The Division of Global Affairs offers two degrees in Global Affairs, a Master of Science and a Ph.D. The M.S. degree requires 40 credits and the Ph.D. requires 52 course credits and 21 dissertation research credits. Students also have the option to pursue dual M.S./Ph.D. degrees in Global Affairs and International Business, Global Affairs, and Law, or Global Affairs and Public Policy.
Learn more about our three programs
26:478:504 INTERNATIONAL LAW - Professor Jean-Marc Coicaud
Bringing together theory and practice, the course will examine the extent and limits of international law and international organizations in support of human rights and global justice. It will describe the contribution of international and international organizations in these areas, as well as evaluate them. It will also explore suggestions to achieve a better alignment of international law and international organizations, and human rights and global justice in the future. The course begins with methodological and practical considerations on teaching law and international law in the context of the course and beyond. It continues with outlining some of the key theoretical aspects of law, comparing in particular law at the national and international levels. From this perspective, the course also analyzes the key principles of international law. Following this approach, the course becomes more practical and examines how international law functions in concrete terms. This more practical aspect of the course focuses on international law in relation to international organizations and member states. In order to do so, the course sheds light on UN peacekeeping operations and humanitarian crises. Later on, the course offers a critical analysis of international law, in the process highlighting its progressive and conservative dimensions. It ends with looking ahead and exploring how international law is likely to evolve in the coming years, especially in relation with issues of global justice and global policy.
26:478:506 QUANTITATIVE METHODS FOR GLOBAL AFFAIRS - Professor Jun Xiang
In this course, students are introduced to data analysis, statistical inference, and research design relevant to global affairs research. Topics covered will include descriptive statistics, probability, confidence intervals, hypothesis tests, correlation, and regression analysis.
26:478:508 EVOLUTION OF THE GLOBAL SYSTEM - Professor Amy Higer
This course aims to help us make sense of this moment in history. It will examine the historical foundations of the contemporary global system to provide a helpful vantage point from which to evaluate present-day international relations, and suggests where the road ahead might lead. It begins by examining the foundational moments in the development of international politics as a field of study: 1648, 1919, 1945, 1989, and interrogates their historical role in shaping our world. It examines the events tied to these dates and the underlying political trends and pressures that led to the creation, spread, and consolidation of the nation-state system. It also examines the political trends and pressures that threaten to undermine this system. The course pays particular attention to the intersection between history, geography, and theory. Specifically, it asks: to what extent are our theories of how international relations works a product of specific historical moments, and to what extent are they generalizable and universal? We end the course with speculative questions about whether we are entering a new era of fundamental global change, or whether we will see a return to older patterns.
26:478:515 IMMIGRATION & SECURITY IN EUROPE - Professor Ariane Chebel d’Appollonia
This course offers a comparative analysis of Europe’s and America’s distinct responses to the recent challenges posed by international migration flows. Both face the flow of legal and illegal migrants, refugees and asylum seekers. Both have to address issues of border controls, migrant integration, and minority rights in a context characterized by expanded notions of “internal security” and "national emergency" – as illustrated by the refugee crisis in Europe, and the “Muslim ban” in the US. Stimulated by actual and perceived threats, immigration has become increasingly linked to security governance. This trend, in turn, influenced immigration regimes in both continents—generating new restrictive policy measures, new institutions designed to improve the fight against terrorism, and affecting the perception of migrants among host populations on both sides of the Atlantic.
26:478:530 ANTHROPOLOGY & WAR - Professor Brian Ferguson
This course is a survey of anthropological approaches to war. It does not cover theories from political science, the history of Europe or the great powers, or other “standard” war topics. This course looks at the nature of war as a human institution, where it comes from, and how it affects society. It asks how can we better understand war by using the vast range of cultures and behaviors that anthropologists study, and how those insights may relate to wars raging in the world today. It begins by examining the actual practice of war in “tribal” societies, then moves to theoretical overviews about interrelationships between war and society. Next come two units examining evidence and debates about “human nature” and war in humanity’s distant past. Four units sequentially present detailed discussions about war in relation to ecology, economy, and kinship, gender relations, values and belief systems, and finally, politics. The latter part of the semester shifts to the contemporary world. Two units examine first theories, then cases, of “ethnic” and other violence. The next unit deals with topics and cases related to the current global confrontation over terrorism, and the next with contemporary issues about anthropological engagement with military and security organizations. We conclude with a focus on peace.
26:478:532 TOPICS: ECONOMICS OF IMMIGRATION AND GENDER - Professor Kusum Mundra
Understand the economic impact of immigration and immigration policies in the U.S. over the past century in a global context. This course will focus on why and who migrates across borders and the effect labor market effect on native employment and wages; effect of high skilled immigration on innovation and economic growth; effect of immigration on the Government Budget. Economic assimilation of immigrants in the U.S.; role of remittances on the immigrant sending country and the economic effects of immigrant social networks will also be discussed. U.S. immigration policy will be compared with that of Canada and Europe.
