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Institute for Politics and Strategy

Kiron K. Skinner, Director
Department Office: Porter Hall 223E

The Institute for Politics and Strategy (IPS) is dedicated to the study of politics through the discipline of political science with support from other social science disciplines. In this way, IPS carries on a respected tradition of interdisciplinary political science at Carnegie Mellon University. The Institute for Politics and Strategy also builds upon the university’s rich heritage of applying basic science to issues of public policy. 

At various times during the past fifty years, CMU faculty members have been innovators of what is now known as formal theory and public choice. Indeed, some of them were involved in the founding and early meetings of scholarly organizations in these areas. Political science teaching and research took place in numerous CMU colleges but by the early 2000s most teaching and research in political science occurred in the Department of Social and Decision Sciences (SDS). Home also to research and teaching in behavioral economics, complex social systems, decision science, and strategy, entrepreneurship, and technological change, SDS supported a rigorous undergraduate and doctoral program in political science focused on US politics, quantitative methods, formal theory, game theory, and social choice. 

Started during the 1999-2000 academic year, the additional major in international relations stood alongside the political science major. That major, the university’s first full-scale undergraduate teaching program in international relations, was a joint initiative of the Department of History, the Department of Modern Languages, and the Department of Social and Decision Sciences. As student enrollment flourished and the opportunity arose to develop the major’s social science component, the additional major became a stand-alone course of study.  It was renamed International Relations and Politics (IRP) and moved to the Department of Social and Decision Sciences. The name of the major signifies that those studying IRP will learn about international relations and domestic politics from the standpoint of the discipline of political science. 

At the same time, IRP taps into and contributes to CMU’s strengths in other social sciences such as decision science. Decidedly analytical and quantitative, the IRP major preserves and expands CMU’s tradition in political science. 

IRP is the flagship academic program in IPS. The major provides the rich set of courses and programmatic offerings that have made it an attractive course of study for students from all of CMU’s colleges. 

Basic science is the foundation for the public policy activities of IPS. Analytical social science and interdisciplinary research and teaching are used to better understand, explain, anticipate, and solve public policy problems.  

The CMU traditions of analytical political science and applied social science are reflected in the range of degree programs and entities that IPS supports and oversees. The academic programs included in the Institute for Politics and Strategy are:

  • International Relations and Politics Major (primary and additional);
  • International Relations and Politics Minor;
  • Politics and Public Policy Minor;
  • Accelerated Master of Science in International Relations and Politics; and
  • Master of Information Technology Strategy.

The IRP minor shares core courses with the IRP major. The minor in Politics and Public Policy has a greater focus on domestic politics and public policy than either the IRP major or minor.

The Accelerated Master of Science in International Relations and Politics (IRP/AMP) is open only to Carnegie Mellon undergraduate students.  Students should have an undergraduate major, additional major, or minor in International Relations and Politics, they should have participated in the Carnegie Mellon University Washington Semester Program, or they should have special approval from the faculty admissions committee.  Current undergraduates will apply for the IRP/AMP during the junior year. The primary focus of the IRP/AMP is international security, along with additional courses in political institutions.

The Master of Information Technology Strategy (MITS) program provides graduate students with core interdisciplinary competencies in cyber security. The master’s program is a joint initiative of the College of Engineering, Dietrich College, and the School of Computer Science. IPS manages the Dietrich College portion of MITS. The Institute for Software Research, a department in the School of Computer Science, is the administrative home for MITS.

IPS administers these initiatives:

  • The Center for International Relations and Politics;
  • The Carnegie Mellon University Washington Semester Program; and
  • The Institute for Strategic Analysis.

The Center for International Relations and Politics (CIRP) is a university hub for scholarly and policy-oriented activities on domestic and international issues.  CIRP supports and promotes student and faculty research and hosts national and international thought leaders through its Policy Forum.

The Carnegie Mellon University Washington Semester Program (CMU/WSP) is a semester-long program for undergraduates interested in taking courses and interning in Washington.  The minor in Politics and Public Policy may be earned by completing CMU/WSP and taking an additional core course in the International Relations and Politics major. 

Founded in 2013, the Institute for Strategic Analysis facilitates and supports CMU faculty members interested in bringing their scientific research to bear upon problems of national security. These problems include terrorism, cyber challenges, war avoidance, intelligence, and the intersection of energy and security.  ISA facilitates strategic engagements between CMU faculty and leaders in the defense and intelligence community as they seek mutually beneficial ways to have basic research inform national security policy.

