REF sub-panel update from Professor Charlie Jeffrey

The Politics and International Studies REF Sub-Panel has just met for the second time, so it is a good moment for an update. 
 
A first point to note is that Kristian Gleditsch of the University of Essex has joined the Sub-Panel in the current criteria-setting phase. One of the people on the original list of nominees to the Sub-Panel was unable to take up their place, leaving an important gap in the field of quantitative political science. I am delighted that Kristian has been able to join us to fill this gap. 
 
Second, the main task of the Sub-Panel so far has been to advise on the overarching Guidance on Submissions document and (in particular) Main Panel C’s Panel Criteria and Working Methods document. These in part reproduce guidance from the last REF, but are also being updated to clarify certain issues, but also to respond to the changes introduced after the Stern Report. I suspect the product will be a long and quite intricate set of documentation. 
 
This will make – third – the consultation process on these documents especially important. Many of the issues - for example, who can be or must be submitted - will largely be questions of institutional policy. Others – for example, double-weighting of outputs, or continuing impact case studies which extend from cases submitted last time – will bear heavily on decisions at unit of assessment level. 
 
So please do consider the documents carefully when they are made available (I anticipate in the second half of July) and make sure your views are heard in your institutions’ responses. The consultation period is set to extend to early/mid- (I hope mid-) October, so there will be plenty of time for reflection. 
 
With that in mind, a date for your diary: I and other members of the Sub-Panel will be hosting a briefing on the draft REF documents (but also on the emerging understanding of how we are likely to interpret them in our working practice) on the early afternoon of 19 September, with the kind support of PSA and BISA. We hope this will be a useful occasion for Heads of Department and departmental REF Coordinators to discuss the draft documents, to help them influence their institutional consultation responses, and to shape their unit of assessment plans as they firm up in the run-up to the census date in 2020. 
 

Call for Papers - Deadline Extended - 13th BISA US Foreign Policy Working Group Annual Conference

Call for Papers *FINAL deadline extension Friday June 20* 

4-5 September 2018
Liverpool John Moores University, UK

The 13th annual conference of the British International Studies Association (BISA) US Foreign Policy Working Group will take place at Liverpool John Moores University on 4 and 5 September 2018. We invite proposals of individual papers or panels on any aspect of US foreign policy, contemporary or historical. We also welcome proposals from a range of scholarly perspectives, including International Relations; Political Science; History; Economics; and other related disciplines.

Possible topics for papers and panels might include US foreign policy as it relates to: race; gender; human rights; regional/global power shifts; terrorism and counterterrorism; cyberwarfare/security; energy security; nuclear weapons; trade and finance; multilateral organisations and institutions, and any other relevant arena. More focused papers might include Trump’s foreign-policy initiatives, as well as the future of US grand strategy. We are also supportive of panels that incorporate outside perspectives such as Chinese, Russian, Iranian or European reflections on US foreign policy.

There are two themes at this conference that will be addressed in the roundtables. We will examine US national security and the institutions that deliver it, and explore how the world views US foreign policy and its engagement with the world.

The Keynote address on national security this year will be by David Rothkopf. He is the former CEO and editor of Foreign Policy magazine, professor of international relations, and a visiting scholar at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. He is the author of a number of books on US Foreign Policy, including National Insecurity: American Leadership in an Age of Fear (2014).

Other confirmed speakers include Chief Diplomatic Correspondent Steven Erlanger New York Times, Dr. Leslie Vinjamuri SOAS and Chatham House (US and International Security expert). Ruth Deyermond Kings College London (Russian expert), Dr. Xin (Calvin) Liu Liverpool John Moores University (China expert), Dr. Adam Quinn University of Birmingham (USFP expert), Dr. Maria Ryan University of Nottingham (USFP expert), and Dr Dimitrios Anagnostakis Liverpool Hope University (EU-US relations expert).

