IR Theory and Practice – With Robert Murray

IR Theory and Practice brings together a group of scholars to provide timely, expert and tangible insights on some of the most pivotal issues facing the world today. The blog is curated by Dr Robert W. Murray.

The Iran-Iraq War: The Use of Religion as a Tool

The Iran-Iraq War: The Use of Religion as a Tool

Throughout history religion has effectively served as an instrument or even a weapon of war. This strategy was also used during the Iran-Iraq war

Global Ambition and National Differentiation in the Paris Agreement and the SDGs

Global Ambition and National Differentiation in the Paris Agreement and the SDGs

The apparent success in reaching the Paris Agreement as well as the UN sustainable development goals should be treated with caution

UK-China Relations: A New Model of Influence?

UK-China Relations: A New Model of Influence?

It will be some time before the effects of the UK’s recent investment engagement strategy towards China become clear; if it pays off it may be a new template of influence

Iran Is Part of the Problem, Part of the Solution

Iran Is Part of the Problem, Part of the Solution

Geostrategic reality, shrewd political moves and the short-sighted policies of its adversaries have enhanced the role of Iran in any future dispensation in Syria.

After Paris: What Should (Not) Be Done?

After Paris: What Should (Not) Be Done?

In the wake of the Paris events, thinking more carefully about the contexts of these terror attacks is a useful start to normalising responses to terrorism.

Testing the Waters in the South China Sea

Testing the Waters in the South China Sea

Reactions to US operations in the South China Sea demonstrate that China and the United States seem to have established a working protocol for issues they disagree on

India’s Complex Security Environment & the Need for International Partnerships

India’s Complex Security Environment & the Need for International Partnerships

India needs to develop and implement effective strategies and tactics that address its diverse security environment in a multi-pronged and multi-layered manner.

The West Needs a Strategic Pause before Working with Russia

The West Needs a Strategic Pause before Working with Russia

There are a number of reasons why empowering Russia in the Middle East is a dangerous idea, and should create serious pause for Western states

The South China Seas: a Manageable Dispute

The South China Seas: a Manageable Dispute

Reaching a pragmatic solution to the problem of the contested territories of the South China Sea requires complex diplomatic efforts on the side of all parties involved.

Democratic Peace Theory: Is the Patient Terminally Ill or Recuperable?

Democratic Peace Theory: Is the Patient Terminally Ill or Recuperable?

Although DPT in its current form is a dubious conceptual tool, a promising way to ‘repair’ the theory is to find points of convergence with competing explanations

China and the ‘Thucydides Trap’

China and the ‘Thucydides Trap’

China’s rise may be bringing an end to the Gramscian notion of western hegemony and thereby creating a new kind of balance of power.

Sectarian Divisions, Proxy Wars and Chaos

Sectarian Divisions, Proxy Wars and Chaos

It is important to have a firm grasp of the role that religion and sectarianism play as mobilizing forces in the regional politics of the Middle East.