The Major in International Relations and Politics

Kiron K. Skinner, Faculty Director; kskinner@andrew.cmu.edu, Porter Hall 223E
Emily Half, Academic Program Manager; ehalf@andrew.cmu.edu, Baker Hall A60C, 412-268-7082
 

The International Relations and Politics (IRP) major analyzes the role of politics at the national, regional, international, and transnational levels; examines political and institutional arrangements within and among these levels; and investigates the grand strategy of nation-states.

Statesmen, scholars, and policy makers often define grand strategy as the combination of diplomatic, economic, military, and political factors used by leaders to defend their respective nation-states. The IRP major investigates the way in which leaders and citizens construct grand strategy and national security policy more generally; the impact of domestic and international forces on states’ security and economic policies; and the significance of alliances, coalitions, and international institutions for world politics.

Although the study of grand strategy and political institutions is the flagship initiative of the major, students are also able to study the effects of culture, economics, and society on the international system through a rich set of elective courses.

Thinking systematically about international and domestic politics is the core objective of the IRP major. To this end, the major has prerequisites in analytical methods, mathematics, and statistics that help to sharpen students’ ability to undertake scientific analysis in the required substantive and historical courses. The major is rooted in the discipline of political science but also utilizes the interdisciplinary strengths of behavioral decision science, complex social systems, economics, and political history. Thus, students pursuing this major will use the analytic tools of game theory, economic and statistical analysis, qualitative analysis, rational choice theory, and theories of behavioral decision making as they study alliances, coalitions, institutions, and political strategy.

Recognizing the influence of language and culture on politics, students are required to complete the intermediate (200) level, or its equivalent, in a modern language other than English. Advanced-level study is strongly encouraged.

Open to all Carnegie Mellon undergraduates, the Carnegie Mellon University Washington Semester Program (CMU/WSP) allows students to study public policy and intern in Washington for one semester. Courses taken through CMU/WSP will count toward the elective sequence in public policy for IRP majors.

Students’ understanding of politics is further informed by courses and colloquia offered by CMU’s top-ranked departments, divisions, and schools in business, computer science, engineering, and the humanities.

IRP majors interested in developing their research skills are encouraged to apply for a research position with the Center for International Relations and Politics. They are also encouraged to join student organizations focused on domestic or international politics. Becoming involved in the Institute for Politics and Strategy, as well as attending lectures and events sponsored by the Center for International Relations and Politics will provide additional opportunities for students.

The International Relations and Politics major is offered through the Institute for Politics and Strategy.  It is available as a primary major and additional major in the Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences.  Minors in International Relations and Politics and Politics and Public Policy are also available.

Prerequisites

All International Relations and Politics majors must complete mathematics and statistics prerequisites by the end of the sophomore year.

Mathematics Prerequisite Units
21-111-21-112Calculus I-II10-20
or 21-120 Differential and Integral Calculus

Students who successfully pass the proctored Calculus Assessment on campus at the 21-120 level will be required to take a more advanced 21-xxx course for this prerequisite. 21-122, 21-240, or 21-256 are suggested.
 

Statistics Prerequisite
36-201Statistical Reasoning and Practice9
Curriculum
Core Courses Units
84-104Decision Processes in American Political Institutions9
84-265Political Science Research Methods9
84-275Comparative Politics9
84-326Theories of International Relations9
84-450Policy Forum6
36-202Statistical Methods9
73-100Principles of Economics9
or 88-220 Policy Analysis I
Language Requirement

Students are required to complete the intermediate (200) level or the equivalent in a modern language other than English.  Advanced level study is strongly encouraged. Students who successfully pass a language placement exam on campus, at the intermediate II level or higher, are required to take an advanced language course to satisfy the language requirement.

45 unitsElectives

International Relations and Politics students will either:

Option 1) take 45 units (five courses) from the elective lists below. At least three courses (27 units) must be from the Institute for Politics and Strategy (84-xxx). Most courses listed below are 9-unit courses, but some are fewer. When courses offered for fewer than 9 units are chosen, students should note that a minimum of 45 units is required, and should plan to take one or more additional courses as appropriate.

