What Is International Relations?

International Relations is concerned with relations across boundaries of nation-states. It addresses international political economy, global governance, intercultural relations, national and ethnic identities, foreign policy analysis, development studies, environment, international security, diplomacy, terrorism, media, social movements and more. It is a multidisciplinary field that does not restrict students to one approach and employs a variety of methods including discourse analysis, statistics and comparative and historical analysis.

International Relations is an increasingly relevant field of study

International Relations is becoming increasingly relevant as the world grows more and more interconnected through trade and commerce, migration, the internet and through social media, and concerns about pressing global environmental problems.

A globalized world calls for academics and professionals trained to comprehend these complex interactions - promoting understanding and crafting policy and business solutions to meet the challenges of today and the future. International Relations offers a comprehensive and adaptable toolkit particularly well suited to employment in a rapidly changing world.

International Relations at SF State

The Department of International Relations in the College of Liberal & Creative Arts explores the interrelations of the world’s primary political institutions, nation-states. As the world is changing, so is the field of International Relations. Increasingly, International Relations at SF State also focuses on multinational corporations, international governmental and non-governmental organizations and social movements. Our curriculum is under constant review to reflect these global and regional trends.

Our students study specific countries and geographic regions and their interconnections through political treaties, trade, migration, cultural and ethnic affinities, shared social, economic, and ideological goals, hierarchies of power and wealth and other factors. We train students in different theoretical approaches and empower them to make their own methodological choices.

Studying IR at SF State is a step out into the world

Whether you are looking to start or develop your professional career, enter academia, or simply gain understanding of a globalized world, International Relations at San Francisco State will provide you with a solid platform of critical knowledge and skills. We offer a wide selection of courses, taught by a diverse faculty with expertise in the most pressing issues and dynamic world regions today.

Our alumni can be found across the world in non-profit, private and government positions. These include the U.S. Department of State and other countries’ foreign ministries, the City of San Francisco and other local governments, U.S. intelligence agencies, non-profit organizations in the areas of international development, human rights, international labor, environment, and international migration as well in business. A significant number of our graduate students also pursue further professional or doctoral studies at high-ranking academic institutions around the world.