You are required to write a 2000-word essay which performs a security review of the case
study above. The essay should follow the structure given in the PDF i will be uploading. Along with the structure the pdf will also contain the case study.
Assessment 3 (Re-sit Period): Briefing Paper (2000 words, worth 40%)
Objective: The purpose of the assessment is to produce a well-researched briefing paper that informs the reader about a) some aspect of global governance, be it a key global issue or the governance apparatus or regime intended to address it, and that b) critically analyses that aspect through the lens of one IR theory.
What is a ‘Briefing Paper’? Briefing papers are very practical documents that are used to bring decision-makers up to speed on a topic new to them in an informative, succinct and, for our purposes, critical way. A briefing paper is a document that informs the reader (e.g., a policy maker) about an event, an issue, a debate, a concept or an institution. It is not a simple description of facts: the paper provides an analysis of the issues at stake, and critically informs the reader of debates and controversies that have arisen surrounding that topic, all with citation to the literature. Crucially, a briefing paper must convey useful information, in a sharp, clear and concise manner (i.e., briefly!). The reader should be able to understand clearly what the topic is about, after even a quick read.
Unlike an essay, you do not necessarily need to build your own argument, but you should strive to cover the multiplicity of factors and issues involved in the debate surrounding the global governance mechanism or issue you have selected in a comprehensive way. However, you will also need to provide a theoretical analysis of the mechanism or issue under study from the perspective of one of the four IR theories in TB2: (classical or neo-) realism, (classical or neo-) liberalism, Marxism or feminism.
Preparing your briefing paper: research. You should plan your research carefully, to make sure that you spend time reading up on a) the global governance issue or mechanism, and the debates surrounding it (e.g., traditional and multidimensional peacekeeping operations), b) the case study in question, if applicable (e.g., DR Congo, and c) the theoretical perspective you mean to apply. Begin by going back to the key readings and key questions we examined during the teaching week in question, and then start vetting supplementary sources on My Reading Lists and Canvas. Use My Reading List to locate sources to provide you with an understanding of the key debates, analyses and critical arguments related to each topic. Make sure that you also plan to review the IR theory you plan to apply to your topic.
NB: even if your topic is very current, the majority of your sources should be from the academic literature. You may also use a limited number of policy documents, reports and data (not just information pulled from their websites) from reputable international organizations and nongovernmental organizations, but in general, your bibliography should be balanced towards academic sources.
How many sources should you have? A minimum of five (5) sources, but more to the point, enough sources from the literature to cover every component of research you need to adequately answer the question.
The paper must be referenced using the Harvard system, including in-text citations and a complete, consistently formatted bibliography. As ever, you should strive to put ideas into your own words (paraphrase) and provide a citation to a source in your bibliography, each and every time you take an idea from another person’s work. Avoid cutting and pasting information from online sources; Turn It In will identify this as an instance of plagiarism.
Structuring your briefing paper. The briefing paper will be of 2000 words (excluding the bibliography), and should include the following sections:
• An executive summary (250 words). An executive summary summarizes the briefing paper’s findings or conclusions – not its topic (i.e., it’s not an introduction). It’s a good idea to review the briefing papers we use in class for examples.
• Table of content with page references to each section of the report
• Introduction to the issue, debate and theory you will apply, and a roadmap to the rest of the briefing paper
• Background, if necessary
• Topical sections (the body of the paper)
You are welcome to use sub-headings to make the organization of the paper clear and easy to follow (again, review the organization of a few briefing papers to get ideas), which should all be referenced in the table of content. The report should include page numbers. You should not aim to include policy recommendations, as this is not the purpose of the assignment. You may use bullet points to cover lists and in the executive summary, but otherwise please keep these to a minimum.
Note that the theoretical analysis does not need to shape the entirety of the briefing paper; there may be a section or so where you discuss the global governance mechanism in question alone. However, in the main, your analysis should address the concerns and apply the concepts associated with your chosen IR perspective.
Briefing Paper Topics & Theories
Choose one of the following topics …
• The changing approach to UN peacekeeping in the post-Cold War era.
• NATO as a changing defence and security institution in the post-Cold War era.
• The call for, and debate surrounding, reform of the UN Security Council.
• Conflict resolution in the context of denuclearization talks with North Korea.
• The achievements and crisis of the project of European integration.
• The capacity of EU and European institutions and immigration/asylum regime to address the migrant crisis since 2015.
• The efforts to address a regional or global crisis or issue of your choice by non-state actors, whether epistemic communities, civil society or transnational social movements ‘from below’.
• The role of gender norms and inequality in the context of human security concerns (e.g., conflict, peacekeeping, poverty and underdevelopment, or migration).
• The Paris Climate Accord or Kyoto Protocol and the challenge of cooperation in the global climate change talks.
• One country’s experience with a World Bank loan (and loan conditionalities) or IMF structural adjustment policies.
• The main sources of tension and debate at the World Trade Organization. You can focus on the Doha Round generally or one WTO agreement.
• The role of one of the new regional powers and ‘strongmen’ on global governance. • The rise of China and its potential impact in the context of global governance.
… plus one theory
• (Classical or neo-) Realism
• (Classical or neo-) Liberalism
NOTE: you are welcome to come up with a topic of interest that it not listed above, and which relates to global governance and international relations; preferably an issue that was addressed at some point in TB2. However, you must vet the topic with me first, and will still be required to participate in a group presentation.
Marking Criteria – What are you being graded on?
These are the general criteria I will look for when grading your work, so it’s a good idea to prepare your essays with them in mind, and use the following list as a checklist as you edit, and before you submit the final product. Remember that I’m available to look at outlines (not drafts) ahead of the due date. Please also remember to review the feedback that you’ve already received on the work submitted so far, and take those comments on board!
• Does the report illustrate an understanding of the global governance topic under study?
• Does the report critically address the main aspects of the debate surrounding this governance mechanism, regime or issue? Critical here does not mean that you have to disagree with everything; rather, it means asking questions of different aspects of a topic, examining its context, and engaging with the debate surrounding it.
• Does the report accurately and critically reflect on the governance mechanism or issue from the perspective of an IR theory? Does it apply the key concepts and key concerns of this perspective to the topic in an effective and appropriate way?
• Is the information in the chapter accurate?
Research & Citation:
• Is the report supported by a diverse series of at least five (5) appropriate sources?
• Have you used what you found in the literature as evidence in support of your arguments, complete with in-text citations?
• Are all of the sources used to create the chapter listed in a bibliography? Are references complete and consistently formatted?
Structure & Organization:
• Does the structure of the report include all the required sections set out in the instructions?
• Does the report remain focused on the topic, case study (where applicable) and theory under discussion?
• Is the report organized in a logical series of sections?
• Does the chapter include an effective introduction, which includes mention of the topic, case study and theory? Is there a roadmap to the report overall?
• Does it end with a conclusion that brings together its main findings?
Writing Style & Presentation:
• Is the report written in a clear and persuasive manner?
• Are its paragraphs organized around a single idea and of appropriate length? Do they begin with a topic sentence, and segue smoothly from one to the next? Is the spacing between paragraphs consistent?
• Has the paper been proofread for punctuation and spelling, and edited for grammar and formatting errors?