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International Relations

Departmental website: lse.ac.uk/internationalRelations

Number of graduate students (full-time equivalent)
Taught: 200
Research: 52

Number of faculty: 36

REF: 88 per cent of the Department's research was rated world-leading or internationally excellent

Location: Clement House 

About the Department

International Relations has been taught at LSE since 1924 when Philip Noel-Baker was appointed to a new, privately-endowed Chair of International Relations. The Department, which was set up three years later, was not only the first of its kind, but has remained a leading world centre for the development of the subject ever since.

In the early years the Department drew heavily on other disciplines, in particular Diplomatic History and International Law; but in the 1960s the leadership passed to Geoffrey Goodwin and Fred Northedge, both of whom were graduates of the Department. They took the study of international relations into a new era, as well as helping to establish the Centre for International Studies in 1967, and the graduate programme in European Studies launched in 1972. They also helped found the student-run journal, Millennium: Journal of International Studies which is one of the most prestigious international relations journals.

The Department is also closely associated with the development of a specifically 'English School' of International Relations but does not endorse a particular orthodoxy. Our aim is to offer students a broad range of options including major theoretical perspectives on international relations, the study of conflict as well as conflict management, the work of the major international institutions, and the major regions of the world from Europe to the Middle East.

MPhil/PhD International Relations

We provide supervision for research leading to a PhD degree across the range of international relations fields. Its scale means that the research interests of its staff are wide-ranging, covering most aspects of the subject, and reflecting the rich choice of subjects on offer in its teaching.

The Department has particular strengths in political theory, international relations theory, international political economy, and European studies. As well as Europe, its area specialists cover Russia, Central, Northeast and Southeast Asia, the USA, South America, the Middle East and Africa. Other areas of research strength include foreign policy analysis, nationalism, religion, historical sociology, international environmental politics and international security. Many individuals contribute to more than one of these subjects, and there is quite a lot of linkage with colleagues in the Departments of Government and International History, as well as through the many research centres at the School.

You will also have the opportunity to attend research design workshops and weekly editorial board meetings of the student-run journal, Millennium: Journal of International Studies.

Taught programmes



MPhil/PhD International Relations
Visiting Research Students

Application code: M1ZR (MPhil/PhD), M1ER (VRS) (check availability)

Start date: 21 September 2017

Duration: MPhil/PhD 3 - 4 years (minimum 2), VRS up to 9 months (renewable)

Entry requirement: Merit in master’s degree with strong merit in the dissertation element in a subject relevant to proposed research, or equivalent

English requirement: Research

GRE/GMAT requirement: None

Fee level: See Tuition fees

Financial support: LSE PhD Studentships (see Financial support). ESRC funding (see Economic and Social Research Council)

Application deadline: 9 June 2017. However please note the funding deadline: 9 January 2017. Selection for funding is based on receipt of an application for a place – including all ancillary documents

Note: Your application should include a detailed research proposal, along with a short abstract (200 words maximum). Applicants are expected to look at the research interests of staff on the Department's web pages to ensure that their proposed area of research coincides with that of at least one member of staff. Those applicants being considered for a place on the programme will be interviewed by relevant members of staff prior to a final decision being made