OR

Option 2) complete all (or the majority of) their electives via the Carnegie Mellon University Washington Semester Program (CMU/WSP) Public Policy elective sequence. Any elective units not fulfilled during CMU/WSP may be completed through coursework from the Institute for Politics and Strategy (84-xxx) elective list.

The Washington Semester Program (CMUWSP) Public Policy Elective Sequence includes:
  • Policy Forum (12 units) - This course will count as the Policy Forum (84-450) Core Course Requirement.
  • Internship Seminar 84-360 CMU/WSP: Internship Seminar (12 units)
  • CMU/WSP Elective Seminars (24 units total)

A list of CMU/WSP Elective Seminars may be found in the CMU/WSP section of the undergraduate catalog below.

Grand Strategy and Political Institutions Units
79-203Social and Political Change in 20th Century Central and Eastern Europe9
79-231American Foreign Policy: 1945-Present9
79-298Mobile Phones & Social Media in Development & Human Rights: A Critical Appraisal6
79-301History of Surveillance: From the Plantation to Edward Snowden6
79-302Drone Warfare: Ethics, Law, Politics, History, and Strategy6
79-389Stalin and Stalinism9
80-135Introduction to Political Philosophy9
80-321Causation, Law, and Social Policy9
80-335Deliberative Democracy: Theory and Practice9
84-309Political Behavior9
84-320Domestic Politics and International Affairs9
84-321Autocrats and Democrats9
84-322Attitudes, the Media, and Conflict in International Relations9
84-323War and Peace9
84-324Democracies and War9
84-362Diplomacy and Statecraft9
84-366Presidential Politics: So, You Want to Be President of the United States9
84-380Grand Strategy in the United States9
84-386The Privatization of Force9
84-387Technology and Policy of Cyber War6
84-388Concepts of War and Cyber War6
84-389Terrorism and Insurgency9
84-393Legislative Decision Making: US Congress9
84-402Judicial Politics and Behavior9
84-414International and Subnational Security9
88-281Topics in Law: 1st Amendment9
88-284Topics of Law: The Bill of Rights9
Economics and Society Units
70-342Managing Across Cultures9
70-365International Trade and International Law9
70-430International Management9
73-148Environmental Economics9
73-328Health Economics12
73-331Political Economy of Inequality and Redistribution9
73-375History of Money and Monetary Policy9
73-394Development Economics9
79-386Entrepreneurs in Africa, Past, Present and Future9
80-136Social Structure, Public Policy & Ethics9
80-244Environmental Ethics9
80-247Ethics and Global Economics9
80-348Health Development and Human Rights9
80-447Global Justice9
84-310International Political Economy and Organizations9
88-411Rise of the Asian Economies9
88-412Energy, Climate Change, and Economic Growth in the 21st Century9
International Cultures Units
76-318Communicating in the Global Marketplace9
76-322Global Masala: South Asians in the Diaspora9
76-386Language & Culture9
79-20520th/21st Century Europe9
79-221Development and Democracy in Latin America9
79-222Between Revolutions: The Development of Modern Latin America9
79-223Mexico: From the Aztec Empire to the Drug War9
79-224Mayan America9
79-227African History: Height of Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade to the End of Apartheid9
79-229Origins of the Arab-Israeli Conflict, 1880-19489
79-230Arab-Israeli Conflict and Peace Process since 19489
79-233The United States and the Middle East since 19459
79-251India/America: Democracy, Diversity, Development9
79-25620th Century Germany9
79-257Germany and the Second World War9
79-259France During World War II9
79-262Modern China9
79-264Tibet in History and Imagination9
79-265Russian History: From the First to the Last Tsar9
79-266Russian History: From Communism to Capitalism9
79-267The Soviet Union in World War II: Military, Political, and Social History9
79-275Introduction to Global Studies9
79-288Bananas, Baseball, and Borders: Latin America and the United States9
79-291Globalization in East African History6
79-307Religion and Politics in the Middle East9
79-314The Politics and Culture of Memory9
79-320Women, Politics, and Protest9
79-338History of Education in America9
79-342Introduction to Science and Technology Studies9
79-377Food, Culture, and Power: A History of Eating9
79-381Energy and Empire: How Fossil Fuels Changed the World9
79-385The Making of the African Diaspora9
79-398Documenting the 1967 Arab-Israeli War9
82-304The Francophone World9
82-320Contemporary Society in Germany, Austria and Switzerland9
82-323Germany, Austria and Switzerland in the 20th Century9
82-333Introduction to Chinese Language and CultureVar.
82-342Spain: Language and Culture9
82-343Latin America: Language and Culture9
82-344U.S. Latinos: Language and Culture9
82-345Introduction to Hispanic Literary and Cultural Studies9
82-361Italian Language and Culture I9
82-362Italian Language and Culture II9
82-433Topics in Contemporary Culture of China9
82-441Studies in Peninsular Literature and Culture9
82-451Studies in Latin American Literature and Culture9
82-455Topics in Hispanic Studies9
82-474Topics in Japanese Studies9
85-375Crosscultural Psychology9
300 or 400- level language course (at most one for this category)

