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Approaches of Study of International Relations

Classical or Conventional Approaches


Traditional Approaches 1.Historical Approach 2.Current Event Approach 3.Institutional, Legal and Normal Approach Philosophical Approaches 1.Realistic Approach 2.Idalistic Approach

Methods or Approaches of International Relations


II. Scientific or Behavioral Approaches
1.Balance of Power Approach 2.Loose Bi-Polar System Approach 3.Tight BI-Polar System Approach 4.Universal International System Approach 5.Hierachical International System Approach 6.Unit Veto System Approach

III. Policy Science Approaches


1.Decision-Making Approach 2.Communication Approach 3.Games Theory Approach 4.Bargaining Theory Approach 5.Equilibrium Approach

The Idealistic Approach

It is one of the classical approaches It is the liberal approach is followed in between the two world wars Woodrow was the proponent of this approach According to this approach, a society or nation is formed due to evolution. In this evolution there may be good or bad

In 1795 Condorcet visualized a world order free from war, in equality and tyranny. This new order would be marked by constant progress in human welfare brought about by the use of reason, education and science. The future system was visualized to be free from power politics, immorality and violence President Woodrow Wilson of USA who gave a concrete shape to this his idealism through text of Treaty of Versailles.

He made a strong plea for world peace and international organization. The difficulty of this system is that such a system could emerge only by following the moral principles in mutual relations in place of power, which is not possible in practice. Secondly, to bring about such order the totalitarian forces must be crushed by all means of through the use of democratic methods and the last necessity is the establishment of world government.

Realist Approach
The realistic approach was propounded by Hans J.Morgentheu and George Kenna Spykman are leading exponents of this theory. According to Morgenthau, the approach to the study of international relations should take into consider ration human nature as it is actually is, and not what it ought to be. It is human nature which is reflected at the international level under the name of foreign policy of a state.

Human nature is essentially selfish and wants to protect its own interest. The master key in the study of international relations is the attainment of power. Thus power is the essence of international relations.

The Principles of Realist Theory are:


1.Foreign policy should be based on facts and reason. 2.Foreign policy should be based on national interest defined in terms of power. 3.Meaning of national interest defined in terms of power should change with the changing circumstances. 4.No place for universal moral principles in international relations. 5.No identity between moral principles of a nation and universal moral principles. 6.Political sphere is autonomous and pervading

Morton Kaplans Six Systems Approach The systems approach is the result pf the behavioral resolution in international relation According to him International Relations implies two things: 1.International system 2.Nation state system. Nations or states are the main actors in the international politics and the role of the state with the change of international system. Kaplan believes that physical force is necessary to keep the system in tact and this force is present in the state system which is absent in the international system.

Kaplan treats six models of major international systems. They are : 1.The Balance of Power System : This system prevailed in the 18th and 19th centuries. The Balance of Power System approach has six rules : 1.Each state may increase its power without war i.e. through negotiation. 2.The primary object of each state is to protect its national interests even at the risk of war. 3.One should not eliminate an essential national participant. 4.The participant should oppose any coalition of other participants in order to avoid predominance of that group in relation to the rest of the system.

5.The participant should prevent other participants from subscribing to the supranational principles and 6.The defeated participants should be permitted to re-enter the system When the participants in this system, individually or collectively, do not play according to these six rules, The system becomes unstable.

ii. The Bipolar System : According to Kaplan, the unstable balance of power system changes itself Into a bipolar system. Kaplan conceives of two types of bipolar system. They are :1.The Loose Bipolar system ( The USA and the USSR) non-member actors : ( The Non-aligned states ) and the Universal actor ( The UNO ) 2.The Tight Bipolar System : Between USA and USSR. iii.The Universal International System: UNO Iv . Hierarchical International System : The establishment of World Government. V . Unit Veto system : The unit veto system would remain stable only if all the actors are prepared to resist threats and retaliate in case of an attack.