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International Relations and Security Studies

duration Duration: 1 Teaching Period

unit code Unit Code: POL20010

contact hours Contact Hours: Recommended 10 hours of study per week

About this unit

This unit introduces students to the United Nations and the problems associated with global governance. It enables students to apply their knowledge developed in ‘Sources of Conflict and its Resolution’ to understand the legal framework of the United Nations as well as its potential and limitations. Throughout the subject, students will examine the power, passions and disappointments of diplomacy in the world order.


In tracing the formation of the United Nations and the uneasy compromises it embodies this unit will examine the legal framework of the World body. It examines the role of the Security Council and the difficulties of gaining consensus through diplomacy for united action.

Key issues examined include:

  • A New World Order: The Soviet/USA stalemate
  • Decolonisation and the third world challenge
  • Peacekeeping and foreign intervention
  • The coalition of the willing and the war against terror and its implications for the United Nations.

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