NOTE: Some courses have additional prerequisites.

International Relations and Politics, B.S.

These sample curricula represent a plan for completing the requirements for the B.S. in International Relations and Politics. International Relations and Politics students are encouraged to spend a semester studying and interning in Washington, DC, through the CMU/WSP, and/or study abroad. The plan below demonstrates that a semester off-campus fits well into the curriculum. As with most majors in the Dietrich College, the International Relations and Politics major can be completed in as few as two years of undergraduate study, not that it must be. Students may declare the B.S. in International Relations and Politics and take appropriate courses as early as the second semester of the freshman year and as late as the second semester sophomore year, and should consult frequently with the academic program manager (see above) about their course of study.

FreshmanSophomore
FallSpringFallSpring
36-201 Statistical Reasoning and Practice76-101 Interpretation and Argument84-265 Political Science Research Methods84-275 Comparative Politics
79-104 Global HistoriesFreshman Seminar84-326 Theories of International RelationsIRP Elective
21-120 Differential and Integral Calculus*36-202 Statistical MethodsLanguage Course or Gen EdIRP Elective
84-104 Decision Processes in American Political Institutions **73-100 Principles of Economics or take 88-220 in fall of sophomore yearIRP ElectiveLanguage Course or Gen Ed
Language Course or Gen EdLanguage Course or Gen EdGen Ed or ElectiveElective
99-101 Computing @ Carnegie Mellon

*If required to start with 21-111 in fall of freshman year, complete 21-112 in spring of freshman year.

**This course should be taken as the first course in the International Relations and Politics major sequence. It is intended for students in their first or second years.

JuniorSenior
FallSpringFallSpring
IRP ElectiveCMU/WSP or STUDY ABROAD*66-501 H&SS Senior Honors Thesis I**84-450 Policy Forum
Language Course or ElectiveIRP ElectiveIRP Elective66-502 H&SS Senior Honors Thesis II**
ElectiveElectiveElectiveElective
ElectiveElectiveElectiveElective
ElectiveElectiveElectiveElective
Elective

*All students are strongly encouraged to participate in the CMU/WSP  and/or in a study abroad program.  Spring semester of the junior year is a popular semester to study off-campus. However, International Relations and Politics majors may instead choose to participate in the CMU/WSP or study abroad in spring of sophomore year, fall of junior year, or fall of senior year. Students should consult the academic program manager when planning their curricular program.

**Students are not required to complete a college honors thesis. However, many International Relations and Politics majors choose to apply for the senior honors thesis program. Students who do not pursue a senior honors thesis should select an elective in its place.

Additional Major

Students who elect International Relations and Politics as an additional major must fulfill all of the requirements of the International Relations and Politics major.

Minor in International Relations and Politics

The International Relations and Politics (IRP) minor analyzes the role of politics at the national, regional, international, and transnational levels; examines political and institutional arrangements within and among these levels; and investigates the grand strategy of nation-states.

Statesmen, scholars, and policy makers often define grand strategy as the combination of diplomatic, economic, military, and political factors used by leaders to defend their respective nation-states. The IRP minor investigates the way in which leaders and citizens construct grand strategy and national security policy more generally; the impact of domestic and international forces on states’ security and economic policies; and the significance of alliances, coalitions, and international institutions for world politics. The study of grand strategy and political institutions is the flagship initiative of the minor.

In the tradition of Carnegie Mellon University, political science is studied and taught in an interdisciplinary manner.  Utilizing the interdisciplinary strengths of the social sciences at CMU, IRP students study political phenomena through the perspectives of behavioral decision science, complex social systems, economics, strategy, entrepreneurship and technological change, and political history. Students pursing the minor may find it helpful to develop their analytical tools of game theory, economic and statistical analysis, qualitative analysis, rational choice theory, and theories of behavioral decision making as they study alliances, coalitions, institutions, and political strategy.  Recognizing the influence of language and culture on politics and international relations, students are encouraged to study a modern language other than English.

