The Conduct of Inquiry in International Security: Theories and Methods (in englischer Sprache) (MR-1 Methoden und Ansätze zur Analyse des Regierens und MR-3 Frieden und Sicherheit)


The field of International Relations (IR) helps us structure the field of international security studies to achieve a better understanding of what is going on in the world, what is known already and where the limits of our knowledge of the world are. The application of certain IR concepts makes it easier for us to read a newspaper, but it also facilitates the analysis of a complex political problem by using certain methods. However, different meta-theoretical stances lead to conflicting sets of theories and mutually exclusive methodologies. Against this background, the seminar will first discuss different views of how social scientific inquiry is supposed to be conducted. Subsequently, a thorough look at the philosophy of science will be taken, allowing the members of the seminar a deeper understanding of the great debates in IR and international security. Finally, different theoretical approaches will be discussed and scrutinized with regards to their methodological implications.




Final grade: participation (30%), oral presentation (30%), written presentation (40%).


Jackson, Patrick Thaddaeus 2011: The Conduct of Inquiry in International Relations. Philosophy of science and its implications for the study of world politics. London/New York: Routledge.