26:478:537 GLOBAL GOVERNANCE - Professor Simon Reich
This is an introductory, foundational survey course helpful for all DGA students. It lays out a framework that students can use in their other core and elective courses. The course is divided into three parts. We first discuss the varied traditional and new approaches to understanding global affairs; we then recap of the development of the global system since the end of the Cold War; and finally, we examine a series of major contemporary policy issues stretching across the domains of human, national and global security–– from old and new forms of conflict, to poverty and development, and democracy and human rights. We will discuss the possible pattern of the post-pandemic world as time allows. The classes involve a mixture of lecture and discussion. We will have individual online meetings every two-to-three weeks. Students will write a midterm and final take-home exam, based on the course readings. Students are given three days to complete each exam.
26:478:541 GLOBAL POLITICAL ECONOMY - Professor Ajai Gaur
26:478:588:01 TOPICS IN GLOBAL AFFAIRS: AMERICAN GRAND STRATEGY - Professor Simon Reich
America stands at a crossroads as we prepare for a presidential election in November. It is reflected in the media every day. The Trump administration’s focus on an isolationist ‘America First’ strategy stands in stark contrast to both those of his post-war predecessors– what Barack Obama called “The Washington Playbook” - and what a Biden presidency might look like. But what are the options for presidents when it comes to America’s grand strategy? How does Trump’s strategy differ and in which ways? What are the consequences of his administration’s behavior for both American foreign policy and global stability? How has COVID-19 affected America’s global position? And what might American foreign policy look like after Trump? We try and answer these questions. We examine the meaning and purpose of a grand strategy and how it links to foreign policy; the optional strategies that presidents can pursue; and the consequences of the Trump administration’s efforts to implement one for America and the world. Each student will write a paper in which they select a region of the world and compare two possible contemporary strategies. Our goal is to enhance each student’s understanding of the strategic options; to understand how that links to current foreign policy issues; and apply them in a way that helps develop a student’s knowledge of a particular region of the world.
26:478:599 HUMAN RIGHTS & MASS ATROCITY - Professor Alexander Hinton
26:478:597 CURR ISSUES IN INTL BUSINESS - Professor John Cantwell
Theory of International Business: This course provides a critical overview of the major theoretical approaches in the international business literature. These strands of analysis can be grouped under the five headings of the market power, internalization, eclectic paradigm, competitive international industry and macroeconomic approaches. We examine both the differences and the scope for complementarities between these alternative means of thinking about international business. Drawing upon this analytical background, the course then reviews the key areas of recent research focus. These crucial new research issues include the role of location in international business, the strategy and organization of multinational corporations, subsidiary level development, cross-border alliances and international mergers and acquisitions. The course concludes with an assessment of the role of methodological design and prospective new directions in international business research.
26:478:680:1 TOPICS IN GLOBAL ANTHROPOLOGY: ENVIRONMENTAL CONFLICT - Professor Genese Sodikoff
Competition over territory and natural resources often leads to social conflict. This course focuses on the ways power dynamics shape landscapes, cause conflict, and exacerbate problems of ecological scarcity and degradation. Historical and ethnographic case studies illuminate the ways environmental conflicts have been framed by policy makers, social scientists, and people on the ground. These include, for example, the forceful displacement of Native Americans for the creation of national parks in the United States, the seizure of African savannah by British colonialists for large-game hunting preserves, the delimitation of rain forest by states and NGOs for biodiversity protection and ecotourism, and the enforcement of international bans against killing endangered species in regions where poverty is acute. Texts explore influential theories of environmental conflict, such as the “tragedy of the commons,” scarcity-induced violence, political ecology, postcolonial mindsets, and overpopulation, as well as scholarly critiques of these perspectives.
26:478:680:02 TOPICS IN GLOBAL ANTHROPOLOGY: PEACE, CONFLICT, SECURITY & DEVELOPMENT - Professor Sean Mitchell
International aid organizations and military and police strategists in places as different as rural Afghanistan and urban Brazil (and even here in Newark, NJ) today often understand security and development to be interdependent goals. But for critics, this “security-development nexus” legitimates authoritarian surveillance regimes and violent intervention into the lives of the world’s poor. This course examines the relationships between security and development in the contemporary world. Through reading ethnographic and historical case studies, as well as theoretical, journalistic, and polemical works, the course explores the different meanings assigned to these terms and the origins and material consequences of the “security-development nexus.” At its core, the debate over security and development revolves around key perspectives on the relationships among inequality, governance, well-being and the social bases of violence and peace.
26:478:514 Ethics, Security, and Global Affairs - Professor Ariane Chebel d’Appollonia
This course examines the foundations of ethics in public policy, and their role in answering some of the most pressing, topical and difficult challenges of this and successive generations (such as terrorism, humanitarian interventions, climate change, economic globalization). We will attempt to apply these principles by learning about some of the basic literature on ethics in international relations, debating the pros and cons of the various approaches, and there implications for public policies. For students, the course’s objectives are to establish a solid foundation in the literature on ethics in international affairs, develop greater analytical agility in applying theoretical material to a wide array of recent cases, and expand proficiency in communicating concepts through weekly class participation as well as the presentation.
