International Security in a Globalised World

Module code: POPP 3050

Module description

This module explores the contemporary security environment, developing student awareness of key issues and perspectives on international security. The course opens with a theoretical exploration of security. This establishes the philosophy of the whole module: that security is a relative, relational and psychological concept. The position of realist writers is assessed and compared to analysts from other traditions in international relations. Security is addressed as a multi-dimensional concept, requiring a loosening of the traditionally exclusive hold of military concerns. Security is considered as a human need operating at varying levels of analysis - global, international, regional, national, societal and individual - with each having a set of specific concerns. The module identifies and examines the relative underdevelopment of academic thinking about security in comparison to the related concepts of power, order and peace. The early section also demonstrates the interdependency between academic analysis and the perspectives of policymakers. A key focus of the module is on honing students' skills in using academic understanding to inform policy practice.

The second part of the module is student driven: it considers selected aspects of the contemporary security agenda. These might include arms control, rogue states; proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD); terrorism; migration; organized crime; climate change; food security; epidemics; conflict resolution and security institutions.

Contact hours per student per year

  • Workshops: 44 hours 


  • Policy Paper (2000 words): 40%
  • Portfolio (2500 words): 60%

Additional costs: Students are recommended to buy a copy of one of the core text books. A DMUGlobal trip may be organized to relevant security organisations like the EU and NATO.