We are delighted to announce that the Department of Politics and International Studies (PAIS) is ranked 1st of 84 UK Politics departments in The Times/The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020. This influential national league table reflects latest data, including student satisfaction (NSS), research excellence, and graduate prospects.
Professor Nick Vaughan-Williams, Head of PAIS, commented:
“Students and staff in PAIS will be justifiably proud that, for the second year in a row, the Department has been ranked 1st among UK Politics Departments in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020. This wonderful result underscores that our twinned commitment to viewing students as partners in our education strategy and as beneficiaries of our long-standing research excellence is a winning formula for sustained success. With a renewed focus in 19/20 on employability, internationalisation, widening participation, and equality and diversity – featuring initiatives to deepen our EU partnerships, further liberate the curriculum, and enhance the student voice – this latest league table success is a terrific start to the new academic year. Over the coming weeks my colleagues and I look forward to welcoming all new and returning students to the Department and to driving forward these agendas together.”
Dr Justin Greaves, Director of Student Experience and Progression, commented:
“This outstanding result is testament to all the brilliant students and staff in PAIS. This league table shows how we are a leader, both within the Russell Group and the sector as a whole, in terms of student experience and teaching quality. It is particularly pleasing to see our results have increased yet further in these categories. I look forward to working with all our incoming and returning students to ensure that the PAIS department goes from strength to strength, combining intellectual stretch and rigour with the highest possible levels of academic support.”
We thank all staff and students who have contributed to this outstanding achievement. With a number of exciting and ambitious plans for the 2019/20 academic year and beyond, we look forward to sustaining and building on these successes in the months and years ahead.
When Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan visited the White House on November 13, 2019 he said a landmark resolution passed by the House of Representatives in October recognising the Armenian genocide had “hurt deeply the Turkish nation”, and had the “potential to cast a deep shadow over our bilateral relations”.
This article by Dr. Maria Koinova in The Conversation discusses how the Armenian diaspora, preoccupied with issues of genocide recognition, became instrumental in passing this resolution in the US, and building coalitions with other ethnic groups to advocate globally.
Nastia van der Meer, BA (Hons) History and Politics, 2019, has won the Undergraduate Dissertation Prize competition of the Council for British Research in the Levant – for best UG dissertation on the Levant in 2019.
Nastia's dissertation, supervised by Nicola Pratt, compared the non-violent resistance methods used by indigenous populations to resist settler colonial oppression in the contexts of Apartheid South Africa and modern-day Israel-Palestine. The assessors found the dissertation to be “highly original and cutting edge with a sophisticated approach”. Congratulations to Nastia!
East Asia Study Group Special Seminar by Prof. Richard Samuels (MIT) on Japanese intelligence community
We are delighted to invite Professor Richard Samuels, Ford International Professor of Political Science and Director of the Center for International Studies at MIT, as a special guest speaker for our East Asia Study Group (EASG) seminar.
Professor Samuels will discuss the evolution of Japan’s intelligence community and its future, based on his 6th book from Cornell University Press, Special Duty: A history of the Japanese Intelligence Community (published in October 2019). He is one of the very most distinguished international experts on Japanese politics. Professors Chris Hughes, Richard Aldrich, and Chris Moran will be hosting this talk. Although this event is out of term time, we are very fortunate to have Professor Samuels visit, and really hope you can make the effort to attend. A private book signing will take place immediately after the talk. If you plan to attend this seminar, please email email@example.com.
Further details below:
Title: Special Duty: A History of the Japanese Intelligence Community
Time: 17 December 2019, 15:00-17:00
Venue: Council Chamber, Senate House
Intelligence communities are everywhere and always in motion. Japan's has been no exception, often shifting in response to dramatic analytical and organisational failures, changes in the regional and global balance, and sudden technological developments. In the first half of the 20th century, Japan had a full spectrum intelligence apparatus. This came apart with defeat in WWII and subordination to the United States. After the Cold War, shifts in the security environment and major intelligence failures stimulated rethinking by Tokyo. Following a period of half-hearted and incomplete reforms, the Japanese government began to enhance its collection and analysis capabilities, and to tackle in earnest the dysfunctional stovepipes and leak-prone practices hampering its intelligence system. Where do matters stand today?
Tom Long and Sebastian Bitar published a new entry on "International Security in Latin America," for the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Latin American Politics. The chapter surveys the state of the field relating to Latin American security, including topics such as state security, transnational organized crime, high homicide rates, borders, and more. In the region, "isolated state responses are insufficient to respond to transnational dynamics; although some coordination has been achieved, intergovernmental responses have produced limited gains and substantial unintended consequences." The piece emerged from collaboration during Dr Bitar's visit as an IAS in 2018; Dr Bitar is an associate professor at Universidad de los Andes, Bogota, Colombia.
The piece is available here: https://oxfordre.com/politics/view/10.1093/acrefore/9780190228637.001.0001/acrefore-9780190228637-e-1735