The International Relations and Politics minor is offered through the Institute for Politics and Strategy.  It is available as a minor in the Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences. 

Prerequisites
73-100Principles of Economics9
or 88-220 Policy Analysis I
Curriculum

54 units

Students must take all three core courses (27 units):

84-104Decision Processes in American Political Institutions9
84-275Comparative Politics9
84-326Theories of International Relations9

Students select three courses (27 units) from any of the elective sequences below.  Two courses must be taken from the Institute for Politics and Strategy and have an 84-number course:

Grand Strategy and Political Institutions
79-203Social and Political Change in 20th Century Central and Eastern Europe9
79-231American Foreign Policy: 1945-Present9
79-298Mobile Phones & Social Media in Development & Human Rights: A Critical Appraisal6
79-301History of Surveillance: From the Plantation to Edward Snowden6
79-302Drone Warfare: Ethics, Law, Politics, History, and Strategy6
79-389Stalin and Stalinism9
80-135Introduction to Political Philosophy9
80-321Causation, Law, and Social Policy9
80-335Deliberative Democracy: Theory and Practice9
84-309Political Behavior9
84-320Domestic Politics and International Affairs9
84-321Autocrats and Democrats9
84-322Attitudes, the Media, and Conflict in International Relations9
84-323War and Peace9
84-324Democracies and War9
84-362Diplomacy and Statecraft9
84-366Presidential Politics: So, You Want to Be President of the United States9
84-380Grand Strategy in the United States9
84-386The Privatization of Force9
84-387Technology and Policy of Cyber War6
84-388Concepts of War and Cyber War6
84-389Terrorism and Insurgency9
84-393Legislative Decision Making: US Congress9
84-402Judicial Politics and Behavior9
84-414International and Subnational Security9
88-281Topics in Law: 1st Amendment9
88-284Topics of Law: The Bill of Rights9
Economics and Society
70-342Managing Across Cultures9
70-365International Trade and International Law9
70-430International Management9
73-148Environmental Economics9
73-328Health Economics12
73-331Political Economy of Inequality and Redistribution9
73-375History of Money and Monetary Policy9
73-394Development Economics9
79-386Entrepreneurs in Africa, Past, Present and Future9
80-136Social Structure, Public Policy & Ethics9
80-244Environmental Ethics9
80-247Ethics and Global Economics9
80-348Health Development and Human Rights9
80-447Global Justice9
84-310International Political Economy and Organizations9
88-411Rise of the Asian Economies9
88-412Energy, Climate Change, and Economic Growth in the 21st Century9
International Cultures
76-318Communicating in the Global Marketplace9
76-322Global Masala: South Asians in the Diaspora9
76-386Language & Culture9
79-20520th/21st Century Europe9
79-221Development and Democracy in Latin America9
79-222Between Revolutions: The Development of Modern Latin America9
79-223Mexico: From the Aztec Empire to the Drug War9
79-224Mayan America9
79-227African History: Height of Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade to the End of Apartheid9
79-229Origins of the Arab-Israeli Conflict, 1880-19489
79-230Arab-Israeli Conflict and Peace Process since 19489
79-233The United States and the Middle East since 19459
79-251India/America: Democracy, Diversity, Development9
79-25620th Century Germany9
79-257Germany and the Second World War9
79-259France During World War II9
79-262Modern China9
79-264Tibet in History and Imagination9
79-265Russian History: From the First to the Last Tsar9
79-266Russian History: From Communism to Capitalism9
79-267The Soviet Union in World War II: Military, Political, and Social History9
79-275Introduction to Global Studies9
79-288Bananas, Baseball, and Borders: Latin America and the United States9
79-291Globalization in East African History6
79-307Religion and Politics in the Middle East9
79-314The Politics and Culture of Memory9
79-320Women, Politics, and Protest9
79-338History of Education in America9
79-342Introduction to Science and Technology Studies9
79-377Food, Culture, and Power: A History of Eating9
79-381Energy and Empire: How Fossil Fuels Changed the World9
79-385The Making of the African Diaspora9
79-398Documenting the 1967 Arab-Israeli War9
82-304The Francophone World9
82-320Contemporary Society in Germany, Austria and Switzerland9
82-323Germany, Austria and Switzerland in the 20th Century9
82-333Introduction to Chinese Language and CultureVar.
82-342Spain: Language and Culture9
82-343Latin America: Language and Culture9
82-344U.S. Latinos: Language and Culture9
82-345Introduction to Hispanic Literary and Cultural Studies9
82-361Italian Language and Culture I9
82-362Italian Language and Culture II9
82-433Topics in Contemporary Culture of China9
82-441Studies in Peninsular Literature and Culture9
82-451Studies in Latin American Literature and Culture9
82-455Topics in Hispanic Studies9
82-474Topics in Japanese Studies9
85-375Crosscultural Psychology9

