Univ of Southern California
University of Southern California
black horizontal bar for print styles
Please note: Due to late revisions, some text on this page differs from what appears in the printed version of the USC Catalogue. The changes appear below as highlighted text, with corresponding explanations appearing in the right margin.

International Relations

Courses of Instruction

International Relations (IR)
The terms indicated are expected but are not guaranteed. For the courses offered during any given term, consult the Schedule of Classes.

IR 100xg The United States and World Affairs (4, Fa) The changing character of contemporary international political issues from the Cold War to the future and U.S. foreign policy options for the future; exploration of competing perspectives. Not available for major credit. Concurrent enrollment: WRIT 140.

IR 101xg International Relations (4, Sp) Basic concepts of world affairs for non-majors. Development of competency to understand and critically evaluate global relations and international events, stressing empirical approaches. Not available for major credit. Concurrent enrollment: WRIT 140.

IR 210 International Relations: Introductory Analysis (4, Fa) Comprehensive introduction to contending theoretical and analytical approaches; development of critical, evaluative, cognitive, and analytical competencies regarding historical and contemporary issues. (Required for all IR majors and minors.)

IR 211 International Relations: Approaches to Research (4, Sp) Introduction to theoretically oriented research approaches and designs, emphasizing the logics of argumentation involved. (Required for all IR majors.) Prerequisite: IR 210.

IR 212 Historical Approaches to International Relations (4, Sp) Introduction to historical research methods, emphasizing historical texts and modes of discourse. Prerequisite: IR 210.

IR 213 The Global Economy (4, Fa) Economic concepts necessary to understand modern global economy. Topics include transition economies, global inequality, environmental issues, international political economy, trade and the international financial system. Prerequisite: IR 210.

IR 302 International Relations of the Great Powers in the Late 19th and 20th Centuries (4, Irregular) Introductory analysis of the interactions of the great powers during the period; initial focus on Europe, with expansion to include global relations.

IR 303 Leadership and Diplomacy (4, Fa) The role of leaders, diplomatic leadership and creativity in statecraft, providing a deep understanding of the theoretical and practical dimensions of diplomacy.

IR 304 Espionage and Intelligence (4, Sp) The role and evolution of espionage and intelligence as tools of statecraft are examined. Open, covert, clandestine, counterintelligence programs and oversight processes are considered.

IR 305 Managing New Global Challenges (4, Sp) Examines strategies for managing global issues in the post Cold War period. Explores ways that international institutions, national governments and non-state actors work separately and together to provide order and control over complex international issues areas. Issues that will receive attention could include financial and monetary relations, trade and foreign investment, preservation of the environment, the spread of weapons of mass destruction, population and migration, terrorism and ethnic strife.

IR 306 International Organizations (4, Fa) The emergence of international organizations as a permanent feature in world politics; role of the United Nations organization as well as regional international organizations.

IR 307 Contemporary International Politics (4, FaSp) Recent events, forces, and conditions in the international political system. Basic organizing concepts used in the analysis of the data of international politics.

IR 308 Globalization: Issues and Controversies (4, Sp) People, money, things, information, and ideas flow across national borders. How can we understand globalization, its consequences, and how to manage it? Multimedia training is provided.

IR 309 Global Governance (4, Fa) Introduction to global governance structure and institutions. Exploration of the appropriate role for states, international organizations, civil society and individuals within the global governance structure.

IR 310 Introduction to Peace and Conflict Studies (4, Sp) Interdisciplinary study of the pursuit of peace, including causes of wars, arms races, conflict resolution, peace movements, domestic violence, nonviolent resistance, and peace with justice.

IR 315 Ethnicity and Nationalism in World Politics (4, Irregular) Ethnic identity and nation formation in the global society of states; nation-states; conflict or political accommodation within multinational states; impact of dispersed nations on interstate relations.

IR 316 Gender and Global Issues (4, Sp) An examination of the role women have played in world politics focusing on issues of war and peace, the environment and the global economy.

IR 318 Conflict Resolution and Peace Research (4, Fa) Processes of conflict, violence, change, integration, stability, and peace in world society, analyzed primarily through the literature of the peace research movement.

