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international relations

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Research Paper Guidelines

What is a Research Paper?

A research paper is much like the papers that students often write as part of their coursework in disciplines such as Political Science, History, or International Relations. Students choose a topic, work with their adviser to refine the topic and develop an argument, and then compose a compelling analysis of the issue. In general, students should avoid a purely historical paper and aim for a topic which has clear relevance to the current day.

Research papers should concentrate on analysis rather than policy prescriptions. The goal of the paper should be a rigorous examination of the causes and effects of important international events, trends, and/or policies.

Examples of Research Issues

The following are examples of topics of recent research papers done by some of our graduates. These examples should help students to understand the range of possible topics that can be investigated in a research paper. Students are, of course, in no way limited to the following examples – they are provided simply to help students in developing their own topics.

Effects of Trade Liberalization on the Pollution Intensity of the Manufacturing Sector in Latin America A Comparative Study of the 1925 Iraqi Constitution and the 2004 Interim Iraqi Constitution The Transformation of UN Peacekeeping in the Post-bipolar Era An Analysis of Energy Policy in India from the 1970′s to the Present Day Internet Control in China

Changing Internal Factors and Russian Foreign Policy
Human Rights and Religion Under the United Nations
Democratization in Africa
Changes in the U.S. – Japan Security Alliance from 1994 to the Present Format for the Research Paper

For the most part, the structure of the research paper is up to students and their advisers. There are, however, a few firm format requirements, as follows.

The paper should be 60-65 pages in length. See the General Guidelines section for more information on page...