We are keen for papers to reflect the diversity of US foreign policy by encouraging papers from women and BAME delegates. To support this issue of diversity we will provide some funding to those panels that expand our base and focus. Please email explaining how you fulfil these criteria. We also have a limited number of bursaries available for strong proposals from Early Career Researchers. ECRs considered for funding will be determined by being either a doctoral candidate or having a fixed term teaching post, postdoc etc. To provide confirmation please submit a CV with the necessary details. Because the funding for ECRs is coming from BISA you must be a member. Membership details can be found here. ECRs with a full-time permanent position will not be considered.

We will also have a conference dinner which all delegates can attend for an extra fee, paid at the point of conference registration.

Paper and panel proposals (300 word abstract) should be submitted to the Working Group convenor, Dr Matthew Alan Hill (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) by the extended deadline of Friday June 20th, 2018.

A link to this call for papers can be found on the working group’s website: https://www.us- foreign-policy.com/call-for-papers. You can also follow us on Twitter: @USFPgroup; and join our Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/USFPWG/ 

 

BISA Working Group on Intervention and R2P Annual Workshop

BISA Working Group on Intervention and The Responsibility to Protect
Annual Workshop
 
CALL FOR PAPERS
 
European Centre for the Responsibility to Protect
University of Leeds
Friday 21 September 2018
 
 
 
The BISA Working Group on Intervention and The Responsibiltiy to Protect will be holding its first annual one-day workshop and would welcome papers on intervention and the R2P.
 
Please send abstracts of 250 words and a 100-word bio to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by 15 July 2018.
 
This year the general theme will be ‘alternatives to military intervention under R2P’. The choice of topic is because much of the R2P literature to date has focused on the military (and often contentious) aspects of R2P. At this event, papers will explore the case for non-military ways of addressing mass atrocities, under the second and third pillars of R2P. This will include both the ‘reactive’ measures of R2P, as well as some of the ‘preventive’ ones, specifically those concerned with ‘direct’ or ‘imminent’ prevention. There is potential to create a special issue as an output from the workshop.
 
There will also be some general sessions, for those members who are working on other topics related to intervention and R2P.
 
Possible topics include:
 
• UN sanctions
• Peace vs justice
• The UN’s relationship with the International Criminal Court
• Regional organisations and R2P
• UN Security Council practices in responding to mass atrocity crimes
• Legitimacy and the implementation of R2P
• Unarmed civilian peacekeeping
• Any other topics connected to R2P and intervention
 
Attendance and participation is not limited to members of BISA or the working group.
 
Lunch will be provided on the day.
 
The winners of the annual book and ECR article awards will also be announced.
 
The IR2P Working Group will also award two annual prizes for excellent research on intervention and R2P. There is a prize for the best book (monograph or edited collection) and a prize for the best article by an ECR (current PhD student or within two years of PhD submission). Self-nominations are welcome. For the full details and regulations click here.
 
 

Calls for Expressions of Interests to Host BISA 2020

The Executive of the British International Studies Association is seeking statements of interest for serving as the Host for the annual BISA conference in June of 2020. The BISA conference draws an international group of researchers and practitioners who are dedicated to the free exchange of scholarly opinions and evidence based research for the purposes of advancing the field of international  studies.
 
We seek expressions of interest from groups, departments, schools, and/or organisations to serve as Host for the BISA 2020 conference. The Conference Host is a group or organisation who serves as a liaison to BISA, assisting in the identification of conference spaces, hotels, catering and reception options, sponsorships, and ways to engage with the local community in order to raise the visibility of BISA and the field of international studies.
 
BISA will manage the conference programme. Dedicated BISA staff will also lead much of the conference planning, including negotiating contracts with hotels, meeting venues, catering, and handling the administrative details of the conference, including registration, reception(s), A/V and wifi, and book vendor displays. The role of the Conference Host is to advise on this process and provide crucial local knowledge and connections.
 