IR 323 Politics of Global Environment (4, Sp) Examines the politics of managing the global environment. The nature of ecosystems, common problems, population and resource utilization problems along with biodiversity and global governance are emphasized.

IR 324 Multinational Enterprises and World Politics (4, Sp) Political implications of interactions between different types of multinational enterprises and all levels of U.S. government, other industrial nations, and less-developed countries.

IR 325 Rich and Poor States in the World Political Economy (4, Sp) Dynamic inequality in relations between rich and poor; contending views on causes; legacies of imperialism; ameliorative strategies of poor states; responses of richer states.

IR 326 U.S. Foreign Economic Policy (4, Irregular) The U.S. economy and political-economic institutions in comparative perspective; economic diplomacy and policy; role of trade barriers, exchange rates, foreign aid, energy, foreign investment.

IR 327 International Negotiation (4, FaSp) A practical course designed to improve your negotiation skills. Ideas for diagnosing situations and identifying strategies, which you apply in case studies and personal exercises. (Duplicates credit in former IR 405.) Recommended preparation: two IR courses.

IR 330 Politics of the World Economy (4, Fa) Introduction to the relationship between political and economic development and ideas concerning the origins and behavior of capitalism and its impact on international relations.

IR 333 China in International Affairs (4, Sp) Economic reform, the open door, and China’s changing role in the international system. Relations with the United States, Japan, and other key powers in Asia. Tensions between the interests of American business and the human rights community over China policy.

IR 337 The Impact of Remittances on Development in Mexico (4, Sm) Examines the nature of remittances and their effects. Can remittances promote development? Explores policy making focused on improving the quality of remittance expenditures in Mexico. Recommended preparation: working ability with Spanish.

IR 341 Foreign Policy Analysis (4, Irregular) Basic concepts and analytical approaches in the study of decision-making at the international level. This is a case-based class, requiring participation of students in interactive discussions of decision forcing and retrospective foreign policy cases.

IR 343 U.S. Foreign Policy since World War II (4, Irregular) Analysis of U.S. foreign policy since 1945 as a basis for understanding significant new trends. Explanation of contemporary issues in U.S. relations with other nations.

IR 344 Developing Countries in World Politics (4, Irregular) Origin, concepts, realities, and ideals of the non-aligned movement, focusing on the United States’ role in the developing world.

IR 345 Russian and Soviet Foreign Policy (4) Overview of Soviet and Russian foreign policy in the 20th century. Review of the diplomatic history of the period and introduction to models of foreign policy used to analyze Soviet and Russian behavior.

IR 346 Foreign Policy of Eastern Europe and the Balkans (4, Fa) Analysis of contemporary foreign policy issues in East-Central Europe, including inter- and intra-state conflict, peacekeeping, NATO and EU enlargement, cross-border minorities and refugees.

IR 358 The Asia Pacific in World Affairs (4, Sp) The cultural, political, economic, and social aspects of the Asia Pacific’s rise to prominence in world affairs. Reasons for the “successes” of many Asian economies and the environmental and social problems accompanying their rapid transformation. The difficulties of interaction in complex cultural situations illustrated by participation in a computer-assisted simulation.

IR 360 International Relations of the Pacific Rim (4, Irregular) Political, economic, military, and territorial issues in East Asia and the Pacific and the role of the United States, Russia, China and Japan.

IR 361 South and Southeast Asia in International Affairs (4, Sp) The historical, cultural, and political reasons for Asia’s dramatic transformation into a powerful engine of world economic growth. The secondary consequences of economic growth for environmental protection, gender relations, ethnicity, and military tension.

IR 362 The International Relations of the Contemporary Middle East (4, Fa) Introduction to problems and issues in the Middle East today: religio-ethnic rivalries, conflicting nationalisms and ideologies, the Arab-Israeli conflict, Middle East oil.

IR 363 Middle East Political Economy (4, Sp) Examination of general economic development issues: population, agriculture, industrialization, trade, oil, etc. Several Mideast case study countries are then explored in depth.

