Armenian Politics aims to provide an in-depth understanding of major turning points of Armenian political transition since 1988. It identifies and discusses a set of questions related to the democratic transition, institutional, political, economic, and social developments in the post-Soviet Armenia. Issues of the Soviet heritage as well as questions related to the impact of the Karabakh conflict on the domestic developments of Armenia will be considered too. The course will also discuss topics related to the problems of migration, democratic consolidation, relations with the Armenian Diaspora and a set of closely related topics. The course consists of lectures, discussions and student presentations. Three hours of instructor-led class time per week.

This course addresses a number of security policy related questions, including a) how national security decisions are made; b) strategic planning and implementation of security policies on the executive and legislative levels; c) implications of globalization and human rights on national security related issues; d) interdependence of foreign, defense, intelligence and security policies. The course will also reflect upon Armenia’s experience in national security policy planning and implementation. The course will be taught at 608M. The course is composed of lectures, discussions and presentations. Reading materials will be available both in electronic and hard-copy versions.

The nature and patterns of modern conflicts of international character in XXI century are transforming at a faster pace than the theory can explain. The euphoria of early 1990’s about the ‘end of history’ faded quickly after Rwanda and Srebrenica, or even before that in Sumgayit and Baku. Re-assessed theories and explanations of international conflict and cooperation after the Cold War were not successful in preventing new circles of mass violence, genocide and other crises, understanding their root causes and creating a new security architecture in often-praised interconnected world.

This course provides an understanding of concepts, approaches and methods of policy analysis and ability to apply them. The course consists of three parts. In the first part concepts and theories of public policy analysis are discussed. The general framework for policy analysis is presented. The second part of the course focuses on tools and methods of policy analysis, with a specific focus on one quantitative (regression analysis) and one qualitative (focus groups) method of obtaining and systematizing relevant data. The third part of the course applies theoretical and methodological knowledge discussed in the previous two sections to the Armenian reality.

This course analyses the inter-related concepts of civil society and social capital and explains their prominence in current social science both from a theoretical and an empirical perspective. As a fist building block, the course material includes relevant works of major social theorists, sociologists and political scientists such as Alexis de Tocqueville, James Coleman, Robert Putnam and Francis Fukuyama. The course then makes a transition from theoretical concepts to empirical studies of civil society and social capital and discusses a variety of approaches and main findings in this field. The last part of the course is dedicated to applying the concepts and the approaches to the Armenian reality. The course is envisioned as a seminar with active student participation in class discussions.