Fall 2021


, 4 pts, GU4808


The emergence of cyberspace as an arena for strategic competition and, potentially, conflict between political actors has prompted scholars and practitioners alike to seek to understand behavior in cyberspace and its implications through the lens of central concepts in international politics. In this course, we will explore the causes and consequences of state and non-state behavior in cyberspace from the perspective of international relations theory and grand strategy. Specifically, the course aims to answer three related, foundational questions. First, what accounts for the behavior of political organizations in cyberspace, as well as patterns of cyber behavior in the international system? Second, how can core theories of international politics and security studies account for state and non-state behavior in cyberspace, and where do they fall short? And finally, what are the implications for significant outcomes in international politics, including systemic stability, the balance of power, escalation, warfighting, arms control, global governance, and other important variables? The course will further assess the consequences for U.S. cyber policy, and U.S. strategy in general, although it will also cover strategies and policies of a number of different important actors around the world from both a U.S. and non-U.S. perspective. The course is organized into three blocks. The first block covers key definitions and theoretical concepts and their application to cyberspace; the second explores implications for international politics; and the third is focused on policy applications.

Section Number
Call Number
Day, Time & Location
W 4:10PM-6:00PM
Erica D Borghard