Additional course description from the syllabus
This is an ambitious, interdisciplinary survey course that covers much of the world and its regions in order to examine, through dynamic comparison, how different countries and regions (specifically, national governments and sometimes sub-national governments) of the world approach ‘national’ strategy – that is, the framing, planning and execution of major national projects (ends) through the mobilization of key national means – across a number of policy sectors – from war and peace to education and energy policy – in the context of a hyper-globalized world.
Different national and region-specific approaches to strategy may be informed by different:
in this course, we take into consideration all branches of government, from the executive to the legislative and judicial, as well as different levels of government, from central to regional/provincial and even municipal;
geographic and geopolitical specificities, including specific or local impacts of global phenomena; and
sector-specific policy approaches, from foreign policy to national security, social policy and economic policy.
- constitutional and political structures, norms and traditions;
Key lines of enquiry for the course include:
What is the relationship between structure (constitutional-legal, geopolitical, ‘culture’, etc.) and agency in determining policy development or informing decision-making on major issues in different key states and regions around the world?
How effective or coherent is the planning function in different states around the world? On what is this effectiveness or coherence (or its absence) dependent?
How do major countries frame major public problems, and what are the decision-making considerations and stakes for states, resulting from these international forces and dynamics, in specific policy areas, broadly conceived (e.g. economics, national security, foreign affairs, the environment, education, energy, health care, etc.)?
- How do countries determine their national interests? How do they mobilize resources and capabilities in order to advance these national interests in policy?
To understand, in a hyper-globalized context, the strategic traditions, opportunities and constraints of different countries and regions in relation to the alignment of ends and means in different policy fields
- To acquire a working capacity to actively compare major strategic policy issues across a number of states or jurisdictions
- To develop an instinct for framing any policy issue – macro or micro – in strategic terms.
Commentary by the Atlas editors: The class titles provide a list of teaching topics for the Atlas subject, International and Global Context
Page created by: Ian Clark, last updated 23 February 2013. The content presented on this page, except in the Commentary, is drawn directly from the source(s) cited above, and consists of direct quotations or close paraphrases.