TopGateway Course for the Politics and International Relations Specialization
Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy
National University of Singapore
Prof. Kanti Bajpai
This course provides a gateway to some of the key issues and principles of global and international affairs. It conceptualizes and contextualizes global public policy through the lens of the academic discipline of International Relations. The course is designed for students with little background in the field. Introductory sessions will cover core theories of International Relations as well as integrating concepts to help understand global public policy as a complex interplay between power and interests, institutions and norms, and diverse actors. Subsequent weeks will apply these ideas to three vital issue areas: security, insecurity, and war; global public goods such as financial order and health; and political systems with a focus on Singapore. The course is team-taught, with individual faculty members covering topics from their own research and policy interests. They will help to integrate and promote learning across topics.
Aims and objectives
The aim of this course is to help students to understand and explain major issues in global public policy from the broader perspective of International Relations.
The objectives are twofold:
to offer alternative theories and concepts to make sense of the most pressing global and regional challenges.
to appreciate the potential and limits of those frameworks in explaining key issues in global and international affairs.
Workloads, requirements and modes of assessment
This is a graduate seminar. It is readings intensive and active participation is expected in class discussions. Students must come to class having read the required readings. The benefits that students derive from graduate seminars are especially heavily dependent on vibrant and active in-class discussion and debates. The emphasis is on promoting interactivity and ‘deep learning’ through encouraging student participation. Students will therefore assume a larger stakeholder role in leading the learning process. More information on this will be provided in class.
Assessment in this course is entirely by continuous assessment.
1. A LONG research essay accounts for 50% of your total assessment.
Write one 3,500-4,000 word essay. This long essay will comprise 50% of the total mark.
Essays should only address questions distributed by me. Feel free to meet with me to discuss your essay, or any concerns you have generally. Since essay deadlines are advertised at the beginning of the semester, students are reminded to plan well ahead for completing their essays, given competing demands on your time and occasional clashing deadlines with other courses. Extensions will not be granted unless there are exceptional circumstances, such as illness or family emergency.
2. Class participation 10%: Students are expected to participate fully and actively in class discussions and activities every week.
3. Designated presentation 20%: Students delegated with responsibility to design and lead student activities in class in a particular week will be graded for their innovation, ability to critically engage with relevant course material, and promote interactivity with their classmates. Guidelines and criteria will be distributed in class
4. A short ‘reaction piece’ 20% on any topic of your choice: This essay should present your response to, and critique of the major arguments from that week’s readings. The essay should be between 1000 and 1250 words in length (double-spaced and typed). More details and sample papers are posted on IVLE
PLAGIARISM WARNING FOR WRITTEN ASSIGNMENTS
The LKY School’s Academic Code of Conduct lists academic integrity as one of six important values. According to this Code, we have agreed to ‘make every effort to understand what counts as plagiarism and why this is wrong’. To avoid giving the impression that you are passing off other people’s work as your own, you will need to acknowledge conscientiously the sources of information, ideas, and arguments used in your paper. For this purpose, you will use the ‘footnote style’ according to the Chicago Manual of Style, the guidelines for which can be found online at http://www.dianahacker.com/resdoc/p04_c10_s2.html
Introduction and Overview: Week 1 (Shopping Week Assoc Prof Heng Yee Kuang)
Global Public Policy in a Complex International System: Weeks 2-4
Week 2: The Distinctive Nature of International Relations (Assoc Prof. Heng Yee Kuang)
Andrew Hurrell, On Global Order: Power, Values, and the Constitution of International Society (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007), Chapter 1.
Helen Milner, “The Assumption of Anarchy in International Relations Theory: A Critique,” in David A. Baldwin, ed., Neorealism and Neoliberalism: The Contemporary Debate (New York: Columbia University Press, 1993), pp. 143-69.
Martin Wight, International Theory: The Three Traditions (London: Leicester University Press, 1994), Chapter 1.
Yee-Kuang Heng, Ghosts in the machine: Is IR eternally haunted by the spectre of old concepts?’ International Politics, Vol. 47 No. 5, September 2010, pp.535-556
Week 3: Foreign Policy Analysis in an age of complexity (Assoc Prof. Heng Yee Kuang)
A Acharya, Singapore's Foreign Policy, World Scientific, 2007, esp chapters on Intro and The Evolution of Singapore's Foreign Policy
C Alden and A Aran, Foreign Policy Analysis – New Approaches, Routledge, 2011, esp Chs 1, 2, 6
S Smith, A Hadfield and T Dunne (Eds), Foreign Policies: Theories, Actors and Cases, Oxford University Press, 2012 2nd ed, Chs. 6, 7, 10
Yee-Kuang Heng, ‘The New Security Concept: The role of the military in Chinese foreign policy’, in Emilian Kavalski (ed), The Ashgate Research Companion to Chinese Foreign Policy, Ashgate: 2012
Week 4: Drivers of Change (Dean Kishore Mahbubani)
Nancy Birdsall and Francis Fukuyama, “The Post-Washington Consensus: Development After the Crisis,” Foreign Affairs, Vol. 90, No. 2, March/April 2011, pp. 45-53.