Minor in Politics and Public Policy

Rooted in the discipline of political science, the minor in Politics and Public Policy investigates U.S. public policy issues and other matters of domestic politics while providing students hands-on and practical learning experiences.  Students pursuing the Politics and Public Policy minor must participate in the Carnegie Mellon University Washington Semester Program for one semester during their undergraduate experience.

From embassy headquarters to nongovernmental organizations, think tanks to advocacy organizations, and consulting firms to media outlets, Washington, DC, is a focal point for many international and public policy activities. Open to all Carnegie Mellon undergraduates, the Carnegie Mellon University Washington Semester Program (CMU/WSP) allows students to study public policy and intern in Washington for one semester. Undergraduates from any course of study who would value firsthand policy experience are invited to apply to the Carnegie Mellon University Washington Semester Program and declare a minor in Politics and Public Policy. 

In this semester-long program, students live, work, and study in Washington, DC, coming into direct contact with political, business, and community leaders and learning about the most pressing policy issues of the day. 

Students earn 48 units for the Carnegie Mellon University Washington Semester Program, interning three days per week in any sector or field of interest within Washington, DC, while taking classes two days per week and in the evenings. Courses are taught by Carnegie Mellon faculty.  The Institute for Politics and Strategy sponsors events and a policy oriented opportunities in Washington for students participating in the program to further enrich their experience and enhance their understanding of how Washington functions as a hub of international and public policy decision making. 

The minor in Politics and Public Policy is offered through the Institute for Politics and Strategy in the Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Prerequisites
73-100Principles of Economics9
or 88-220 Policy Analysis I
Curriculum

57 units

All students must take the following two courses while participating in the CMU/WSP (24 units):

Core Seminars
84-360CMU/WSP: Internship Seminar12
84-450Policy Forum6
84-450Policy Forum6

Students must take 24 units from the below list of elective seminars offered in the CMU/WSP. Offerings vary by semester. (24 units):

Elective Seminars
84-330CMU/WSP: The United States Supreme Court12
84-331CMU/WSP: Congress12
84-332CMU/WSP: Washington Media12
84-333CMU/WSP: General Research Seminar12
84-334CMU/WSP: International Policy12
84-336Implementing Public Policy: From Good Idea To Reality12
84-340CMU/WSP: American Political Journalism12
84-341CMU/WSP: U.S. Foreign Policy in the Middle East12
84-342CMU/WSP: Economics of Public Policy12
84-343Language and Power: How to Understand and Use Political Speech6
84-347CMU/WSP: Lobbying, Money, and Influence in Washington12
84-348Advocacy, Policy and Practice6
84-349CMU/WSP: The Theater of Politics12
84-350CMU/WSP: Campaigns and Elections12

Students select one course from the following list of courses offered at Carnegie Mellon University’s Pittsburgh or Qatar campus.  Students may take this course before or after participating in the CMU/WSP. (9 units):

84-104Decision Processes in American Political Institutions9
84-275Comparative Politics9
84-326Theories of International Relations9

Carnegie Mellon University Washington Semester Program

Kiron Skinner, Faculty Director; kskinner@andrew.cmu.edu, Porter Hall 223E
Emily Half, Academic Program Manager; ehalf@andrew.cmu.edu; 412-268-7082, Baker Hall A60C
Emily Baddock, Program Director in Washington, DC; ebaddock@andrew.cmu.edu; 202-608-8316, 100 Maryland Ave NE, Suite 510, Washington, DC 20002

http://www.cmu.edu/ips/cmuwsp/index.html

From embassy headquarters to nongovernmental organizations, think tanks to advocacy organizations, and consulting firms to media outlets, Washington, DC, is a focal point for many international and public policy activities.

