social justice.


The course will involve both theoretical explorations of the nature and prehistory of 'humanitarianism' and empirical examples of claimed 'humanitarian interventions' (such as Bosnia, Kosovo and East Timor) along with cases where it is claimed interventions should have taken place (such as Rwanda 1994) and others where humanitarianism has been combined with geo-strategic motivations.


An introduction to the politics of the creation and implementation of international law, intended for non-lawyers. The course focuses on the areas of international law most relevant to International Political Theory.


IR466 (Half Unit) Genocide
Dr Jens Meierhenrich


This seminar course provides an introduction to the study of genocide. The course's disciplinary ambit ranges from anthropology to economics, from history to law, and from political science to sociology.


The course focuses on the foreign policy of the EU and of EU member states towards Arab-Israeli relations (with a special emphasis on Palestinian-Israeli relations), in comparison with the US foreign policy. The main focus will be on the European perspective, but it would be impossible to analyse this subject without taking into account the US position and, to some extent, Transatlantic relations.


The course covers the various factors shaping Soviet, post-communist Russian and Eurasian foreign and security policy. It explores both the traditional foreign policy and security issues, such as the arms race and Détente, the role of the military, economic power projection, etc., as well as new soft power and security factors shaping policy, such as transnational civil society, sub-national regionalization, transnational ethnic and cultural networks, migration, the role of ideas, norms and norm entrepreneurs, etc.