This book guides you through the entirety of the research process in International Relations, from selecting a research question and reviewing the literature to field research and writing up. Covering both qualitative and quantitative methods in IR, it offers a balanced assessment of the key methodological debates and research methods within the discipline. The book: Is specifically focussed on research methods used in International Relations. Spans the entire research process from choosing a research question to writing up. Provides practical research methods guidance. Introduces you to broader methodological debates and brings together contemporary research from empirical and interpretive traditions. Is packed with examples and suggestions for further reading. Research Methods in International Relations is essential reading for both undergraduate and postgraduate students taking Research Methods courses in International Relations, Politics, Security and Strategic Studies.
This is the first textbook specifically designed to introduce students of international relations and international politics to research methods. Written specifically for advanced undergraduates and graduate students, the book explains the key concepts, issues and methods involved in research in international relations. The book: Guides students through the complexities of conducting research in international relations Examines the key problems in choosing research design and strategies Explains the specifics of research in a variety of areas from theoretical work to policy evaluation Analayses a wide variety of methodological approaches Contains practical advice on the preparation and writing of dissertations in international relations Links each chapter to a companion website with web-based exercises This is a unique and invaluable resource for advanced undergraduates, postgraduates and scholars of international relations.
The main terrain of methodological disputes in the social sciences is empirical research, including the delineation of legitimate research questions, allocation of funding for projects, and employment in the profession. Yet we still lack practical answers to one of the most basic questions: How should researchers interpret meanings? The contributors take seriously the goals of both post-modernist and positivist researchers, as they offer detailed guidance on how to apply specific tools of analysis and how to circumvent their inherent limitations. Readers will understand what is at stake in selecting from discourse, speech acts, and semiotics – or even content analysis. Researchers will be able to decide when to combine tools drawn from different analytical traditions – perhaps discourse analysis to inform the construction of a dictionary for context-sensitive computerized coding. The results will be deeper interdisciplinary understanding and better research.
This new textbook surveys new and emergent methods for doing research in critical security studies, thereby filling a large gap in the literature of this emerging field. New or critical security studies is growing as a field, but still lacks a clear methodology; the diverse range of the main foci of study (culture, practices, language, or bodies) means that there is little coherence or conversation between these four schools or approaches. In this ground-breaking collection of fresh and emergent voices, new methods in critical security studies are explored from multiple perspectives, providing practical examples of successful research design and methodologies. Drawing upon their own experiences and projects, thirty-three authors address the following turns over the course of six comprehensive sections: Part I: Research Design Part II: The Ethnographic Turn Part III: The Practice Turn Part IV: The Discursive Turn Part V: The Corporeal Turn Part VI: The Material Turn This book will be essential reading for upper-level students and researchers in the field of critical security studies, and of much interest to students of sociology, ethnography and IR.
Evaluating Methodology in International Studies offers a unique collection of original essays by world-renowned political scientists. The essays address the state of the discipline in regard to the methodology of researching global politics, focusing in particular on formal modeling, quantitative methods, and qualitative approaches in International Studies. The authors reflect on the strengths and weaknesses of current methodology and suggest ways to advance theory and research in International Studies. This volume is essential reading for methods courses and will be of interest to scholars and students alike. See table of contents and excerpts. Frank P. Harvey is Professor of Political Science and Director of the Centre for Foreign Policy Studies at Dalhousie University. Michael Brecher is the R.B. Angus Professor of Political Science at McGill University and past president of the International Studies Association. Millennial Reflections on International Studies This volume is part of the Millennial Reflections on International Studies project in which forty-five prominent scholars engage in self-critical, state-of-the-art reflection on international studies to stimulate debates about successes and failures and to address the larger questions of progress in the discipline. Other paperbacks from this project: Realism and Institutionalism in International Studies Conflict, Security, Foreign Policy, and International Political Economy: Past Paths and Future Directions in International Studies Critical Perspectives in International Studies The full collection of essays is available in the handbook Millennial Reflections on International Studies.
