• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

International Relations is a vibrant field of significant growth and change. This book guides students through the complexities of over 40 central concepts and core theories, relating them at all times to contemporary issues and debates.

Each concept is divided into five sections to allow rapid familiarization with the topic and provide signposts for further exploration:

Core questions to address; Definition; Theoretical perspectives; Empirical problems; Core reading and useful websites

In addition the major theories are covered by six-part entries that give a 360 degree view of the strengths, weaknesses, applications and methodologies of each one:

An introduction to the core questions; Overview and background; Methodologies; Empirical application; Central criticism; Core reading and useful websites

Clear and highly readable, Key Concepts in International Relations is an essential guide for students on politics and international relations courses.

Foreign Policy Analysis
Foreign policy analysis
1. Core Questions Addressed
  • How can we explain foreign policy decisions?
  • How can the analyst contribute to the improvement of foreign policy?
  • What are the implications of foreign policy for identity?
2. Definitions

Foreign policy in its traditional definition is the policy of a state towards external actors and especially other states. In contrast particularly to neorealism (→ Theory Concept: Realism and Neorealism), it therefore does not primarily look at the international system as such but offers an ‘inside-out’ perspective to understand the decision-making process within a state that produces policies directed beyond the state (→ Levels of Analysis).

This traditional definition has become more problematic over time, in particular in the light of (→) globalization and (→) regional integration. On the one hand, this has ...

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