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Graduate Workshop / Call for Papers

Workshop Title

The Ideational/Discursive Turn in International and European Studies: Revisions, Reflections and Re-considerations of the ‘Power of Ideas’ Hypothesis.

Contact Person’s Details

Andreas Gofas
Dept. of Politics & International Studies
Warwick University
Coventry CV4 7AL

Aims of Workshop

After a period of neglect, if not hostility, toward ideational explanations we are now faced with a burgeoning literature on the role of ideas. Indeed, it now seems obligatory for every work in international and European studies to consider the ‘power of ideas’ hypothesis –even if only then to dismiss it.

This workshop aims at evaluating the current wave of ideational scholarship and to address much debated issues like:

  • just what sort of an approach an ideational approach is;
  • which are its central assumptions;
  • what kind of problems remain unresolved by scholars advocating this approach; and,
  • whether it constitutes a distinct approach with a fully-fledged developed research program.

More specifically, we envision an one-day workshop that welcomes submissions from post-graduate students working within all (sub-) disciplines of international and European studies and whose work contains an ideational and/or discursive element and raises (not exclusively) questions like:

  • How can we clearly define ideational variables?
  • How can we conceptualise the links between ideas and policy outcomes?
  • Who are the main actors involved in ideational analysis?
  • Which are the diffusion mechanisms at work in ideational analysis?

What are the prospects for epistemological bridge-building with the ‘mainstream’ and the appropriate methodology for studying ideas?

Workshop Programme PDF icon