Individuals, organisations, or consortia who may be interested in serving as Conference Host should contact BISA President Professor Richard Whitman (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) with a letter outlining an expression of interest. The letter should include the following information:
 
-a list of the members of your hosting group;
-your connections to BISA and the field of international studies;
-a description of any prior experiences you have had with hosting conferences and the role(s) members of the hosting group have played;
-initial thoughts on venue options that could accommodate up to 700 delegates and 175 panels over 3-4 days and why these would be good spaces for holding the conference. [Please note BISA is open to a variety of venue spaces, including universities, conference centres, and hotels];
-initial thoughts for a programme of events around the conference that will engage with the local community to raise the visibility of BISA and advance the understanding of international studies;
-an assessment of the potential for additional institutional support (if available)
 
The deadline to submit expressions of interest is 30 August, 2018 by 5pm UK time to Professor Richard Whitman (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).
 

Call for Papers for a Workshop: Governing Transit Migration: Varieties of Approaches in International Politics

Date: 17 September 2018
Location: University of Warwick, United Kingdom
Organised by Dr. Maria Koinova and Dr. Gerasimos Tsourapas
 
BISA Working Group on the “International Politics of Migration, Refugees and Diasporas”
 
Migration has emerged as one of the major challenges of our time, from the Syrian refugee crisis to the sub-Saharan refugees seeking to reach European shores via the Mediterranean to the mobilisation of the Turkish diaspora across Europe for the 2017 constitutional referendum, and the debates on immigration reforms in Europe and the United States. While researchers and policy-makers have examined both emigration and immigration, transit migration remains underexplored in migration studies, even more so from the perspectives of International Relations and Political Studies. 
 
This workshop seeks to bring this conversation to the attention of BISA members and other scholars worldwide who would like to join this workshop. We seek to attract a range of researchers working on transit migration and its connection to sending and destination states and international organizations, and would welcome abstracts from doctoral students, early-career scholars and senior academics. 
The workshop seeks to structure the discussion along two main axes: firstly, we are interested in institutional politics. What types of institutional responses do sending, transit and receiving states issue to regulate transit migration? How do international organisations, non-governmental organisations and think-tanks respond to the phenomenon of transit? How could we explain such responses, and how could we assess them about their adequateness and shortcomings? Secondly, we are interested in the migrants and refugees and their experiences with transit. How do migrants and refugees engage with existing institutions and societal structures during their migration journeys? How do they respond to various institutional obstacles preventing migration, and what kind of coping strategies do they develop? How do they mobilize during and in the aftermath of their transit migration?
 
This one-day workshop aims to address these questions, within the broader perspective of migration governance. It will take place on 17 September 2018 at the University of Warwick. We welcome applications from junior and senior scholars in international politics, as well as those with particular regional expertise in the Middle East, Eurasia, sub-Saharan Africa, and Latin America.
 
If you are interested to participate, please send a paper abstract of 300 words maximum to Dr. Gerasimos Tsourapas (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) and Dr. Maria Koinova (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) by 10 June 2018.
 
The organisers will decide about accepted abstracts by 15 June 2018. The organisers may consider the submission of select papers as a special issue in an ISI-ranked journal. Limited financial support will be available for BISA members. We welcome new BISA members at https://www.bisa.ac.uk/index.php/membership
 

Call for papers: Feminist International Relations and the ‘Science Question’: Positivism, Post-positivism, and Beyond. One Day Workshop

One-day workshop (20th October, 2018) at the London School of Economics and Political Science. 
 
KEYNOTE: Alison Assiter (Professor of Feminist Theory, University of the West of England)
 
The ascent of feminist approaches since the mid-1980s has resulted in a significant challenge to the character of the International Relations (IR) discipline. Arising out of the work of countless generations of feminist activists and campaigners, the force and vitality of these approaches became apparent especially during the third ‘Great Debate’ of IR. The debate, that is, between positivist and post-positivist approaches. By siding largely with the latter of these two camps, feminist IR scholars were able to challenge the very foundations of mainstream (‘malestream’) approaches to IR. As opposed to positivism, characterised above all in terms of its ‘masculinist’/ ‘androcentric’ emphasis on science, feminist scholars systematically argued that the methods and epistemological perspectives which they favour (1) facilitated greater recognition of the ubiquitous analytical significance of sex/gender, and (2) provided a superior basis for explicitly normative concerns like dismantling sex/gender-based hierarchies and forms of discrimination.
 