Undergraduates from any course of study who would value firsthand policy experience are invited to apply to the Carnegie Mellon University Washington Semester Program (CMU/WSP), sponsored by the university's Institute for Politics and Strategy.  In this semester-long program, students live, work, and study in Washington, DC, coming into direct contact with political, business, and community leaders and learning about the most pressing policy issues of the day. 

CMU/WSP students earn 48 units for their semester in Washington, interning three days per week in any sector or field of interest within Washington, DC, while taking classes two days per week and in the evenings. Courses are taught by Carnegie Mellon faculty.  The Institute for Politics and Strategy sponsors events and a policy oriented opportunities in Washington for students participating in the program to further enrich their experience and enhance their understanding of how Washington functions as a hub of international and public policy decision making. 

Students should contact the academic program manager for more information or to discuss how the CMU/WSP may fit into their curriculum.

Curriculum

All students enroll in the following core seminars (24 units).

Core Seminars
84-360CMU/WSP: Internship Seminar12
84-450Policy Forum6
84-450Policy Forum6

Students enroll in 24 units from the below list of elective seminars.  Offerings vary by semester.

Elective Seminars
84-330CMU/WSP: The United States Supreme Court12
84-331CMU/WSP: Congress12
84-332CMU/WSP: Washington Media12
84-333CMU/WSP: General Research Seminar12
84-334CMU/WSP: International Policy12
84-336Implementing Public Policy: From Good Idea To Reality12
84-340CMU/WSP: American Political Journalism12
84-341CMU/WSP: U.S. Foreign Policy in the Middle East12
84-342CMU/WSP: Economics of Public Policy12
84-343Language and Power: How to Understand and Use Political Speech6
84-347CMU/WSP: Lobbying, Money, and Influence in Washington12
84-348Advocacy, Policy and Practice6
84-349CMU/WSP: The Theater of Politics12
84-350CMU/WSP: Campaigns and Elections12

Accelerated Master of Science in International Relations and Politics

The accelerated Master of Science in International Relations and Politics (IRP/AMP) is open only to Carnegie Mellon undergraduate students.  Students should have an undergraduate major, additional major, or minor in International Relations and Politics, they should have participated in the Carnegie Mellon University Washington Semester Program, or they should have special approval from the faculty admissions committee. 

Students interested in applying for the IRP/AMP should consult with the Academic Program Manager in the sophomore or junior year for details and advice on shaping undergraduate coursework to qualify for the program.  Current undergraduates will apply for the IRP/AMP during the junior year. Detailed information on the IRP/AMP curriculum is available on the Institute for Politics and Strategy website

Intellectual Rationale

At the end of the Cold War, there was widespread belief among democratic elites that the end of history finally had arrived.  They predicted that the United States (indeed the West, if not the world) would benefit from the peace dividend resulting from the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the undisputed role of the United States as the world’s predominant power.  But the spread of democracy across Eastern Europe and Latin America as the Cold War ended has been met with highly unanticipated reversals.  Relations among nation-states are in flux.  In the twenty-first century, the United States has been engaged in continuous Middle East and South Asian wars, intense territorial disputes among the great powers (US, China, and Russia) are redefining the international landscape, civil wars routinely spill over into larger regional conflicts, and cyber warfare and terrorism intersect in deadly ways. 

For the generation of students we are now teaching, war has been a constant in their lifetime.  Accordingly, the primary focus of the International Relations and Politics Accelerated Master’s Program (IRP/AMP) is international security.  

Perhaps at no time since the interwar period of the twentieth century has there been so much uncertainty about what path the international system will take and how states will internally organize themselves.  During this current period of uncertainty, transformation, and chaos, there is no denying President Barack Obama’s dictum: The United States is the world’s indispensable nation.  In other words, the United States is the main nation-state actor that helps to organize and enforce norms in the anarchic international system.  It is a system marked by the absence of any authority above states or any commonly agreed-upon authority for the use of force – the opposite of domestic society.  Perforce, understanding domestic political institutions must be a component of the accelerated master’s program. 

It is important to comprehend how the political institutions of other nations function because domestic political processes of all sorts help to shape international relations.  Theorists of international relations no longer contend, as they did a half century ago, that politics stops at the water’s edge.  International security will be the area of concentration in this accelerated master’s program.  Courses in political institutions also will be integral to IRP/AMP because they will enrich students’ scientific understanding of political processes. 

