Spring 2022 - IS 306 D100

State Failure and Reconstruction (4)

Class Number: 7773

Delivery Method: In Person

Overview

  • Course Times + Location:

    Tu 8:30 AM – 11:20 AM
    HCC 1530, Vancouver

  • Prerequisites:

    45 units.

Description

CALENDAR DESCRIPTION:

Examines the causes of state fragility and collapse, and assesses the challenges of reconstruction. Focusing on cases from different regions, we will explore the security dimensions of state fragility; the role of humanitarian intervention; the challenge of building democratic institutions in divided societies; and, the relationship between statebuilding and peacebuilding. Students who have taken IS 409 with this topic may not take this course for further credit.

COURSE DETAILS:

This course examines the causes of state fragility and collapse, and assesses the challenges of reconstruction. Focusing on cases from regions across the globe, we will explore the security dimensions of state fragility; the role of humanitarian intervention; the challenge of building democratic institutions in divided societies; and, the relationship between statebuilding and peacebuilding. While most of the course will be retrospecive in nature, we will also look forward to future challenges to statehood, particularly in the form of climate breakdown, and the attendant challenges states will face as a result of the social, political, and economic ramifications thereof, including the looming literal disappearance of some states, and crises to state legitimacy and capacity caused by refugee and migrant flows, and the potential for civil conflict. In addition, we will assess, and critique, theoretical perspectives on what Chesterman has called the ’new interventionism’ wherein it is argued that global powers have used (and abused) the United Nations Security Council to provide humanitarian and legitimating cover for what may be seen as self-interested purposes.

COURSE-LEVEL EDUCATIONAL GOALS:

Upon completion of this course, you should be able to:

  • Understand the concept of the modern state and the related concepts of statehood, sovereignty, and state responsibility.
  • Understand the characteristics that make states strong and durable, as well as the factors that contribute to state decay, and state failure.
  • Demonstrate knowledge about, and be able to discuss & critique, the role of international institutions such as the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the European Union (and others) in both protecting, and undermining, the strength of modern states.
  • Learn about, and understand, the role of civil society in both abetting, and mitigating, state failure.
  • Assess the explanatory value of contending perspectives and theories on state failure.
  • Specically understand the current, and impending, impact of climate change on issues related to state failure, such as im(migration), economic precariousness, and environmental degradation.
  • Become familiar with issues related to state-building in various regions around the world and the factors that contribute to its successes, and failures.
  • Use the knowledge gained in the course, along with individual research, to write a 15-page research paper that comparatively addresses a specific topic covered.
  • Demonstrate enhanced writing skills over the course of the semester.

Grading

  • Participation/Attendance 20%
  • Reading Discussion Papers (2) 20%
  • Research Paper 30%
  • Final Exam 30%

NOTES:

Students will be required to submit their written assignments to Turnitin.com in order to receive credit for the assignments and for the course.

The School for International Studies strictly enforces the University's policies regarding plagiarism and other forms of academic dishonesty. Information about these policies can be found at: http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/teaching.html.

Materials

REQUIRED READING:

978-0-203-37037-7 (ebk) Chandler, David and Timothy D. Sisk. The Routledge Handbook of International Statebuilding. 2013.

978-0-19-534269-7 Ghani Ashraf, and Clare Lockhart. Fixing Failed States: A Framework for Rebuilding a Fractured World. Oxford: Oxford University Press. 2009.

Additional readings provided.

Registrar Notes:

ACADEMIC INTEGRITY: YOUR WORK, YOUR SUCCESS

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html

TEACHING AT SFU IN SPRING 2022

Teaching at SFU in spring 2022 will involve primarily in-person instruction, with safety plans in place.  Some courses will still be offered through remote methods, and if so, this will be clearly identified in the schedule of classes.  You will also know at enrollment whether remote course components will be “live” (synchronous) or at your own pace (asynchronous).

Enrolling in a course acknowledges that you are able to attend in whatever format is required.  You should not enroll in a course that is in-person if you are not able to return to campus, and should be aware that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who may need class or exam accommodations, including in the context of remote learning, are advised to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112) as early as possible in order to prepare for the spring 2022 term.