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IR 210, International Relations: Introductory Analysis: Question #4

This course guide provides guidance on how to complete Analytical Exercise #1 in Dr. Lamy's IR 210 class.

Question 4:

Find six research institutes or think tanks that focus on global challenges like protecting human rights or promoting free trade. Two of these should be housed in Europe, two in North America, and two in Asia. Provide a brief description of each and provide their web address.

Intended Learning Outcomes

An important area of scholarship about issues and events in international relations is published in reports from university-based institutes, privately funded research centers ["think tanks"], and special interest organizations. Often, these are non-profit organizations that support research intended to influence public policy or to advocate for change in regards to a particular issue. Some organizations are non-partisan while others support a specific political agenda or advocate for a particular cause [e.g., climate change]. It is important that you know how to locate research reports [sometimes called "working papers"] produced by these types of organizations and to understand their differing purposes.

Research Approach

The International Relations Research Guide includes a tab for selected research organizations arranged by region. In addition, the following online directories and databases can be used to locate research organizations by subject:

Gale Research Directory -- provides access to a variety of directories, most notably the Research Centers Directory. To search, click on the advanced search option and highlight Research Centers Directory then enter a topic [i.e., climate change] to show centers committed to that area of research.

Think Tank Search -- produced by the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, this search engine searches the websites of more than 690 institutions affiliated with universities, governments, advocacy groups, foundations, non-governmental organizations, and businesses that generate public policy research, analysis, and activity.


HINT:  Dr. Lamy can see the organizations listed in the International Relations Research Guide. Be innovative and use the databases listed above to search for research centers and think tanks that aren't listed. There are thousands to choose from throughout the world.