IR 364 The Political Economy of Latin American Development (4, Fa) The main economic development themes and strategies in Latin America over the past century. The interplay between domestic and international variables, and the resulting dynamic changes.

IR 365 Politics and Democracy in Latin America (4, Fa) Examines Latin America’s experience with democracy emphasizing events since the 1980s. Analyzes the roles of interest groups, ideology, domestic politics, bureaucratic processes, perceptions and analogical reasoning.

IR 366 Mexico and its Relations with the United States (4) Analysis of Mexico and U.S.-Mexico relations, both historically and in the present day, to understand better the challenges in this key bilateral relationship.

IR 367 Africa in International Affairs (4, Fa) General overview of main historical, political, and economic issues as they affect Africa, focusing on nationalism, development, and superpower competition in Africa.

IR 368 French Foreign Policy: 1945 to the Present (4, Irregular) Introduction to historical, thematic perspectives of French foreign policy since 1945 including review of external and internal constraints influencing foreign policy.

IR 369 Contemporary European International Relations (4) European interstate conflict and cooperation since 1945; history of Western European integration during the Cold War; the European Union in post-Cold War Europe.

IR 371 Global Civil Society: Non-Governmental Organizations in World Politics (4) Transnational activists and non-governmental organizations in world politics. How they affect humanity and the development of liberal and social democracy.

IR 376 U.S.-Japan Encounters: War, Trade, and Culture (4, Fa) The significance of U.S.-Japan relations is addressed through historical and policy analysis of America, Japan, and the Asia-Pacific region.

IR 381 Introduction to International Security (4) Alternative conceptions of security; evolution of nuclear strategy; efforts to control the development and spread of nuclear and conventional weapons; current security issues.

IR 382 Order and Disorder in Global Affairs (4, Fa) Modern and post-modern perspectives on changes in the inter-state system, relations among cultures and civilizations, the conditions of ecologically sustainable human development. Prerequisite: IR 100x, IR 101x or IR 210.

IR 383 Third World Negotiations (4, Fa) Origins, intensity, management and/or resolution of regional conflicts in developing countries and the role and intervention of great powers.

IR 384 Introduction to Asian Security (4, Irregular) Introduction to key security trends in Asia-Pacific, emphasizing strategic competition between U.S., Russia, and China; regional military capabilities; rise of neutrality politics.

IR 385 European Foreign Policy and Security Issues (4, Irregular) Western European foreign policy and defense issues; consensus and trends underscoring political and strategic change and policy alternatives in postwar European alliances. Course will rely heavily on case teaching approach.

IR 386 International Terrorism and Liberal Democracy (4, Fa) Examination of the nexus of terrorist threat and governmental response. Specifically, the class analyzes both terrorism’s effectiveness as a means to achieve political change and the challenges faced by the liberal democratic state in responding to international terrorist campaigns.

IR 389 Islam in France (4, Fa) (Paris Semester only) Historical overview of interactions between Muslims and Europeans. Islam: origins, history and circumstances that led to its revival. France’s immigration policy.

IR 390 Special Problems (1-4) Supervised, individual studies. No more than one registration permitted. Enrollment by petition only.

This new course is available beginning fall 2011.

IR 401 The United Nations and World Order (4) The contribution of the United Nations to world order, focusing on its history, principal organs, relationships with global actors, and prospects for reform.

IR 402 Theories of War (4, Irregular) Theories of war tested in historical cases; the obsolescence of war as a rational choice, and problems that still result in war. Prerequisite: IR 210.

IR 403 Transnational Diplomacy and Global Security (4, Sp) Explores emerging “diplomatic” relations between nation-states and transnational (non-state) entities, such as non-governmental organizations (NGOs), in the development of global peace and security policies. Recommended preparation: IR 303.

IR 404 International Relations Policy Task Force (4, Sp) Addresses unfinished question of public policy. Provides experience in interviewing and field research, oral presentation and collective discussion and deliberation. Open to juniors and seniors only.

IR 408 Global Democratization (4, Sp) Exploration of the global experience with democracy. Meaning of the term “democracy,” explanations of the rise and fall of democracy, its current trends and future challenges.

