Introduction to International Relations

Degree Program: Social Administration (2nd semester – elective)

Degree Program : Political Science (2nd semester – compulsory)

Teaching hours: 3 per week-5 ECTS

Course tutor: Assistant Professor. Sotiris Serbos

Content and brief description:

The course is designed as a broad and detailed introduction into the advanced, interdisciplinary study of International Relations and includes some of the most important issues of international politics and the basic analytical concepts that are used to study these issues. The key aim is to introduce students to the main theories of international relations, and how they are applied to the analysis and explanation of contemporary (national & international) policy issues. In this respect, students will learn about topics including amongst others perspectives in international relations (realism, idealism/liberalism), actors in the international system, international conflict, foreign policy analysis, international political economy & development, international law and organizations, nationalism, environment, the new world order. In light of the above, lectures will provide a framework for evaluating the implications of both theory and history for contemporary international politics, where students can raise issues and topics for in-class group discussion.

Course outline:

  • Roots and history of contemporary international relations
  • Theories of international relations and world politics
  • International Organizations
  • Diplomacy and international law
  • International interventions and national sovereignty
  • Regional integration and international politics
  • International political economy
  • Human rights, environmental protection and sustainable development
  • Globalization and interdependence

Learning outcomes:

At the end of the course and having completed the essential reading and activities students should be able to:

  • Understand the interdisciplinary nature of International Relations
  • Offer an overview of world politics in an era of globalization; to provide the necessary background regarding the fundamental transformation in the nature of world politics, caused by globalization.
  • Present the main theoretical approaches available to explain contemporary world politics.
  • Provide an analysis of the major actors in the international system (nation-states, international organizations, NGOs etc.).
  • Analyze and evaluate the role of power, national interest, values and ideas in contemporary world affairs.
  • Develop a theoretical and empirical understanding for the analysis of major contemporary issues and problems in IR theory and international politics.
  • Recognize their role and responsibilities as global citizens, and of the consequences of his/her lifestyle choices upon global issues.
  • Build up a cosmopolitan identity, by realising common problems and values.


  • Final exam (100%)
  • Essay for extra credit (20%)


  • Heywood, A., 2013. Διεθνείς Σχέσεις και Πολιτική στην Παγκόσμια Εποχή. Αθήνα: Εκδόσεις Κριτική.
  • Baylis, J., Smith, S. & Owens, P., 2013. Η Παγκοσμιοποίηση της Διεθνούς Πολιτικής: Μια εισαγωγή στις Διεθνείς Σχέσεις. Θεσσαλονίκη: Εκδόσεις Επίκεντρο.
  • Jackson, R. &Sorensen, G., 2006. Θεωρία και Μεθοδολογία των Διεθνών Σχέσεων: Η Σύγχρονη Συζήτηση. Αθήνα: Εκδόσεις Gutenberg.
  • Κουλουμπής, Θ., 2008. Διεθνείς Σχέσεις: Ισχύς και Δικαιοσύνη. 2η έκδοση. Αθήνα: Εκδόσεις Παπαζήση.
  • Υφαντής, Κ., 2012. Διεθνής Πολιτική Θεωρία: Η Γοητεία του Ρεαλιστικού Λόγου. Αθήνα: Εκδόσεις Σιδέρη.
  • Χατζηκωνσταντίνου, Κ., Σαρηγιαννίδης, Μ. & Μπαξεβάνης, Χ.,2012. Θεωρητικές Αφετηρίες στις Διεθνείς Σχέσεις. Αθήνα-Θεσσαλονίκη: Εκδόσεις Σάκκουλα.
  • Wight, M., 1998. Διεθνής Θεωρία: Τα Τρία Ρεύματα Σκέψης. Αθήνα: Εκδόσεις Ποιότητα.
  • Τσινισιζέλης, Μ. & Υφαντής, Κ., 2000. Σύγχρονα Προβλήματα Διεθνών Σχέσεων, Κρατική Κυριαρχία: Απειλές και Προκλήσεις. Αθήνα: Εκδόσεις Σιδέρη.
  • Ηρακλείδης, Α., 2000. Η Διεθνής Κοινωνία και οι Θεωρίες των Διεθνών Σχέσεων. Αθήνα: Εκδόσεις Σιδέρη.
  • Nye, J. &Weltch, D., 2012.Understanding Global Conflict and Cooperation: An Introduction to Theory and History. 9th edition. New York: Peterson.