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Power Instruments


Admission requirements

This course serves as the introductory course for the minor Global Affairs and can thus only be followed as part of the minor or the track. The minor is accessible for bachelor students who have obtained their ‘propedeuse’ and have a keen interest in global affairs, but the level of teaching is most suitable for third-year students, particularly of Political Science, Public Administration, Law and International Studies. If there are any uncertainties about the suitability of your programme and profile to the minor, please do not hesitate to send an email to .


The concluding course of the minor Global Affairs will discuss ‘Power Instruments.’ During this course, students will learn about and discuss the power instruments of diplomacy, economy and military in a globalised and changing world. The main question will be: what are the consequences of the geopolitical developments for the use of the power instruments? How effective is diplomacy? How effective are economic sanctions and the use of military force? To conclude the course students will write a paper in which they will be required to research the efficacy of power instruments in a specific case.

Course objectives

At the end of the course, students will be able to:

  • explain and apply the concept of coercion;

  • apply the concept of coercion on specific cases;

  • demonstrate a well-founded understanding of the use of diplomacy, economic sanctions and military force in international politics;

  • outline the most prominent studies on coercion


The course will take place from December 1st till December 19th 2014. The exact times and dates of the lectures have yet to be decided upon, but during those three weeks the course will meet 2 or 3 times a week for three-hour lectures.

Mode of instruction

The class will consist mainly of lectures and class debates in which current affairs pertaining to the course content will be discussed and analysed.

Assessment method

Research paper (50%)
Final exam (50%)



Reading list

Nye, J.S. (2011), ‘The Future of Power’, New York: Public Affairs
Wijk, R. de (2014), ‘The Art of Military Coercion’, Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press
More articles and readings will be decided upon right before and during the course.


Students register for the minor and the course in Usis.


Prof.dr. Rob de Wijk, The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies

Contact information

For general questions about the minor Global Affairs:

For specific questions about the course, please contact the secretary of prof.dr. Rob de Wijk, Ms Daniella Kranendonk:


This course can only be taken as part of the minor Global Affairs.