By challenging the androcentrism/masculinism of positivist philosophy in these ways post-positivist feminist scholars have significantly enriched numerous discussions within IR. Indeed, the analytical and normative contributions of these scholars have spilled over beyond the ‘ivory tower’ as well, resulting in meaningful contributions to the thinking and conduct of myriad non-profit/governmental organisations, activist groups, think-tanks, and formal political institutions.
 
By adopting a post-positivist strategy, however, feminist IR scholars have also tended to trade on a conflation of science with its theorisation by positivist thought. For instance, these scholars have commonly assumed that emblematic scientific practices (e.g. experimentation) are adequately theorised by positivism. More generally, they have largely failed to engage with alternative understandings of science, such as those that are provided by anti-positivist approaches like pragmatism, critical realism, and the new materialisms. Importantly, this state of affairs fails to do justice to the work of feminist scholars outside of IR. While some of these scholars have certainly subscribed to positions that are hostile/sceptical towards science – thereby adopting a viewpoint that was already apparent in Virginia Woolf’s famous claim that ‘science […] is not sexless’ but ‘a man, a father and infected too’ – other feminists have expressed significant enthusiasm with regard to its achievements and emancipatory potential.
 
This workshop therefore aims to (1) bring together scholars with an interest and expertise in the philosophy of (social) science and/or feminist IR, (2) explore the present-day relationship between (social) science and feminist IR, (3) reflect on the future of this relationship, and (4) stimulate the creation of a research community that explores this relationship.
Specifically, this call for papers invites abstract submissions that explore such questions as:
 
  • Is positivist IR androcentric/masculinist or have feminist IR scholars portrayed its philosophical and methodological orientation in inaccurate/misleading ways?
  • Is science only superficially or inadvertently androcentric/masculinist or does it inescapably silence and delegitimise feminist forms of knowing/knowledge-production?
  • How should feminist IR scholars relate to the knowledge-claims of natural scientists?
  • Should (evolutionary) biology play any role in our understandings of sex/gender-dynamics?
  • Is the philosophical orientation that has been adopted by feminist IR scholars genuinely post-positivist or does it inadvertently reproduce (or invert) a number of positivist positions?
  • Does the adoption of a feminist orientation towards IR mean that we should abandon rationality, rigour, neutrality, objectivity, etc. wholesale, just because these notions are conventionally associated with positivist philosophy of (social) science? Or is this akin to throwing out the proverbial baby with the bathwater?
  • Are the methodological and epistemological stances that are favoured by feminist scholars exclusively feminist or are they simply more suitable for their particular purposes (i.e. do they have broader applications as well)?
  • Do efforts to re-theorise/reclaim science by pragmatist, critical realist, new materialist, and other anti-positivist approaches hold any promise for grounding future forms of feminist IR?
  • Can broader feminist theorisations of science improve/re-vitalise discussions within feminist IR? What intellectual resources do these theorisations provide?
  • To what extent are positivist and post-/anti-positivist philosophical approaches capable of providing a basis for the normative aims of feminism? What kind of politics do these philosophical approaches suggest/imply?
  • Is feminism/feminist IR a political project, a scientific project, or neither/both?
 
Potential contributors should submit a 250-word abstract to iThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by the 30th of June, 2018. Notifications of acceptance/rejection will be sent out by the 14th of July. This workshop is sponsored by the ‘International Relations as a Social Science’ (IRSS) Working Group of the British International Studies Association (BISA). Travel costs may therefore be covered. Priority in this regard will be given to graduate students and early career researchers. Please specify whether or not you are applying for funding when submitting your abstract.
 
Workshop organiser: 
 
Dr Michiel van Ingen is a Guest Teacher at the London School of Economics and Political Sciences (LSE). His research draws on, and sits at the intersection of, a range of disciplines, including International Relations, conflict studies, the philosophy/methodology of science, (critical/global) political economy, development studies, and anthropology. The three main thematic areas with which his publications have engaged thus far are (1) violence (the study of civil war in particular), (2) the philosophy/methodology of science (critical realism and the new materialisms in particular), and (3) feminism and gender-studies.
 
