Department of Politics and International Relations

The Department of Politics and International Relations (DPIR) at Oxford is an internationally renowned centre of excellence for teaching and research. The study of these disciplines at Oxford has a long and distinguished history and the department is now one of the largest in the field in the UK.


DPIR Research

DPIR seeks to deepen scholarly understanding of government, politics and international relations and to contribute to practical solutions to problems of power, conflict and injustice in political and social life. Our research is organised through the three intersecting fields of Government and Politics, Political Theory and International Relations; our approach is inter-disciplinary with roots in history, philosophy and social science, both statistical and interpretive and ethnographic. We emphasise the rigorous interaction of epistemology and methodology, with developing techniques and methods, and the highest standards of scholarship, to produce research that has impact both academically and publicly.


DPIR Research on War and Peace

Recent work on war and peace within the DPIR has covered:  

  • the role of external actors in war and violent conflict, in state-building, and in post-conflict and peace-consolidation;
  • the historical and theoretical links between different forms of violent conflict and patterns of major power relations;
  • emerging powers and global order, including emerging powers and the global nuclear order;
  • the role of international law and legal and ethical norms in violent conflict, including the history of just war thinking, the responsibility to protect, and international and transnational criminal justice;
  • the history of thought on war and security;
  • the relationship between human rights, transitional justice, development and democracy;
  • the role of the United Nations, including the UN Security Council and war,  peacekeeping operations and the evolution of security ideas within the UN, including human security;
  • comparative regional security and the evolving roles of regional role of security institutions;
  • civil resistance and power politics;
  • religion and conflict;
  • the inter-disciplinary study of conflict, including evolutionary theory and social psychology, and the role of emotions.

Those involved in graduate teaching and research on war and peace include: Professor Richard Caplan; Professor Louise Fawcett; Professor Elizabeth Frazer; Professor Todd Hall; Professor Andrew Hurrell; Dr Annette Idler; Professor Dominic Johnson; Professor Edward Keene; Dr Lucas Kello; Professor Neil MacFarlane; Dr Jonathan Leader Maynard; Professor Rana Mitter; Professor Karma Nabulsi; Professor Andrea Ruggieri; Professor Gwen Sasse; and Professor Ricardo Soares de Oliveira. There is a large doctoral programme and a flourishing post-doctoral community.


To find out about upcoming events at DPIR, please follow this link.