pol5qaq states in transition




Credit points: 30

Subject outline

Across the world today, a diverse range of states are undergoing complex and often violent processes of transition. From states emerging from civil wars in Africa, Eastern Europe, the Caribbean, Asia and the Pacific, to those that the Arab Spring swept through in 2011-2013, the international community has been faced with the difficult task of supporting these transitions through state building, peace building, and development. This subject explores the way the international community engages in these deeply contested processes of social and political change, the dominant approaches taken, and their effectiveness in supporting states to transition out of oppressive regimes or civil wars. It uses a series of in-depth case-studies to explore different aspects of transitions and the challenges they entail. It encourages students to consider states in transition in the context of local, national, regional and international politics and processes, and the interaction between them.

SchoolSchool of Humanities & Social Sciences

Credit points30

Subject Co-ordinatorJasmine-Kim Westendorf

Available to Study Abroad StudentsYes

Subject year levelYear Level 5 - Masters

Exchange StudentsYes

Subject particulars

Subject rules

Prerequisites Enrolment in the Master of International Relations (AMIR/AMIRL/AMIRH/AMIRS), Graduate Diploma of International Relations(AGIR), Graduate Certificate of International Relations (ACIR), Master of International Development (AMID/AMIDV/AMIDH/HZHPHID/HZPHID), Graduate Diploma of International Development(AGDST) or Graduate Certificate of International Development (ACDST).


Incompatible subjectsN/A

Equivalent subjectsN/A

Special conditionsN/A

Graduate capabilities & intended learning outcomes

01. Students will have mastery of the theoretical knowledge concerning peacebuilding in transitional states.

Policy brief, research essay, class presentation

02. Students will have extensive knowledge of recent developments and professional practice in the field of peacebuilding, statebuilding, and international responses to states in transition.

Policy brief, research essay, class presentation

03. Students will used their advanced conceptual knowledge and research skills to critically examine case studies of transition in states emerging from civil war or regime change, in order to identify and provide policy recommendations that can be communicated to specialist and non-specialist audiences.

Policy brief, research essay, class presentation

04. To understand the benefits of comparisons and case studies as a methodology in International Relations

Research essay

Subject options

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Start date between: and    Key dates

Melbourne, 2015, Semester 1, Day


Online enrolmentYes

Maximum enrolment sizeN/A

Enrolment information

Subject Instance Co-ordinatorJasmine-Kim Westendorf

Class requirements

SeminarWeek: 10 - 22
One 3.0 hours seminar per week on weekdays during the day from week 10 to week 22 and delivered via blended.


Assessment elementComments%ILO*
One 5,000-word Research Essay6001, 02, 03, 04
One class presentation (equivalent to 1,500-words)1501, 02, 03, 04
One 2500-word situation brief2501, 02, 03, 04