Contact information: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 

BISA Is Looking to Recruit A New Chief Executive

BISA Is Looking to Recruit A New Chief Executive

Location: London

Salary: £49,149 - £56,950

37.5 Hours per week

 

We are looking for a dynamic, creative and forward-thinking Chief Executive to steer one of Britain's leading political societies.

The British International Studies Association (BISA) is a learned society which develops and promotes the study of International Studies, Politics and related subjects through teaching, research and networking.  Founded in 1975, BISA is the leading organisation for researchers, policy makers, practitioners and students of International Studies in the United Kingdom. 

The association has over 1300 members. While most are based in the UK there are also members throughout Europe, North and  South America, Africa, Asia and Australia. New members are always welcome. 

We have an exciting opportunity for an ambitious and inspirational chief executive to lead the organisation at a time of change and opportunity. BISA has an ambitious new strategic plan and is in the process of transforming its management and operational functions.  We are looking for a forward-thinking leader who will help shape our strategic and operational direction and so  drive the organisation forward into its  next phase of development.

The successful individual will have experience of working strategically in a leadership role with evidence of an entrepreneurial mind-set and a positive ‘can do’ attitude to work. The ideal candidate will have a strong interest in academia, particularly in the fields of International Studies and Politics.

The key responsibilities for the role are:

·              To provide strategic leadership for BISA, working with Trustees to set, monitor and review the organisation’s strategic goals

·              To act as the public face and manage the reputation of BISA, ensuring the organisation is visible and highly regarded

 

If you believe that you have what we are looking for, we would love to hear from you. To apply, please submit a CV and covering letter (no longer than three pages) detailing how your skills and experience match the job description and person specification available here. The closing date is midnight on Thursday 7th June 2018. Applications to be submitted via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Interviews will be held in central London on the 21st and 22nd June 2018.

 

European Journal of International Security: Call for Editors

The British International Studies Association (BISA) invites applications for the position of Editor of the European Journal of International Security (EJIS) from January 2020.

EJIS, published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of BISA, seeks to publish the best research across the range of sub-fields in security studies. The new editor and his/her team will succeed Professor Tim Edmunds and his team, whose editorial term will end on December 31st 2019.  The incoming Editor will serve a four-year term from 1st January 2020 through to 31st December 2023, with the opportunity to shadow the outgoing team during the course of 2019. 

It is expected that applications will be from lead editor(s) and an associated team, and will identify an institutional base and support. Applicants must be BISA members. It is recommended that at least one member of the editorial team be based in the United States. We also welcome applications from teams that include an associated editor based in the Global South.

The new lead Editor will have complete editorial responsibility for journal content, and for sustaining and building on the growing reputation of EJIS as a preeminent refereed journal in its field. He or she can expect to receive a considerable number of new manuscript submissions per year and should ensure that publication decisions are made in a reasonable and timely manner.

Applications must be sent by email to Richard Whitman [This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.] copied to Mark Webber [This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.] by the 31st October 2018. Two members of each of the short listed teams will be invited to interview in early December (likely to be December 6th) at a venue in central Birmingham. Applications will be considered by a committee comprising:

 

  • Professor Richard Whitman, BISA Chair
  • Professor Mark Webber, BISA Vice Chair
  • Professor Tim Edmunds, outgoing Editor, European Journal of International Security
  • Professor Ruth Blakeley, Editor, Review of International Studies  
  • One further member of the BISA Executive

A decision is expected by 31st January 2019 so that successful candidates have time to prepare for the transition. 

Applications must include material under the following headings:

  • The Team. Lead Editor and Editorial team; description of editorial experience and experience of working together as a team, as appropriate. Description of proposed editorial style.
  • The Vision. Describe goals for the journal, ideas for innovations or changes (if any).
  • Implementation. Description of institutional and resource support.
  • Budget. There is financial support from Cambridge University Press that can be discussed as below prior to completion of this element; but support from the home institution is also expected.

The total document should comprise no more than five pages (word or PDF format).

Enquiries about the position should be made to Professor Whitman [This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.]

 

Review of International Studies: Call for Editors

The British International Studies Association (BISA) invites Applications for the position of Editor of the Review of International Studies as from January 2020.

