International Security


1. What is security?
2. How do realist conceptualizations of security differ from liberal, constructivist, critical, and feminist approaches?
3. How can we approach security studies?

What is security studies?

Answering this question is complicated because the concept of "security" itself is hotly contested. According to Tickner, the "re-analyses" of security has only intensified since the early 1980s. Different theoretical frameworks disagree, for example, on who the actors of security are, what the objects of security are, and whose security is the most important.

Approaching Security Studies

1. Identify key (guiding/further) questions regarding war, peace and security. 2. Identify different (possible) explanations to these questions from a historical and theoretical perspective. 3. Use a combination of theoretical readings, concrete historical case studies, and contemporary policy debates to evaluate different possible answers.

Tickner, J. Ann. "Re-visioning Security." In International Relations Theory Today, edited by Ken Booth and Steve Smith, 175-
197. Cambridge: Polity Press, 1995.

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