CEU-SUN: "Comparative Regionalisms: Changing Forms of Governance in Asia, Africa and the Americas and the Effects on the World Order"

Open to the Public
Nador u. 9, Faculty Tower
Monday, July 2, 2012 - 9:00am
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Monday, July 2, 2012 - 9:00am to Thursday, July 12, 2012 - 6:00pm

Course Directors:

Youngmi Kim, Central European University, Budapest, Hungary

Amitav Acharya, American University, Washington D.C., USA

Matteo Fumagalli, Central European University, Budapest, Hungary


Rick Fawn, University of St Andrews, UK.

Mark Aspinwall, University of Edinburgh, UK

J. Andrew Grant, Queen’s University, Kingston, Canada


The course fosters new approaches to the study of regionalisms in Asia, Africa and the Americas. Building on, but seeking to go beyond the European experience the course examines the rise of regions after World War II and the resurgence of the idea in and from the 1980s. It considers the different interpretations, values and expectations assigned to ‘region’, from regional free trade agreements to security communities to supra-national integrative projects. The course will examine how such regions vary across time and geography, assuming different characteristics, and will also consider to what extent regions are a result of and/or a response to globalization and the extent to which they constitute and shape global order.

The aim of the course is three-fold: to introduce varieties of new regionalisms in Asia, Africa and the Americas; critically engage extant theories of regionalism and discuss the extent to which western theories and models can be applied to other types of regionalism; examine questions of inter-regional relations and regional change.

The course will pay special attention to the origins, the specific features, and the changing characters of the various regions, and their effects on world order. Among the key questions discussed in the course are the following: when is a region a region?; how and when do regions rise to international prominence?; how do different regions interact with each other (if at all)?; how do regions and types of regionalism change?

These questions are not purely academic: understanding why regions form, organize and institutionalize can shed light on the process of change such regions undergo, but also contributes to understanding processes of interregional relations, so far left at the margins of academic debates. Ultimately they speak to one of the key questions in the study of international relations, namely that of war and peace.

The course also pays special attention to methodological issues arising from inter-regional comparisons, as well as to the extent to which western theories, largely designed to account for the process of European integration, can also explain non-western varieties of regionalism.

The course encourages applications from academics and professionals in the social sciences, and especially from the fields of international relations, international political economy, comparative politics, and sociology. Some familiarity with the regions discussed in the course would be an advantage.

Central European University's summer school (CEU SUN), established in 1996, is a program in English for graduate students, junior or post-doctoral researchers, teachers and professionals. It offers high-level, research-oriented, interdisciplinary academic courses as well as workshops on policy issues for professional development, taught by internationally renowned scholars and policy experts (including CEU faculty). Application from all over the world is encouraged. Financial aid is available.

Application deadline: February 15, 2012

Online application

For academic information please visit the course website