Changes in the world make it an exciting time to study global affairs, and the London School of Economics offers an unparalleled opportunity to examine shifting social and economic arrangements across the world. The discipline of international relations provides a profound outlook on how we attempt to understand the social world. As a student of international relations, I have benefited from the study of the political forces shaping contemporary times from a global perspective.
Additionally, as a political science student, I have studied the general security concerns of the nation-state and how the domestic context of each state relates to its international relations. This has supplied me with the tools needed to evaluate the workings of world politics and how it shapes foreign policy. Possessing such critical thinking skills is highly valuable, affording a flexible method for perceiving the changing global environment and the challenges it presents to governments, businesses, and communities.
Pursuing a master’s degree is an endeavour I am undertaking to enhance my analytical skills and expand my knowledge in the field of international affairs. Through undergraduate courses and research, I have developed an interest in studying contemporary global conflicts. In particular, their formation from a historical perspective and the conditions which perpetuate them and prevent peaceful resolution. For example, the political obstacles preventing nations from engaging in constructive efforts to address climate change.
What prevents the creation of an effective transnational regulatory framework? Solving this topical issue is necessary for defining and promoting a practical strategy for mitigating global climate change. Based on the growing interdependence between states, the traditionally competitive foreign policy strategies which characterize state relations may be overcome to achieve shared goals. It is essential, therefore, to understand the conditions required to facilitate cooperative action on the part of nations.
The LSE’s specialized approach to focusing on the international system independently of domestic politics is one reason I would be well suited for this program. By comparing the domestic and international levels of policy-making, it is possible to view the differences between them. For instance, long-term policy objectives regarding ecological sustainability are generally treated as an unimportant issue in domestic politics.
However, the problem of climate change is a priority in many international forums such as the United Nations Environment Programme and the European Climate Change Programme. The research done by LSE’s Department of International Relations is designed to consider the unique dynamics of domestic and international actors and institutions.
Thinking theoretically about international politics allows for the identification of factors which drive conflicts in contemporary times. Through my undergraduate research projects, I have studied trends which are shaping social and economic structures globally. Considering the most pressing concerns in the world right now, I asked the following question. How are the greatest threats to the long-term stability of the current world order being managed and adapted to? This inquiry led me to research how governments are acting to meet the challenges of the future.
The European Union is an ideal subject to study, as it represents an innovative attempt by governments to meet changing global conditions. Specifically, I researched the policy-direction of the EU regarding its position on the international climate change agenda. I identified the EU as a focal point in my research, as it evidenced one potential direction governments may take to formulate action plans in their efforts to mitigate and adapt to catastrophic climate change. Investigating a broad issue, such as power politics, through the study of a narrower policy-area, such as the international climate change regime, is something I hope to do through graduate level research.
Academic works which initiated my interest in studying climate change included Anthony Giddens’s book ‘The Politics of Climate Change.’ Specifically, his sociological perspective on the development of climate change as the result of choices made by nations revealed a new avenue of discourse over climate policy that I had not previously considered. By looking at the role of society and culture in shaping the domestic sphere in which policy is debated, I came to appreciate the role international organizations play in bringing the issue of global climate change to citizens.
By looking at how the international, national and local levels interact around an issue is essential for identifying the factors which prevent a comprehensive approach to tackling climate change.
At the LSE, I hope to develop my research interests while benefiting from the insights of other disciplines. The diversity of research specialties in the Department of International Relations makes it clear that LSE is the best university for me to continue my post-graduate studies.
Combining insights from other fields is something I have benefited from immensely. As a global security risk analyst for a multinational software company, I learned about the ways data technologies are being used to inform business strategies. Using metrics to show trends makes it possible to identify changes in the world and to see them as part of a larger pattern. Learning about how various actors operating in a global environment use technology to think strategically in an increasingly complicated environment has been valuable training for my future academic research and career.
The LSE stands out as a truly international institution. The intellectual diversity of faculty within the international affairs department makes it an ideal place for me to study the evolving world. Also, the overall prestige of the university gives it ties to the nonacademic world, drawing policy-makers and activists from around the world to share their insights with the student body. Engaging with the outside world during my studies is something that I aspire to do. By doing so, I hope my academics and research will prepare me to form new and innovative ideas on current policy-debates and overall, help me to better understand and respond to the dynamic global environment.