Thursday, July 7, 2011

20th annual IIR seminar entitled "History and Philosophy of International Relations"

Participated by 28 graduate students mostly from Greece and spearheaded by two invited scholars Prof. Dr. John Mearsheimer and Prof. Dr. Knud Erik Jørgensen. This summer seminar is annually offered by the Institute of International Relations (IIR) affiliated with the Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences in Athens, Greece. However, it was held in the Island of Tinos from June 30 to July 3.

This photo was taken by Κοινόν Ωρωπίων.

Prof. Mearsheimer opened the discussion by presenting his offensive realism thesis and arguing that his theoretical framework has the best explanatory power. For a detailed information about his thesis, read his book entitled "The Tragedy of Great Power Politics". Prof. Jørgensen discussed his nine perspectives in IR theorizing activity, these are: 1) identifying theories by means of maps (spatial) and decades (temporal), 2) deconstructing the relationship between theory and practice, 3) traditions of IR theories have all centered upon an aspect of "politics", 4) distinguishing thoughts from traditional to complex, 5) deciphering the epistemology, 6) knowing how philosophy can be used as parameter, pointer, reference, and perspective in IR theorizing activity, 7) facing the challenge of hegemony of the US and UK scholars in IR theorizing activity, 8) choosing between monist or eclectic scholarship of IR theories, and 9) what's left for the future IR theorizing activity particularly of the labelled 'periphery', i.e., non-Western (non-American/European) scholars.

Prof. Dr. Harry Papassotiriou oriented us about the ontology of IR as a discipline and Dr. Andreas Gofas gave us a unique lecture of making the relations of philosophy of science and IR historiography by comparing it with football games and terminologies of human afflictions and sensations. We ended the seminar by dividing the participants into four working groups tasked to synthesize and evaluate the whole seminar. My group presented the pathological observation of setting the agenda of the whole seminar. In to-to, it was a mix of learned experience from the shared knowledge of established scholars and enjoyable (networking) event from fellow participants.

 with Prof. Dr. Knud Erik Jørgensen

with Prof. Dr. John Mearsheimer

 with Prof. Dr. Harry Papassotiriou

with Dr. Andreas Gofas

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