 The Review, published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of BISA, seeks to publish the best research across the range of sub-fields in international studies. The new Editor and his/her team will succeed Professor Ruth Blakeley and her team, whose editorial term will end on December 31st 2019.  The incoming Editor will serve a four-year term from 1st January 2020 through to 31st December 2023, with the opportunity to shadow the outgoing team during the course of 2019. 

It is expected that applications will be from lead editors and an associated team, and will identify an institutional base and support. Applicants must be BISA members. It is recommended that at least one member of the editorial team be based in the United States. We also welcome applications from teams that include an associated editor based in the Global South. 

The new lead Editor will have complete editorial responsibility for the content of the Review, and for sustaining and building on its status as one of the preeminent refereed journals within the international studies community. He or she can expect to receive a significant number of new manuscript submissions per year and should ensure that publication decisions are made in a reasonable and timely manner.

Applications must be sent by email to Richard Whitman [This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.] copied to Mark Webber [This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.] by the 31st October 2018. Two members of each of the short listed teams will be invited to interview in early December (likely to be December 6th) at a venue in central Birmingham. Applications will be considered by a committee comprising:

  • Professor Richard Whitman, BISA Chair
  • Professor Mark Webber, BISA Vice Chair
  • Professor Ruth Blakeley, outgoing Editor, Review of International Studies  
  • Professor Tim Edmunds, Editor, European Journal of International Security
  • One further member of the BISA Executive

A decision is expected by 31st January 2019 so that successful candidates have time to prepare for the transition. 

Applications must include material under the following headings:

  • The Team. Lead Editor and Editorial team; description of editorial experience and experience of working together as a team, as appropriate. Description of proposed editorial style.
  • The Vision. Describe goals for the journal, ideas for innovations or changes (if any).
  • Implementation. Description of institutional and resource support.
  • Budget. There is financial support from Cambridge University Press that can be discussed as below prior to completion of this element; but support from the home institution is also expected.

The total document should comprise no more than five pages (word or PDF format).

Enquiries about the position should be made to Professor Whitman [This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.]

 

Message to BISA and PSA Members from Professor Charlie Jeffery, Political and International Studies REF Sub-Panel

I’m really pleased that the initial membership of the Politics and International Studies (and all the other) sub-panels for the next REF has now been published. I realise it has taken quite a while to get from when nominations were made to this point. I’m grateful to PSA, BISA and the other organisations that nominated potential members – and for their patience since.  
The process of setting up sub-panels this time has been different, with the sub-panel being put together in two phases. An initial group will meet this year in the first, criteria-setting phase to consider, recommend and put out to consultation any nuances to the general REF criteria it thinks the sub-panel might need. This group will be joined in 2020-2021 by additional panel members for the assessment phase. Some of the assessment phase members have been identified now, and others will be in 2020 to ensure full coverage across the discipline – including in areas not fully covered by the initial round of nominations – and to bring in full user expertise. 
 
My approach has been to bring together as big a group of criteria phase members and to identify as many assessment phase members as HEFCE would accept, so as to establish as inclusive a sub-panel as possible from the outset. A number of those selected for both the criteria-setting and assessment phases have not yet responded, so more names should be added to the list shortly. My intention is to have a sub-panel for both phases which gives a wide subject coverage across politics and international studies, draws in members spread across the UK with no more than one from any single department, includes a good mix of past and new sub-panel members, is fully gender-balanced, and includes people from different ethnic backgrounds.
 
Those different dimensions of inclusion are important. The stakes in the REF process are high, both for what its outcomes say about the relative strength of the discipline as a whole, and for the standing of departments in their institutions. It is vital that the sub-panel has a membership which can engage across the discipline with credibility and authority. The sub-panel also needs to be as open as possible as early as possible about how it will go about its work, not least in the consultation on criteria that will take place this autumn. That means you should see quite a bit of me and other sub-panel members in the coming months. I’m looking forward to it!
 
- Professor Charlie Jeffery
 
British International Studies Association
 
Email: office@bisa.ac.uk
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