Kishore Mahbubani, The New Asian Hemisphere: The Irresistible Shift of Global Power to the East (New York: Public Affairs, 2008), Chapter 2.
Fareed Zakaria, The Post-American World (London: Allen Lane, 2008), Chapters 1 and 3.
Security, Insecurity, and War: Weeks 5-7
Week 5 Great Power Competition (Profs Huang Jing and Kanti Bajpai)
Rosemary Foot and Andrew Walter, China, the United States, and Global Order (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011), Chapter 7.
Aaron L. Friedberg, “The Future of US-China Relations: Is Conflict Inevitable?” International Security, Vol. 30, No. 2, Fall 2005, pp. 7-45.
Jing Huang, Kanti Bajpai, and Kishore Mahbubani, “Rising Peacefully Together. Asia's two biggest powers see each other as a threat. But are China and India destined for conflict?” Foreign Policy, 1 August, 2012, available at http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2012/08/01/rising_peacefully_together.
Randall Schweller and Xiayu Pu, “After Unipolarity: China’s Vision of International Order in an Era of US Decline,” International Security, Vol. 36, No. 1, Summer 2011, pp. 41-72.
Week 6 Ethnic Conflict, Political Islam, and Global Disorder (Dr Suzaina Kadir)
Week 7 Civil Conflict, Humanitarian Intervention, and the Responsibility to Protect (Prof Kanti Bajpai)
Alex J. Bellamy, Responsibility to Protect: The Global Effort to End Mass Atrocities (Cambridge: Polity Press, 2009), Chapter 1.
James D. Fearon and David D. Laitin, “Ethnicity, Insurgency, and Civil War,” American Political Science Review, Vol. 97, No. 1 (2003), pp. 75-90.
Jochen Prantl and Ryoko Nakano, “Global Norm Diffusion in East Asia: How China and Japan Implement the Responsibility to Protect,” International Relations, Vol. 25, No. 2 (2011), pp. 204-223.
Nicholas J. Wheeler, Saving Strangers: Humanitarian Intervention in International Society (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000), Chapter 1.
Global Public Goods: Weeks 8-9
Week 8 The International Trade Regime (Visiting Assoc Prof. Razeen Sally)
Bernard Hoekman and Michal Kostecki, The Political Economy of the World Trading System, 3rd edition (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009), Chapters 1-4, esp. Chapters 2 and 3.
WTO (2011), Understanding the WTO, Chapters 1, 3, and 7, available at: http://www.wto.org/english/thewto_e/whatis_e/tif_e/understanding_e.pdf
Razeen Sally, Trade Policy, New Century: The WTO, FTAs and Asia Rising, (London: Institute of Economic Affairs, 2008). (The US edition is New Frontiers in Free Trade, Washington DC: Cato Institute, 2008). Chapter 4, available at: http://www.iea.org.uk/sites/default/files/publications/files/upldbook432pdf.pdf
Week 9 Global Financial Order (Visiting Assoc Prof. Razeen Sally)
David M. Andrews, C. Randall Henning, and Louis W. Pauly, Governing the World’s Money (Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 2002), Chapter 1.
Eric Helleiner, ed., “Crisis and the Future of Global Financial Governance,” Special Forum section, Global Governance, Vol. 16, No. 1 (2009), pp. 1-28.
Ngaire Woods, The Globalizers: The IMF, the World Bank and their Borrowers (Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 2006), Chapters 1 and 7.
Week 10 Global Health (Visiting Prof.Tikki Pangestu)
Stefan Elbe, Virus Alert: Security, Governmentality and the AIDS Pandemic (New York: Columbia University Press, 2009), Chapter 1.
K Lee, T Pang, and Y Tan (eds), Asia’s Role in Governing Global Health (London: Routledge, 2012).
Devi Sridhar, Sanjeev Khagram, and Tikki Pang, “Are existing governance structures equipped to deal with today’s global health challenges? Towards systematic coherence in scaling up,” Global Health Governance, Vol. 2, No. 2 (2009), pp. 1-25.
III. Political Systems
Week 11 Political Liberalism in Singapore (Assoc Prof. Kenneth Paul Tan)
Week 12 Politics, Media, and Culture in Singapore (Assoc Prof. Kenneth Paul Tan)
Course Review and Wrap-up: Week 13 (Module Coordinator)