At the same time, it gives the opportunity, through practical and case study-driven modules, to learn about conflict prevention and early warning, as well as the appropriate ways of managing conflicts peacefully through negotiation and mediation.
The programme also provides you with training specific to working in the field of conflict analysis, such as preparing reports on specific conflicts or security issues, drafting recommendations for policymakers, or mediating between conflicting parties. The programme is constantly updated to introduce fresh insights from the theory of conflict and innovative policy strategies as developed in the field by practitioners and academics alike.
An ideal subject for those who may have previously worked in conflict zones, or have an interest in how the theories of international relations cuts across the study of conflict, conflict resolution and security issues. Alongside your studies, you will have access to many additional external lectures, conferences and seminars, or via an internship with an organisation such as NATO. The teaching is delivered by academics and enhanced by practitioners - experts in their field combining theory with contemporary case studies bringing the latest global conflicts to the classroom.
Staff and students share their insights and experiences of the International Conflict and Security Master's.
We are committed to offering flexible study options at BSIS and enable you to tailor your degree to meet your needs. This programme is available with start dates in September and January; full- and part-time study options; split-site options, and students can combine two fields of study leading to a degree that reflects both disciplines.
Knowledge and understanding
You gain knowledge and understanding of:
- key historical and theoretical issues in international conflict and the study of war and peace, together with familiarity with appropriate bibliographical sources
- how to apply general theoretical and conceptual frameworks to the analysis of specific conflicts and security issues
- the nature and distribution of power in the international systems, problems of political order and the social, economic, historical and cultural context within which actors operate
- the different kinds of actors on the international scene, their respective interests and influence in conflict and security-related issues
- key theoretical problems of war, peace and security
- current political challenges to international peace and security and possible strategies to address them
- the changing role of the state in the context of globalisation and regional integration and the implications for international peace and security
- how to design and conduct a research project demonstrating awareness of epistemological and methodological principles
- how to carry out an independent research project and write in a scholarly manner, demonstrating familiarity with academic conventions.
You develop intellectual skills in:
- general research skills, especially bibliographic and computing skills
- gathering, organising and deploying evidence, data and information from a variety of secondary and some primary sources
- identifying, investigating, analysing, formulating and advocating solutions to problems
- developing reasoned arguments, synthesising relevant information and exercising critical judgement
- reflecting on, and managing, your own learning and seeking to make use of constructive feedback from your peers and staff to enhance your performance and personal skills
- managing your own learning self-critically.
You gain subject-specific skills in:
- understanding the nature and significance of conflict as a human condition
- the ability to critically apply concepts, theories and methods used in the study of conflict and security to the analysis of political events, ideas, institutions and practices
- the ability to critically evaluate different interpretations of political issues and events
- the ability to collect, analyse and present information about conflict and political events
- an awareness of the main epistemological issues relevant to research in the social sciences, including the major theoretical and epistemological debates in the social sciences as they bear on international conflict analysis.
You gain the following transferable skills:
- communication: the ability to communicate effectively and fluently in speech and writing (including, where appropriate, the use of IT), organise information clearly and coherently, use communication and information technology for the retrieval and presentation of information, including, where appropriate, statistical or numerical information
- information technology: produce written documents, undertake online research, communicate using email, process information using databases
- working with others: define and review the work of others, work co-operatively on group tasks, understand how groups function, collaborate with others and contribute effectively to the achievement of common goals
- improving your own learning: explore your strengths and weaknesses, time-management skills, review your working environment (especially the student-staff relationship), develop autonomy in learning, work independently, demonstrate initiative and self-organisation
- important research management skills include the setting of appropriate timescales for different stages of the research, with clear starting and finishing dates (through a dissertation), presentation of a clear statement of the purposes and expected results of the research, and developing appropriate means of estimating and monitoring resources and use of time
- problem-solving: identify and define problems, explore alternative solutions and discriminate between them.
The programme aims to:
- provide a programme that will attract, and meet the needs of both those seeking to prepare for careers in fields concerned with international conflicts and those with a general intellectual interest in contemporary security issues
- provide you with a research-active teaching environment which gives you a good grounding in the study of study of international conflict and war, co-operation, security and peace
- examine how state, non-state and supra-national actors behave and interact in conflict situations
- ensure that you acquire a solid knowledge of the theories of the causes and dynamics of different kinds of contemporary conflict and security threats and the means to manage them
- ensure that students who specialise in regional conflicts acquire an advanced understanding of the historical, cultural, social and institutional context of the area to be studied
- prepare students for various careers in jobs related to international conflict analysis security issues, as well as for career changes in the spirit of lifelong learning
- develop your general research skills and personal skills (transferable skills) in particular through a substantial dissertation.