IR 422 Ecological Security and Global Politics (4, Irregular) Should environmental issues be treated as threats to security? Survey of recent literature explores global environmental politics using a security framework. Prerequisite: IR 210 and/or environmental studies course work.

IR 424 Citizenship and Migration in International Politics (4, Fa) Changing notions of citizenship in the context of history, and of economic, political and sociological theories of international migration; diaspora and migration case studies.

IR 426 Trade Politics in the Western Hemisphere (4, Sp) Focus on the dynamic process of trade integration that has occurred since the mid-1980s in the Western Hemisphere.

IR 427 Seminar on Economics and Security (4, Sp) Introduction to important economic issue areas that are understood as security-related in the contemporary world: food, trade, debt, etc.

IR 430 The Politics of International Trade (4, Fa) Economic approaches and political processes are used to explain observed international trade policy choices. Topics covered include globalization, regionalism, labor standards, the environment and sanctions. Recommended preparation: ECON 450, IR 330.

IR 438 Nationalism and Ethnic Conflict after Communism (4, Sp) Explores origins and nature of ethnic strife among post-socialist states (ethnicity and national revival, modern histories of East-Central Europe and Russia, problems and conflict resolution).

IR 439 Political Economy of Russia and Eurasia (4, Irregular) Interaction of politics and economics in the former Soviet Union and its component republics; the historical planned economy, the politics of reform and the political economy of former Soviet foreign relations.

IR 441 Comparative Analysis of Foreign Policy (4, Sp) Comparative analysis of foreign policy determinants and decision-making; empirical emphasis.

IR 442 Japanese Foreign Policy (4, Fa) Economic, political, territorial, and security issues; foreign policy decision-making; relations with major powers and neighboring states.

IR 443 Formulation of U.S. Foreign Policy (4, Sp) Critical discussion of alternative approaches explaining the formulation and implementation of U.S. foreign policy: domestic politics, organizational processes, group dynamics, individual personality and perception.

IR 444 Issues and Theories in Global Society (4, Fa) Why the world is organized into sovereign nation-states. The challenges to nation-states in the 21st century from globalization, democratization, revolution, technology, and new forms of cultural identity.

IR 445 U.S. Defense and Foreign Policy: Nonproliferation and Weapons of Mass Destruction (4, Sm) Policies and programs aimed at stopping the spread of weapons of mass destruction. Presentations by executive/legislative officials involved in formulation and implementation of non-proliferation. Junior or senior standing required.

IR 454 The International Political Economy of Development (4, Fa) Provides a critical introduction to scholarship on international political economy (IPE), the interaction of states and markets in a global context.

This new course is available beginning fall 2011.

IR 463 Islam and Arab Nationalism (4) Historical, sociological and political processes that have shaped the emergence of and relationship between Arab nationalism and political Islam since the early 20th century.

IR 464 U.S. Policy Towards the Middle East: 1950 to the Present (4) The role of the United States in Middle Eastern affairs after the creation of the state of Israel.

IR 465 Contemporary Issues in United States-Latin America Relations (4, Sp) Examines major issues in the relationship between the United States and the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean, including trade and financial questions, security, immigration, the environment, narcotics, etc. Major bilateral relations (especially with Mexico, Brazil, and the Caribbean Basin countries) are emphasized, as are regional and multilateral relationships.

IR 466 Contemporary Issues in Latin American Politics (4, Fa) Focus on current politics in Latin America. Address a range of themes: electoral democracy, citizenship, political inclusion, human rights, corruption, economic inequality.

IR 468 European Integration (4, Sp) Research on the European Union’s role in European international relations; internal EU developments since 1985 as an actor in the world economy.

IR 470 Comparative Regionalism (4, Fa) Analysis of the factors that provide different forms of regional arrangements in different parts of the world. Prerequisite: IR 210.

IR 483 War and Diplomacy: The U.S. in World Affairs (4, Irregular) Perspective on recent American foreign policy; a case study of conflicting literature on the origins, development and legacy of the Cold War.

IR 484 American Religion, Foreign Policy and the News Media (4, Sp) (Enroll in JOUR 484)

IR 490x Directed Research (2-8, max 8, FaSpSm) Individual research and readings. Not available for graduate credit.

