Dec 02, 2023  
USC Catalogue 2018-2019 
USC Catalogue 2018-2019 [ARCHIVED CATALOGUE]

International Relations

Return to: USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences  

The School of International Relations (SIR) offers a BA in international relations; a BA in international relations (global business); a BA in international relations and the global economy and a PhD in political science and international relations offered with the Political Science Department. The SIR also offers minors in international relations and international policy and management.

The SIR encourages undergraduate double majors, especially with economics, environmental studies, geography, history, journalism, political science and sociology. Programs are flexible, allowing students to gain a broad background in international studies and, at the same time, to specialize in a particular area.

Von KleinSmid Center 330
(213) 740-6278; 740-2136
FAX: (213) 821-4424


Director: Wayne Sandholtz, PhD.


University Professor and Wallis Annenberg Chair of Communication Technology and Society and Professor of Communication, Sociology, Planning and International Relations: Manuel Castells, PhD (Communication)

Robert R. and Katheryn A. Dockson Chair in Economics and International Relations and Professor of International Relations and Economics: Joshua Aizenman, PhD

John A. McCone Chair in International Relations and Professor of International Relations and Law: Wayne Sandholtz, PhD

Robert Grandford Wright Professor and Professor of International Relations and Middle East Studies: Laurie A. Brand*, PhD

Dean’s Professor of International Relations: Patrick James*, PhD

Professors: Jonathan D. Aronson*, PhD (Communication); David Kang, PhD; Steven L. Lamy*, PhD; Najmedin Meshkati, PhD (Civil and Environmental Engineering); Gerardo Munck, PhD; Michael Parks (Journalism); Brian Rathbun, PhD; Philip Seib, JD (Journalism)

Associate Professors: Robert English, PhD; Jacques Hymans, PhD; Saori N. Katada, PhD; Daniel Lynch, PhD; Carol Wise, PhD

Assistant Professors: Pablo Barbera, PhD; Erin Baggott Carter, PhD; Brett Carter, PhD; Benjamin Graham, PhD; Jonathan Markowitz, PhD; Stephanie Schwartz

Professor of the Practice of International Relations and Economics: Lord John Eatwell, PhD

Professor of the Practice: Gregory Treverton, PhD

Associate Professor of the Practice: Jeffrey R. Fields, PhD

Associate Professor (Teaching): Nina Rathbun, PhD; Pamela K. Starr, PhD

Assistant Professor (Teaching): Douglas Becker, PhD; Iva Bozovic, PhD; Shannon Gibson, PhD

Visiting Assistant Professor: Mehmet Sinan Birdal, PhD

Lecturers: Megan Becker, PhD; Fayez Hammad, PhD

Emeritus Professors: Peter A. Berton*, PhD; Michael G. Fry, PhD; Abraham F. Lowenthal, PhD; John S. Odell, PhD; Ron Steel, MA; Rodger Swearingen, PhD; J. Ann Tickner, PhD

Emeritus Professor of the Practice: Gary W. Glass, PhD

*Recipient of university-wide or college award for teaching or research.



Advisement is required for all majors and minors. Students are encouraged to meet with School of International Relations advisers at least once a semester to review the direction of their individual programs. Students are also encouraged to seek the advisement of faculty members whose specializations are appropriate to their programs of study, and with the School of International Relations’ career adviser.

Academic Specialization

Students majoring in international relations who wish to develop their own specialization or emphasize a particular regional area may establish with a faculty adviser, or with School of International Relations advisers, an academic program that will accomplish the students’ objectives.

Graduate Degrees

The School of International Relations has a PhD in political science and international relations offered with the Political Science Department. 

Admission Requirements

The School of International Relations welcomes talented candidates from a variety of academic backgrounds. Admission decisions are based on consideration of applicants’ prior academic performance, as reflected in course grades and letters of recommendation. Applicants also are strongly encouraged to submit a sample of their written work in English, preferably a research-oriented paper. The committee also considers the potential for success in a graduate program based on Graduate Record Examinations scores. Business, government and other practical experiences related to international relations also are taken into account.

It is strongly recommended that master’s and doctoral degree candidates should have completed at least one undergraduate course in statistics or quantitative methods and at least one course in economics before enrolling for graduate study. A course in social or political theory or international history also is highly desirable. The faculty may admit promising students who lack one or more of these courses. Students with this preparation tend to be more successful in the program and more likely to prosper in an academic or research setting afterwards.

Degree Requirements

These degrees are under the jurisdiction of the Graduate School. Refer to the Requirements for Graduation  section and The Graduate School  section of this catalogue for general regulations. All courses applied toward the degrees must be courses accepted by the Graduate School.

All graduate students are required to maintain regular contact with the graduate coordinator to assure compliance with departmental regulations.

Doctor of Philosophy in Political Science and International Relations

See Political Science and International Relations  for degree requirements.


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