Political Violence in the Post-Cold War Era (POLS 563)

2019 Fall
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Political Science(POLS)
Meltem Ersoy meltemersoy@sabanciuniv.edu,
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Doctoral, Master
Formal lecture,Interactive lecture,Seminar
Communicative,Discussion based learning,Case Study
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This is a course on political violence in contemporary era, as such it mainly deals with global issues like terrorism, civil war, ethnic conflict, and weapons of mass destruction. The objective of the course is first to define these problems, then to explore the causes, and the proposed solutions to them. While doing so, the course touches upon concepts like religion, nationalism, and ethnicity, and examines how these concepts can turn into major driving forces of conflict by studying some of the recent conflicts in different parts of the world. The discussion on possible solutions includes domestic policy alternatives as well as international intervention and the role of international organizations.


The objective of the course is first to define political violence and its various forms, then to explore the causes, and the proposed solutions to them.


At the end of the module students will be able to demonstrate through seminar participation, appropriate performance in the exam and in the written reports the capability to:
a) Define basic concepts in the literature
b) Describe a range of important theories in the study of political violence
c) Differentiate between various types of political violence
c) Identify and evaluate the major issues associated with various conflicts, struggles and instances of political violence around the world. ?
d) Form informed expectations about the dynamics of political violence
e) Identify the social, political, and economic consequences of different types of political violence
e) Formulate appropriate policy responses to political violence
f) Recognize different research methods used in the study of political violence


1. Develop and deepen the current and advanced knowledge in the field with original thought and/or research and come up with innovative definitions based on Master's degree qualifications 5

2. Conceive the interdisciplinary interaction which the field is related with ; come up with original solutions by using knowledge requiring proficiency on analysis, synthesis and assessment of new and complex ideas. 5

3. Evaluate and use new information within the field in a systematic approach. 5

4. Develop an innovative knowledge, method, design and/or practice or adapt an already known knowledge, method, design and/or practice to another field; research, conceive, design, adapt and implement an original subject. 3

5. Critical analysis, synthesis and evaluation of new and complex ideas. 4

6. Gain advanced level skills in the use of research methods in the field of study. 2

7. Contribute the progression in the field by producing an innovative idea, skill, design and/or practice or by adapting an already known idea, skill, design, and/or practice to a different field independently. 4

8. Broaden the borders of the knowledge in the field by producing or interpreting an original work or publishing at least one scientific paper in the field in national and/or international refereed journals. 1

9. Demonstrate leadership in contexts requiring innovative and interdisciplinary problem solving. 1

10. Develop new ideas and methods in the field by using high level mental processes such as creative and critical thinking, problem solving and decision making. 1

11. Investigate and improve social connections and their conducting norms and manage the actions to change them when necessary. 1

12. Defend original views when exchanging ideas in the field with professionals and communicate effectively by showing competence in the field. 1

13. Ability to communicate and discuss orally, in written and visually with peers by using a foreign language at least at a level of European Language Portfolio C1 General Level. 5

14. Contribute to the transition of the community to an information society and its sustainability process by introducing scientific, technological, social or cultural improvements. 1

15. Demonstrate functional interaction by using strategic decision making processes in solving problems encountered in the field. 1

16. Contribute to the solution finding process regarding social, scientific, cultural and ethical problems in the field and support the development of these values. 2

1. Develop the ability to use critical, analytical, and reflective thinking and reasoning 5

2. Reflect on social and ethical responsibilities in his/her professional life. 4

3. Gain experience and confidence in the dissemination of project/research outputs 4

4. Work responsibly and creatively as an individual or as a member or leader of a team and in multidisciplinary environments. 3

5. Communicate effectively by oral, written, graphical and technological means and have competency in English. 4

6. Independently reach and acquire information, and develop appreciation of the need for continuously learning and updating. 4

1. Develop a thorough knowledge of theories, concepts, and research methods in the field and apply them in research design and data analysis. 5

2. Assess the impact of the economic, social, and political environment from a global, national and regional level. 4

3. Know how to access written and visual, primary and secondary sources of information, interpret concepts and data from a variety of sources in developing disciplinary and interdisciplinary analyses. 2

1. Design and model engineering systems and processes and solve engineering problems with an innovative approach.

2. Establish experimental setups, conduct experiments and/or simulations.

3. Analytically acquire and interpret data.

1. Have knowledge of a comprehensive and integrated picture of contemporary Turkey, including all its promise and problems.

2. Have knowledge of an up-to-date grasp of the overall shape and basic outlines of the country?s history; the complexity of the multiple and often contradictory strands of its culture; the fundamental structures and emerging dynamics of its economy; and the basic setting, enduring legacies as well as shifting realignments of its politics.

3. Have a sensitive appreciation of the possible paths and choices it faces early in the 21st century.

4. Able to Respond to the international demand for knowledge about the history, culture, languages, politics and economy of Turkey.

5. Able to Independently formulate critical research questions, and pursue them into a deepening knowledge of the subject.

1. Begin to grasp historical evolution and contemporary character of world politics. 3

1. Analyze current and persistent conflict situations with an emphasis on perceptual and cultural aspects of social conflicts. 5

2. Conduct research in sources of conflicts and possible conflict resolution methods such as negotiation, third-party intervention, cooperative decision making, peace building, track-two and citizens? diplomacy applied to various social contexts. 1

3. Design and implement conflict resolution process to policy issues related to disputes in or among identity groups, governments, organizations, civil society or corporations. 1

4. Develop and sustain arguments in a variety of forms, formulating appropriate questions and utilizing evidence. 5

1. Establish a strong theoretical background in several of a broad range of subjects related to the discipline, such as manufacturing processes, service systems design and operation, production planning and control, modeling and optimization, stochastics, statistics.

2. Develop novel modeling and / or analytical solution strategies for problems in integrated production and service systems involving human capital, materials, information, equipment, and energy, also using an interdisciplinary approach whenever appropriate.

3. Implement solution strategies on a computer platform for decision-support purposes by employing effective computational and experimental tools.

4. Acquire skills to independently explore and tackle problems related to the discipline that were not encountered previously. Develop appropriate modeling, solution, implementation strategies, and assess the quality of the outcome.

1. Be informed about the design and implementation processes of international policies in Turkey and around the world.

2. Understand the historical development and current functioning of international structures and establishments.

3. Comprehend the structures, roles, and functions of international, regional and inter-governmental organizations.

4. Develop an understanding of the process of foreign policy making, along with its bureaucratic structure, actor-structure relationship, and the interaction with domestic political environment and actors; and to acquire the ability to appraise the effects thereof and to bring forth suggestions for improvement.

5. Obtain the scientific background and formation leading to advanced academic study.


  Percentage (%)
Exam 35
Participation 30
Written Report 35



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