Global Politics of Protest and Change

  • Summer schools
  • Department of International Development
  • Application code SS-IR250
  • Starting 2019
  • Short course: Open
  • Location: Houghton Street, London

Protest movements and populism from below; #Occupy and the Arab Spring; Al Qaeda and Islamic State; Black Lives Matter and Invisible Children; WikiLeaks and Twitter; fake news and compromats -  bottom-up forces are rapidly changing the face of global politics, which today involves much more than states and international institutions.

But who are the actors driving global change and what are their roles in global politics? What are their aims and power? What is the role of the media and new technologies in protest and change? And, crucially, what are the implications for global democracy, peace and global justice?

Session: Two
Dates: 8 July – 26 July 2019
Convenors: Professor Mary Kaldor and Dr Iavor Rangelov
Guest lecturers include: Dr Geoffrey Pleyers, Dr Sabine Selchow, civil society activists and practitioners.


Programme details

Key facts

Level: 200 level. Read more information on levels in our FAQs

Fees: Click here for information

Lectures: 36 hours 

Classes: 18 hours

Assessment*: Written work (40%) and one written examination (60%)

Typical credit**: 3-4 credits (US) 7.5 ECTS points (EU)

*Assessment is optional

**You will need to check with your home institution

More information on exams and credit


At least one introductory course in either social science (e.g. political science, international relations, sociology, economics), history, or law.

This is an intermediate level course and requires some basic knowledge in areas of politics, development, law, or international relations. It is particularly useful for students with a first degree, advanced undergraduates or those with practical experience in NGOs, multinational corporations or international organisations.

Programme structure

This course is unique in its bottom-up approach to the study of politics and social change, emphasising the role of human agency and activism in the process of globalisation.

Lectures in the course focus on specific issues ranging from political consumerism, new media and forms of protest, to the anti-capitalist movement and the ‘war on terror’.

The role of key global actors will be explored, including social movements and NGOs, nationalist and religious movements, the global media, global summits, multinational corporations, and institutions such as the International Criminal Court and the World Bank. 

Course outcomes

The course offers a unique opportunity for students to engage with some of the leading scholars in the study of globalisation and with activists and practitioners driving global change.


LSE’s Department of International Development promotes interdisciplinary postgraduate teaching and research on processes of social, political and economic development and change. The department is dedicated to understanding problems of poverty and late development within local communities, as well as national and international political and economic systems.   

Research and teaching in the department is concerned with the causes of poverty, social exclusion, economic stagnation, humanitarian crises and human security. Their aim is to provide students with an understanding of why and how some late developing countries have succeeded in overcoming these problems while others have not or have seen their progress derailed by disasters and conflicts. There are also research units that operate through the department. Faculty have considerable experience in living and working in the developing world and most have engaged in policy-relevant research and consultancy work with international development agencies or non-governmental organisations.             

On this three-week intensive programme, you will engage with and learn from full-time lecturers from the LSE’s international development faculty.

Reading materials

M. Kaldor, Global Civil Society: An Answer to War, Polity Press (2003).

IR250: Global Politics of Protest and Change Course Pack will be provided.

Students are encouraged to have a look at the Global Civil Society Yearbooks.

*A more detailed reading list will be supplied prior to the start of the programme

**Course content, faculty and dates may be subject to change without prior notice

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