School of Politics and International Relations

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International Relations

Researchers in this theme cover the broad range of IR but have also adopted a critical approach, and offer a wide-ranging regional expertise that is highly distinctive in the UK. SPIR’s IR scholars work within a critical, historical-sociological tradition, drawing on radical political economy, political theory and political geography. Their research transcends the comparative politics/ IR divide by investigating the interrelations between the international and national, particularly with respect to state formation, conflict, security and development in the developing world. In 2009 the School created the Centre for the Study of Global Security and Development with the Schools of Geography and Business Management.

Recent research has generated critical insights into global development (Ray Kiely), US foreign policy (JF Drolet, Bryan Mabee, Rick Saull), the domestic and international dynamics of revolution in Latin America ( James Dunkerley, Jeff Webber), international state-building and local governance in the Balkans and Southeast Asia (Adam Fagan, Lee Jones), transnational activism and economic and health governance interventions in Africa (Clive Gabay, Sophie Harman, David Williams), colonialism, slavery and the black diaspora (Robbie Shilliam), Arabian state formation and identity ( Chris Phillips), China’s rise (Ray Kiely, Rick Saull), and intervention and security in Southeast Asia (Lee Jones). Theoretical work has pioneered historical-sociological analysis of the international dimensions of right-wing thought and politics (JF Drolet, Rick Saull), and developed fresh understandings of hegemony (Rick Saull), enabling collaboration with staff working on related topics in different research themes (Tim Bale, Madeleine Davis, Mike Kenny, Clare Woodford).

Recent events organised by staff working in this theme include: Interpreting Contemporary African Protest; The Longue Durée of the Far-Right; Leadership in Global Health Governance; Political Economy, State Transformation and the New Security Agenda.

Staff active in the International Relations research group: 

Dr Jean-Francois Drolet; Prof James Dunkerley; Prof Adam Fagan; Dr Clive Gabay; Prof Montserrat Guibernau; Dr Sophie Harman;   Dr Lee Jones; Prof Ray Kiely; Dr Bryan Mabee; Dr Brendan O'Duffy; Dr Chris Phillips; Dr Rick Saull; Dr Robbie Shilliam; Dr Jeff Webber; Dr David Williams

Current research students: 

Sandra Carvalho, Kristin Ciupa, Matthias Ebenau, Mohammed Eltom, Saskia Fischer (co-supervised by Business & Management), Gina Floyd, Sofa Gradin, Aula Hariri, Matheus Lock Santos, Jenna Marshall, Daniel Nicholls, Andrew Reed, Megan Ryburn (co-supervised with Geography), Lan Schippers, Sue Serra Iamamoto, Mel Sirinathsingh, Thi Tran, Ahmed Waheed

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