26:478:516 Human Security - Professor Simon Reich
The growth in the number of failed and fragile states, marked by the failure of the rule of law, has been sustained over the course of the last decade. The product in many countries has been civil conflict, the deprivation of human rights and the displacement of large numbers of the population who are subject to violence in a variety of forms. From Latin America to Africa and Asia, internally displaced persons and refugees have sought sanctity. These efforts, however, have often proved unsuccessful, often resulting in high mortality rates. In this seminar we shall examine the questions of how and why human security emerged, what it entails, and the issue of the protection of vulnerable populations in the context of civil and military conflict.
26:478:538 Global Environmental Issues - Professor Gabriela Kuetting
This course is focused on the global environmental "problematique" and the ways in which it is being played out in a variety of political and policy arenas. Apart from introducing the student to the concepts and literature in global environmental politics, the course is intended to provide students with insights into: the political structure and context of transnational environmental issues; the ways in which individuals are implicated in these issues; the intergovernmental mechanisms established for addressing environmental problems; the treatment of environmental problems that occur in many different places but are not necessarily linked; and transnational environmental activity, including that through social movements, non-governmental organizations, and corporate actors. We will approach these matters through a focus on four general aspects of the environmental problematique: environmental governance; civil society and transnational actors; critical debates on justice; development and economic issues; and environmental security.
26:478:541 Global Political Economy - Professor Jun Xiang
This course conducts a survey of classical and contemporary approaches in international political economy. It focuses on the politics of substantive international economic issues, such as trade, foreign direct investment, monetary policy, foreign debt and economic adjustment, foreign aid and development, globalization, and international institutions.
26:478: Strategic Nonviolent Conflict - Professor Kurt Schock
This course examines strategic nonviolent conflict, i.e., conflicts prosecuted by civilians wielding methods of nonviolent action in struggles against oppressive and often violent opponents. The organized and sustained use of methods of nonviolent action by civilians in asymmetric conflicts is often referred to as “civil resistance.” Civil resistance movements occur partially or entirely outside of institutional political channels (which may be non-existent, blocked, or controlled by hostile parties) and involve people using methods of nonviolent action to deny legitimacy and support to the opponent. Historically, the impact of civil resistance on challenging unjust relationships between citizens and states, and oppressor and oppressed, has been significant.
26:478:593 ITL INNOV POLICY BUS - Professor John Cantwell
National Innovation Policies and International Business: This course examines the relationship between the strategies for innovation of multinational corporations (MNCs) and those of national governments in a global economic environment. A key theme is the relationship between innovation and competitiveness at the firm and country levels, and the interaction between these two levels since the majority of technological capacity is held by MNCs while government policies affect the extent and pattern of innovations within national boundaries. Attention is given to the distinctiveness of national patterns of technological specialization, how these reflect the characteristics of local policies and institutions, and how they have been changing over time. The international location of technological activity is considered from the national perspective of the effects of globalization on catching up (or falling behind); from the cross-border perspective of MNCs; and from the local perspective of regional systems of innovation and localized clusters, and the interactions in knowledge creation between MNC subsidiaries and indigenous firms. The course concludes with an evaluation of how innovation policies are being gradually reshaped in the current context of the globalization of a knowledge-driven economy.
26:478:598 Genocide - Professor Alex Hinton
If the 20th century, which has been called “the century of genocide,” ended with the horrors of Bosnia, Rwanda, and Kosovo, genocidal violence has continued unabated into the new millennium, as illustrated by Darfur, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and even Iraq. Such genocidal violence raises many questions that we will examine in this course. How does genocide come to take place? How is it patterned? What motivates people to participate in such violence? Are there special dynamics at work in the world in which we live that are conducive to political violence and genocide? How, for example, might mass murder and its remembrance be linked to modernity and globalization? How is genocide represented, coped with, and remembered? How might it be prevented? This course will range far and wide to consider a number of cases (including Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cambodia, Darfur, Guatemala, Rwanda, and Turkey) and topics related to these issues. Accordingly, students will learn about the origins, dynamics, endings, and aftermaths of genocide across a number of cases with a particular emphasis on understanding how genocide is shaped by cultural understandings and institutions.
26:478: Migration in the Middle East - Professor Leyla Amzi-Erdogdular
This course examines population movements that shaped the modern Middle East. Drawing on a range of primary and secondary material across disciplines, it considers the causes of displacement including conflicts, socioeconomic transformations, and climate change, as well as the role of empire, nation-state, colonialism, and nationalism. The course focuses on a range of case studies to offer a comparative analysis of the ways in which migration informed international laws and state policies, the memory of displacement, and contemporary identities.
The European Summer Institute (ESI) is a joint educational venture between the MA Program in Political Science - United Nations and Global Policy Studies, Rutgers University, and the International Center for Development and Decent Work (ICDD) at the University of Kassel, Germany. The ESI collaborates with Rutgers Department of Women's and Gender Studies, Center for European Studies and Political Science Department of the Division of Global Affairs at Rutgers Newark.