Why did Vladimir Putin choose to wage war against Ukraine? How does a president’s personality influence their foreign policy? And what are the most important factors shaping Beijing’s behaviour towards Taiwan? In this course, we will try to find answers to these and other questions related to foreign policy decision-making. To do so, we will engage with some of the most innovative contributions to the field of foreign policy analysis. This includes scholarship on the rational actor model, the role of political leaders and their advisers, the implications of culture, gender and sex, as well as the influences of cognitive biases and emotions, among other things. We will discuss and evaluate their arguments in combination with some case studies of foreign policy decision-making from across the world.
This course is for 2nd year MIA, MPP and MDS students only.