Diplomacy and Challenges

This information is for the 2016/17 session.

Teacher responsible

Prof Michael Cox TW1.9.01A


This course is compulsory on the MSc in International Strategy and Diplomacy. This course is not available as an outside option.

Course content

This course looks at six key aspects of diplomacy: the tools of diplomacy, both old and new; the arts of diplomatic and business negotiation; how different types of crisis have been resolved; in-depth discussions of a major current international problem; the challenges ahead, including flashpoints; preventative action and crisis management.


20 hours of seminars, 6 hours of seminars, 1 hour and 30 minutes of seminars and 7 hours and 30 minutes of seminars in the LT. 2 hours of seminars in the ST.

Formative coursework

One formative essay (2,000 words) with a pre-arranged title. Feedback will involve a meeting with each student to discuss their formative essay. We will aim to ensure that students are able to:

• Critically evaluate different kinds of evidence;

• Assess the strengths and weaknesses of competing explanatory paradigms;

• Formulate arguments in a coherent and balanced fashion.

Indicative reading

1. Bayne, N.; Woolcock, S. (eds.) (2012), The New Economic Diplomacy: Decision-Making and Negotiation in International Economic Relations, Third Edition.

2. Berridge, G. R.; Keens-Soper, M. (2001), Diplomatic Theory From Machiavelli To Kissinger (Studies in Diplomacy).

3. Burgess, P. (2010), Routledge Handbook of New Security Studies.

4. Cohen, R. (1997), Negotiating Across Cultures, Rev.ed.

5. Cooper, A.; Heine, J.; Thakur, R. (2013), Oxford Handbook of Modern Diplomacy.

6. Croker, C.; Hampson, F.; Aall (2004), Taming Intractable Conflicts.

7. Crocker, A.; Hampson, F.; Aall, P. (eds.) (2015), Managing Conflict in a World Adrift.

8. Freeman Jr, C. (1997), Arts of Power: Statecraft and Diplomacy.

9. Lebow, R.N. (1996), The Art of Bargaining.

10. Suhrke, A.; Berdal, M. (2011), The Peace In Between: Post-War Violence and Peacebuilding.

11. Taleb, N.N (2008), The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable.

12. Watkins, M.; Rosegrant, S. (2001), Breakthrough International Negotiations: How Great Negotiators Transformed the World's Toughest Post-War Conflicts.

13. Zartman, W.; Rubin, J. (2000), Power and Negotiation.


Project (100%, 3000 words) in the LT.

3.000 word assessed policy paper setting out a detailed strategy to implement a policy.

Student performance results

(2012/13 - 2014/15 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 27.7
Merit 63.9
Pass 8.4
Fail 0

Key facts

Department: International Relations

Total students 2015/16: 1

Average class size 2015/16: Unavailable

Controlled access 2015/16: No

Value: One Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information