Packed with features to promote learning this text is ideal for use on an introductory methods course or for readers carrying out their own research project. It presents: - an overview of the philosophy and principles of research - qualitative and quantitative research methods and research design - a critical review of selected methods - methods of gathering information, such as interviews and focus groups, and discusses issues associated with ensuring quality of information - appropriate methods for analysing and interpreting data, and covers the process of communicating research. The inclusion of chapter objectives, regular summaries, questions for discussion and tasks and assignments, makes this the must-have text for researching politics.
Constructivism's basic premise - that individuals and groups are shaped by their world but can also change it - may seem intuitively true. Yet this process-oriented approach can be more difficult to apply than structural or rational choice frameworks. Based on their own experiences and exemplars from the IR literature, well-known authors Audie Klotz and Cecelia Lynch lay out concepts and tools for anyone seeking to apply the constructivist approach in research. Written in jargon-free prose and relevant across the social sciences, this book is essential for anyone trying to sort out appropriate methods for empirical research.
Nothing rings truer to those teaching political science research methods: students hate taking this course. Tackle the challenge and turn the standard research methods teaching model on its head with Political Science Research in Practice. Akan Malici and Elizabeth Smith engage students first with pressing political questions and then demonstrate how a researcher has gone about answering them, walking through real political science research that contributors have conducted. Through the exemplary use of survey research, experiments, field research, case studies, content analysis, interviews, document analysis, statistical research, and formal modeling, each chapter introduces students to a method of empirical inquiry through a specific topic that will spark their interest and curiosity. Each chapter shows the process of developing a research question, how and why a particular method was used, and the rewards and challenges discovered along the way. Students can better appreciate why we need a science of politics—why methods matter—with these first-hand, issue-based discussions. The following features make this an ideal teaching tool: An introductory chapter that succinctly introduces key terms in research methodology Key terms bolded throughout and defined in a glossary Broad coverage of the most important methods used in political science research and the major subfields of the discipline A companion website designed to foster online active learning An instructor's manual and testbank to help incorporate this innovative text into your syllabus and assessment.
Essay from the year 2006 in the subject Politics - International Politics - General and Theories, London School of Economics (Department of International Relations), language: English, abstract: Since the behaviourist turn of the 1960s, questions concerning the appropriateness and desirability of a positivist research agenda have been at the forefront of meta-methodological debate within the social sciences. The evolving 'science wars' between positivists and normativists have also presented enormous challenges to the epistemological identities and professional self-images of scholars working in the academic field of International Relations (IR). Whereas positivists maintain that the overarching aim of science is the experimentally guided explanation of empirical phenomena under 'covering laws', normativists and traditionalists hold that social scientists cannot — and, in fact, should not — emulate the causal models of the natural sciences. According to this view, it is virtually impossible to study the influences of distinct variables in complex social interactions, and statistical aggregation merely obscures the fact that the true 'causes' of events are rarely obvious in the social world. Hence, the purpose of political and social research ought to be a desire to understand processes 'from within' rather than to explain them 'from outside'. Yet the traditionalist critique of social scientific positivism did not imply that positivists would be entirely oblivious to the importance of norms in international life. IR does not only deal with descriptive, but with political (and, ultimately, prescriptive) aspects of the social world. Thus, it might appear worthwhile to ask: how scientific are so-called 'scientific' (positivist) approaches to the study of IR — if their theoretical premises and empirical achievements are taken at face value and judged by their own standards of 'scientific' neutrality and precision? To answer this question, I will first describe the spread of positivist thought in IR. Secondly, I will outline in how far two research programmes which have been heavily influenced by positivist method — game theory and the democratic peace thesis — have challenged traditionalist approaches, and whether they can be regarded as 'truly scientific'. Drawing on these insights, I will conclude that, on closer inspection, positivist research methods in IR do lack a perfectly 'scientific' status, although they have made important contributions to the academic field.