IR 491x Field Study (1-8, max 8, FaSpSm) Local, national, and international internships. Not available for graduate credit.

IR 494 Honors Thesis Seminar (4, Fa) Preparation and oral defense of senior honors thesis before supervising faculty and fellow honors students. (Duplicates credit in former IR 493b.) Senior status and acceptance to program required. Prerequisite: IR 210, IR 211.

IR 499 Special Topics (2-4, max 8) Selected topics in various special areas within international relations, which may vary from semester to semester or within semesters.

IR 500 International Relations Theory (4, Fa) Development of organized knowledge of international relations. Main currents of thought and varieties of current literature.

IR 501 International Relations Theory: Advanced (4, Sp) Examines the specialized nomenclature of international relations and the varied interpretations of basic concepts of international theory; conceptual analysis and criticism.

IR 502 Conflict and Cooperation (4, Fa) Against the background of 20th century history this course introduces the major literatures on the causes, strategy, practice, and future possibilities of war and peace.

IR 503 Theories of Diplomacy (4, Sp) Investigation of international relations through the lens of diplomatic theories, considering the limits and potential of diplomacy and how thinking about diplomacy has evolved.

IR 507 Gender and International Relations (4, Irregular) An examination of gender and culture in world society. Feminist perspectives on and critiques of various approaches to international relations theories.

IR 509 Culture, Gender, and Global Society (4, 2 years, Sp) Cultural and gendered responses to economic globalization; topics include culture and security, identity politics, clashes of and accommodations among civilizations, modernity, post-modernity and world society.

IR 512 Linkage Politics (4) (Enroll in POSC 512)

IR 513 Social Science and Historical Research Methods: Introduction to Research Design (2 or 4, Sp) Introduction to problems in philosophy of science, epistemology, historical and historiographical inquiry, leading to development of elementary research design capabilities.

IR 514 Multivariate Analysis (4, Fa) Causal inference and modeling in international relations and political science; assumptions and problems of multivariate regression analysis in both cross-sectional and time series cases.

IR 515 Qualitative Research Design (4) A practical seminar in which to develop a dissertation proposal. Covers casual inference and comparative case study designs; single-case designs; selecting cases; interviewing; combining quantitative and qualitative methods. Recommended preparation: IR 513, one course in statistics, and enough substantive study to identify a likely dissertation topic.

IR 516 Advanced Research Methods: Text, Talk and Context (4, Sp) Text and discourse analysis methods and strategies. Themes include the roles of ideas, identities, policies and interests in various institutional contexts Prerequisite: COMM 550, IR 494, IR 513, POSC 500, PUBD 500 or PUBD 502.

IR 517 International Policy Analysis (4, Sp) Game theory and other methodologies applied to the study of international relations. Topics include global and regional public goods, collective action, externalities, treaty information, market failures.

IR 519 Field Research Methods in Comparative Politics and International Studies (4, Sp) Intended for graduate students planning social science research projects in a foreign country. Primary goal is to assist students to prepare the design for their dissertation research.

IR 521 Introduction to Foreign Policy Analysis (4, Sp) Survey of principal theoretical and empirical approaches to foreign policy analysis; bureaucratic politics, cybernetics, game theory and options analysis, comparison, design theory, simulation.

IR 522 United States Diplomacy since 1945: Issues and Decisions (4, Sp) An analysis of United States foreign policy with emphasis on the origins and structure of the cold war, decision-making, the role of ideology, containment and imperialism, and issues of the post-bipolar era.

IR 525 State and Society in International Relations (4, Fa) A readings seminar that assesses the challenges to nation-states and world order presented by trans-border cultural flows, new technologies, and changing patterns of political participation.

IR 526 Migration and Diaspora in International Politics (4, Sp) Examines issues of migration, the relationship between citizen and state, economic factors triggering emigration/immigration, transnationalism, and explores the phenomenon of diasporas.

IR 531 Strategy and Arms Control (4) Impact of nuclear weapons on U.S. and U.S.S.R. postwar military policies and strategies; evolution of postwar deterrence postures; development of superpower arms control since 1945.