Executive Committee and Affiliated Faculty

KIRON K. SKINNER, Associate Professor of International Relations and Political Science; Institute Director – Ph.D., Harvard University; Carnegie Mellon, 1999–.
KATHLEEN CARLEY, Professor – Ph.D., Harvard University; Carnegie Mellon, 1984–.
BARUCH FISCHHOFF, Howard Heinz University Professor in the Institute for Politics and Strategy and Department of Engineering and Public Policy – Ph.D., The Hebrew University of Jerusalem; Carnegie Mellon, 1987–.
ALLAN H. MELTZER, The Allan H. Meltzer University Professor of Political Economy – Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles; Carnegie Mellon, 1957–.

Lecturers

COLIN P. CLARKE, Lecturing Faculty in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh; Carnegie Mellon, 2014–.
MOLLY DUNIGAN, Lecturing Faculty in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., Cornell University; Carnegie Mellon, 2014–.
GEOFFREY MCGOVERN, Lecturing Faculty in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., Binghamton University., J.D., Harvard University; Carnegie Mellon, 2013–.

Fellows

FRED CRAWFORD, Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – J.D., Georgetown University; Carnegie Mellon, 2017–.
JOSEPH E. DEVINE, Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies; Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., Carnegie Mellon; Carnegie Mellon, 1978–.
ADAM GARFINKLE, Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania; Carnegie Mellon, 2016–.
THOMAS KARAKO, Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., Claremont Graduate University; Carnegie Mellon, 2015–.
BEVERLEY WHEELER, Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – D.Ed., Harvard University; Carnegie Mellon, 2012–.

Post-Doctoral Fellows

ANDREW BAUSCH, Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., New York University; Carnegie Mellon, 2013–.
JOHN J. CHIN, Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., Princeton University; Carnegie Mellon, 2016–.
DOV H. LEVIN, Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles; Carnegie Mellon, 2016–.

Adjunct Faculty

ISAAC R. PORCHE III, – Ph.D., University of Michigan; Carnegie Mellon, 2017–.
CHAD C. SERENA, – Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh; Carnegie Mellon, 2016–.

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Executive Committee and Affiliated Faculty

KIRON K. SKINNER, Associate Professor of International Relations and Political Science; Institute Director – Ph.D., Harvard University; Carnegie Mellon, 1999–.
KATHLEEN CARLEY, Professor – Ph.D., Harvard University; Carnegie Mellon, 1984–.
BARUCH FISCHHOFF, Howard Heinz University Professor in the Institute for Politics and Strategy and Department of Engineering and Public Policy – Ph.D., The Hebrew University of Jerusalem; Carnegie Mellon, 1987–.
ALLAN H. MELTZER, The Allan H. Meltzer University Professor of Political Economy – Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles; Carnegie Mellon, 1957–.

Lecturers

COLIN P. CLARKE, Lecturing Faculty in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh; Carnegie Mellon, 2014–.
MOLLY DUNIGAN, Lecturing Faculty in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., Cornell University; Carnegie Mellon, 2014–.
GEOFFREY MCGOVERN, Lecturing Faculty in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., Binghamton University., J.D., Harvard University; Carnegie Mellon, 2013–.

Fellows

FRED CRAWFORD, Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – J.D., Georgetown University; Carnegie Mellon, 2017–.
JOSEPH E. DEVINE, Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies; Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., Carnegie Mellon; Carnegie Mellon, 1978–.
ADAM GARFINKLE, Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania; Carnegie Mellon, 2016–.
THOMAS KARAKO, Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., Claremont Graduate University; Carnegie Mellon, 2015–.
BEVERLEY WHEELER, Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – D.Ed., Harvard University; Carnegie Mellon, 2012–.

Post-Doctoral Fellows

ANDREW BAUSCH, Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., New York University; Carnegie Mellon, 2013–.
JOHN J. CHIN, Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., Princeton University; Carnegie Mellon, 2016–.
DOV H. LEVIN, Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy – Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles; Carnegie Mellon, 2016–.

Adjunct Faculty

ISAAC R. PORCHE III, – Ph.D., University of Michigan; Carnegie Mellon, 2017–.
CHAD C. SERENA, – Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh; Carnegie Mellon, 2016–.