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Associate Professor Dr. Jonathan Boyd was born near Toronto in Canada and received a BA (Hons) in Political Science with a minor in Biology from McMaster University, and an MA in Political Theory from the University of Western Ontario. Directly afterwards, he worked at a Toronto daily newspaper in the advertising department. He then decided to pursue a PhD, and received a scholarship to study International Relations at the University of St Andrews, Scotland, which is the third oldest university in the English-speaking world, established in 1413.
After being awarded his PhD, Dr. Boyd worked briefly for the Centre for Global Constitutionalism in St Andrews, then moved to London to lecture at the University of Reading. He began teaching at ISM University in 2015, and his teaching portfolio includes: International Relations, History of Political Thought, Macroeconomics, and Microeconomics.
Dr. Jonathan Boyd also teaches regularly in London: he is an Adjunct Professor for the overseas programme of James Madison University, in which he teaches British Media & Politics; he teaches a Human Rights course for University of Connecticut Business School; and he teaches a British/European Politics course for the Catholic University of America.
Associate Professor has participated in numerous international academic conferences, including:
· Challenges of Europe, Croatia
· International Studies Association, Toronto
· International Studies Association, San Francisco
· Nuceleo de Estudantes de Relacoes Internacionais da Universidade de Evora, Portugal
· British International Studies Association, Edinburgh
· British International Studies Association, Manchester
· Workshops in Political Theory, Manchester
· Grupos de Trabajo del VIII Congreso de nuestra Asociacion, Valencia, Spain
“I work at ISM because I find teaching ISM students to be incredibly rewarding: ISM students are ambitious, clever, and curious, and the best ISM students are without a doubt world-class. I want each ISM student that I teach to be able to compete in the global marketplace of ideas, and my small contribution to that aim is to share my international experience.
My main goal at ISM is to bring the latest and best ideas and teaching material from abroad, and introduce them to ISM students. I am always on the lookout for different approaches and distinctive material. At ISM, for instance, I have recently introduced a new open-source platform called Core Econ — which is a revolutionary and interactive way to teach modern economics – and it is ideal for ISM students who want be at the forefront of economic thinking and want to understand the most pressing economic issues of our age: innovation, inequality, and environmental sustainability.
Curiosity is the foundation of learning, and therefore each of my lectures or seminars is based on a particular question or a problem that I believe will spark the curiosity of ISM students. For instance, one of my economics lectures begins with the question: will robots and AI replace our jobs? One of my international relations lectures begins with the question: why is it so hard for the world‘s nations to cooperate on climate change action? And one of my history of political thought lectures begins with the question: to exercise power effectively, is it better for a leader to be feared or loved?
As for my leisure time, I live a quiet life, and enjoy walking my dog through the parks and nature trails in and around Vilnius, and hunting for books in London‘s used bookstores. I also watch far more Hollywood films than an otherwise cultured professor probably should.
This course is an introduction to International Relations (IR), which is a branch of Political Science that studies the political and social consequences of the division of the world into separate territorially-based political units. It is also typically extended to include international organisations and non-state actors, and it focuses on issues broadly conceived of as having global—rather than limitedly domestic or local—significance.
The course is divided into four parts. In part one, students will be provided with background knowledge of the historical evolution of the state system. Building on that, students will then explore the central explanatory concepts of IR—power, interest, and identity—and their IR theory counterparts—Realism, Liberalism, and Constructivism. In the second part, students will engage with and learn the methods of a compelling alternative theoretical approach to IR: the Strategic Perspective. It both challenges and differs significantly from traditional theories of IR by arguing that the preferences of leaders and their constituents—rather than national interests or the state system—are the primary drivers of foreign policy. In the final sections, students will use this Strategic Perspective and the logic of strategic interaction to explain major characteristics of, events, and trends in global politics. The focus of the fourth part will be warfare and conflict; specifically, the use of military force, military alliances, nuclear deterrence, terrorism and military intervention. The fifth part will examine significant aspects of peace, governance and world order, namely, international organisations, climate change, human rights and international law.
Aim of the Course
The course will introduce students to the academic study of International Relations (IR), and give an overview of the major concepts, traditional theories and pressing issues in contemporary global politics. The primary aims of the course are to provide students with (i) a perspective of international relations as being predominately driven by individually-motivated strategies that shape war, peace, and world order; (ii) an understanding of the strategic calculations underlying the actions of the leaders of nations, international organisations and non-governmental interest groups; and (iii) the tools to understand empirical regularities by using strategic theory approaches.
Futures Thinking is a multidisciplinary method for thinking constructively and creatively about the future, starting from the assumption that the future is not something that will happen to us tomorrow but is being created by us today. Students will be introduced to the major changes that will occur in the next 10, 20 or more years, including global warming, inequality, global health, the future of work, among others. In each area, students will undertand how experts have created scenarios to cope with uncertainty, identify dynamics, develop policy choices, assess alternatives, and ultimately, make decisions. Students will be immersed in Futures Thinking through discussing and debating influential reports – for example, by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the OECD, the World Health Organisation, and McKinsey Global Institute. Students will then work collaboratively to assess the potential local impact of these global trends and evaluate local examples of Futures Thinking.