IR 534 East Asian Security Issues (4) Security politics of China, Japan, ASEAN states, and Southwest Pacific nations; their strategic relations with the superpowers; regional security initiatives: nuclear-free zone politics, ZOPFAN, and indigenous military capacities. Prerequisite: IR 531.

IR 539 Seminar in International Politics – Conflict Processes (4, FaSp) Advanced seminar in international conflict, crisis and war. General perspectives on factors that bring about war and promote peace, with priority given to ethnopolitics. Open only to graduate students.

IR 540 Seminar in International Politics – Religion and Conflict (4, FaSp) Advanced introduction to how religion has emerged as a powerful force in politics. Conflict resolution, fundamentalism, terrorism, war, American foreign policy and global civil society. Open only to graduate students.

IR 541 Politics of the World Economy (4) Survey of approaches to international political economy. Intellectual roots; the management of collective goods; North-South relations are examined.

IR 542 Foreign Economic Policies of Industrial Capitalist States (4, Fa) Seminar comparing policies of Britain, France, Germany, Japan, and the United States; evaluation of alternative research methods and theories; design and execution of an original project.

IR 543 Politics of International Monetary and Trade Relations (4, Irregular) Political analysis of international monetary and trade relations; emphasis on interactions among industrialized nations.

IR 545 The International Political Economy of Development (4, Fa) The political aspects of economic growth, efficiency and distribution are explored for underdeveloped nations in an international relations context.

IR 547 Political Economy of Global Space and Environment (4, Irregular) Regimes in an anarchic world will be examined to assess ways oceans, atmosphere, outerspace, and other unowned spaces or resources are and can be used.

IR 550 Economic Bargaining Theory and Practice (4, Irregular) Development of analytical skills and strategies for negotiations over economic and political problems, through study of recent cases and participation in bilateral and multilateral exercises.

IR 551 International Political Economy of the Pacific Rim (4) Introduces issues related to political economy of the Pacific Rim; trade, investment and development strategies of these countries. The role of Japan’s increasing economic power and that of the changing U.S.–Japan relations and their implications to the rest of the Pacific Rim region.

IR 553 Political Economy of Global Telecommunication and Information (4, Sp) (Enroll in COMM 553)

IR 556 Latin America and U.S. Foreign Policy (4, Irregular) Latin American challenges to U.S. policymakers; U.S. success in achieving its goals; alternative explanations of U.S. behavior.

IR 557 Africa and U.S. Foreign Policy (4) Research problems on international issues arising from the emergence of Africa.

IR 561 Japanese Foreign Policy and International Relations of East and Southeast Asia (4) Research problems in political, economic, and security issues in East and Southeast Asia, with special emphasis on the role of Japan.

IR 563 Chinese Foreign Policy (4) Research problems in political, economic, military, and ideological issues.

IR 581 International Relations of the Middle East (4, Fa) Salient issues in regional politics such as colonialism, nationalism, identity, religion, development, and war are examined.

IR 590 Directed Research (1-12, FaSpSm) Research leading to the master’s degree. Maximum units which may be applied to the degree to be determined by the department. Graded CR/NC.

IR 591 Field Study (1-12, FaSpSm) Study of contemporary institutions in selected regions of the world. Maximum units which may be applied to the degree to be determined by the department.

IR 594abz Master’s Thesis (2-2-0, FaSpSm) Credit on acceptance of thesis. Graded IP/CR/NC.

IR 599 Special Topics (2-4, max 8) Subjects specifically relevant to an international relations field, sometimes conducted as intensive short-courses.

IR 790 Research (1-12, FaSpSm) Research leading to the doctorate. Maximum units which may be applied to the degree to be determined by the department. Graded CR/NC.

IR 791 Advanced Studies (2-4, max 12) Subjects specifically relevant to an international relations field; conducted for Ph.D. students, sometimes conducted as intensive short courses.

IR 794abcdz Doctoral Dissertation (2-2-2-2-0, FaSp) Credit on acceptance of dissertation. Graded IP/CR/NC.