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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Joel S Migdal
SIS 495
Seattle Campus

Task Force

Small-group seminars address current problems in international affairs, each focusing on one specific policy question and producing a joint task force report. Restricted to senior majors in International Studies. Prerequisite: SIS 200; SIS 201; SIS 202; SIS 401.

Class description

U.S. Policy on Nation-Building & Creation of Civil Society in Other Countries During the 2000 US elections, candidate George Bush took strong exception to US foreign policy, which was deeply mired, he claimed, in the process of nation-building around the world. Since 9/11, however, President Bush led a foreign policy geared towards just such nation-building. The US has been engaged in "exporting freedom," supporting the growth of civil society (especially through the funding of non-governmental organizations--NGOs), and promoting democracy. This policy has garnered much criticism, mostly directed at the flailing US efforts in Iraq following the invasion of that country. This Task Force will have students breakdown the question of nation-building to analyze the feasibility and advisability of such goals for the United States. Students will work together to write a simulated government report recommending to the secretary of state of the post-election administration how to proceed on the question of nation-building efforts abroad. The class will organize itself to serve as a Task Force, breaking down into smaller collaborative groups, working on specific dimensions of the problem. The instructor will be an adviser, resource, and facilitator, and the class will be largely self-led, especially after the third week.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by M Jane Meyerding
Date: 10/25/2004