Features of Curriculum

The Division of International Peace Studies


The School of International Peace Studies conducts research and education regarding various types of dispute and social conflict among nations and among non-state entities, which have been covered as subjects by the conventional International Relations and Peace Studies areas. In the School’s curriculum, English is to be used as its official language, and small-group education will be conducted, placing emphasis on the development of the ability to formulate and present policies at each student’s level. Through the educational process, the “School of International Peace Studies” will aim to develop students’ viewpoints of Global Citizenship that permit both tolerant attitudes toward diverse values and their own sense of value to be established.

Field / Contents of Research and Education

The “School of International Peace Studies” will have two core courses, “International Relations Theory” and “Peace and Global Citizenship,” with four credits each. It will develop human resources skilled in analyzing problems in today’s international community, where globalization is progressing rapidly, in a social scientific manner from the viewpoint of offering sound values necessary to society. One of the core courses, “International Relations Theory,” will focus on nations as a fundamental unit constituting the global community. Graduate students taking this course will learn theories of international relations, covering causes of conflict between nations and mechanisms of coordinating interests as major themes of research. In the “Peace and Global Citizenship” course, meanwhile, graduate students will learn theories of peace studies that cover conflicts, confrontations and disputes in society, including non-state entities, as themes of analyses. Irrespective of state or non-state actors in conflict, the situation called peace, which can be achieved by resolving such conflict, is an ambiguous concept, and there are the history and reality that its definition itself has brought about conflict between different cultures and values. On the other hand, it is indispensable to have some sort of common viewpoint in social and organizational aspects in order to control the positive and negative impacts that are caused to society by the globalization of highly specialized and subdivided technologies. The “Peace and Global Citizenship” course seeks to find a common viewpoint toward the resolution of such challenges full of dilemmas in the concept of Global Citizenship. It will thus nurture, by allowing students to learn theories of peace studies, human resources who can find out common ground of values through open communication with others. As compulsory elective courses, the “School of International Peace Studies” will have major courses in place that have been instituted in both “International Relations Theory” and “Peace Studies” fields. By taking compulsory elective courses in both fields, students will acquire high levels of academic wisdom regarding causes of confrontation and conflict arising among various actors due to globalization, and regarding viewpoints and specific methods of solution to them. Elective courses in the “International Relations Theory” area will be a group of courses that analyze international conflict from the viewpoints of diplomatic relations, global governance, international political and economic systems, and development of less advanced countries. Students who take these courses will obtain academic wisdom concerning the history, institutions and technologies that are related to causes of and solutions to international conflict, and acquire expertise enabling them to engage in highly skilled professions associated with the resolution of conflict and post-conflict reconstruction extensively, at international organizations, administrative agencies or nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). Elective courses in the “Peace Studies” area will be a range of programs covering themes such as conflict resolutions, human security, and human rights and gender, from the standpoint of focusing on various social conflicts and confrontations between non-state entities. Through these courses, students will obtain academic wisdom regarding the evolution of thoughts and institutions related to the resolution of social conflict extensively, thus earning skills to formulate practicable specific policies and measures at companies, administrative departments and NGOs at home and abroad to address social problems arising from various conflicts of interest.

Methods of Education

The academic fields covered by the University’s “School of International Peace Studies” as an organization include a broad range of social challenges that have been targeted as subjects of research by the International Relations Theory and Peace Studies. What is characteristic of the School is that it seeks to foster human resources who will go beyond the conventional method of dividing the level of analysis of these challenges into those among nations and those among non-state entities, and who will have a fresh look at causes of and solutions to social conflict and confrontation arising in the global community from the viewpoint of both state and non-state actors, and consequently, have a comprehensive and creative perspective (Global Citizenship) toward the resolution of such challenges. Therefore, besides learning fundamental and systematic theories in the International Relations Theory and Peace Studies areas by completing core and compulsory elective course groups, students are required to publish academic articles written while taking core course groups (two credits each) -- “Seminar I (Research Design)” (the second semester of the first year), “Seminar II (Research Conduct)” (the first semester of the second year) and “Seminar III (Master’s Thesis)” (the second semester of the second year) --, present creative policies and measures regarding specific social problems faced by the global community from the viewpoint of Global Citizenship, and then pass an examination based on standards and procedures laid down by the School in order to finish the master’s course. Students who get interested in more advanced theoretic studies in each field through the process of writing academic papers and desire to proceed to a course of fostering researchers will be instructed to advance to the latter period of a doctor’s program at other postgraduate humanities schools of the University or similar programs at other universities in and outside Japan.