skip to primary navigationskip to content

News Archive

last modified Oct 01, 2013 03:15 PM


Dr Sharath Srinivasan and Dr Alastair Fraser awarded Cambridge-Africa Alborada Research Fund

Two researchers from the Centre of Governance and Human Rights (CGHR) in POLIS, Dr Sharath Srinivasan and Dr Alastair Fraser, have been awarded £10,000 and £5,000 respectively by the Cambridge-Africa Alborada Research Fund for research collaborations with colleagues in Kenya and Zambia. This will allow Dr Srinivasan and Dr Fraser to expand their research under the ESRC-DFID funded 'Politics and Interactive Media in Africa'

Dr Amrita Narlikar awarded a Leverhulme Research Fellowship for 2013-2014

POLIS is pleased to announce that Dr Amrita Narlikar, Reader in International Political Economy and the Director of the Centre for Rising Powers, has been awarded a Leverhulme Research Fellowship for 2013-2014, to work on a new research project "The Power of the Poor: International Economic Negotiations in a Globalising World". The Leverhulme Research Fellowships are awarded on the basis of a competition that is open to experienced researchers across the full range of academic disciplines. The scheme is a highly competitive one: 588 applications were reviewed this year with a success rate of 16%. The grant will allow POLIS to appoint a replacement lecturer to cover Dr Narlikar's teaching while she is working on the project.

2013 Alcuin Lecture announced

Professor Loukas Tsoukalis will deliver the 2013 Alcuin Lecture on Wednesday 5 June. Professor Tsoukalis will talk on 'Is there a future for the European Union - and with Britain in it?'. Please could those who are interested in attending send in applications to by 31st May. For more information please see the poster.

POLIS affiliated Junior Fellow awarded Dan David Prize

POLIS is pleased to announce that Dr Katrina Forrester has been awarded a Dan David Prize Scholarship for her research project ‘Philosophy and Real Politics in Liberal Political Thought: On the Relation of Theory and Practice from the End of Ideology to the End of History 1950-2000’. A small number of these international prizes are awarded annually to post-doctoral researchers from across the humanities and sciences.

Professor John Loughlin appointed to the Chaire Ganshof van der Meersch at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB)

Professor John Loughlin, Affiliated Lecturer in POLIS, Director of the Von Hügel Institute and a Fellow of St Edmund's College, has been appointed to the Chaire Ganshof van der Meersch at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) for the academic year 2013-14. The Chaire is endowed by the Fondation Wiener-Anspach as part of the Fondation’s support for academic exchanges between the ULB and the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge. Professor Loughlin will pursue research on European federalism and the current financial crisis and also on the place of religion in public and political life.

CSAP Co-Hosts External Champion to the Global Uncertainties Programme

Tristram Riley-Smith, has been appointed as a Director of Research to support his role as the External Champion to the Research Councils' Global Uncertainties (GU) Programme at CSaP.

The GU Programme focuses on six core areas associated with the causes and consequences of insecurity in the world:

  • Ideologies and beliefs
  • Terrorism
  • Transnational organised crime
  • Cybersecurity
  • Threats to infrastructures
  • Proliferation of chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear (CBRN) weapons & technologies.

Tristram will work as a high-profile ambassador for the Programme, seeking to enhance opportunities for impact and knowledge exchange by connecting researchers across the UK (in receipt of £384m of funding) to national and international policy makers, public bodies, non-governmental organisations, the private sector and the wider public.

Tristram aired his early thoughts about the role with the GU Annual Conference in London on 26 March. In the first months he plans to consult stakeholders; review the portfolio of projects; and promote greater levels of engagement between end-users and researchers. He wants to run a triage process to identify a small number of projects which could achieve early impact with the support of stakeholders. He emphasised five core principles which underpin his work:

  • promote the importance of partnership;
  • respect the academic quest for knowledge, as a valued end in itself;
  • engage with ethical and security concerns of researchers and stakeholders;
  • recognise the significance of the GU Programme for stability and well-being;
  • focus on a drive to deliver beneficial, practical outcomes from the GU programme.

Tristram welcomes comments, ideas or insights that you would like to share about the programme (, especially if you have benefited from GU funding. You can e-mail him at

POLIS is currently recruiting two University Lecturers

The Department of POLIS is currently advertising two University Lectureships. One is to be in the field of Latin America or South Asia and the other will be in Comparative Politics with a specialist interest in Europe (including the UK) and/or the United States. For further information please see the Job pages of this website.

2013 Hinsley Lecture to be given by Prof. Stephen Walt

POLIS is pleased to announce that the Hinsley Lecture in 2013 will take place on November 13 and will be given by Professor Stephen Walt. Stephen M. Walt is the Robert and Renée Belfer professor of international affairs at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government.

New Chair in Politics announced

The Department is very please to announce that David Runciman has been recruited to the position of Chair in Politics.

Dr Bell awarded Cambridge Humanities Research Grant

Dr Duncan Bell has secured a Cambridge Humanities Research Grant to aid his project "Dreamworlds of Empire: Utopia, Race and the Project for a New Anglo Century".

The Masters in Public Policy officially launched

The Masters in Public Policy was officially launched at an event on the 29th November at the Institute of Governance in London. The programme will take its first students from October 2013. For further information, please see the University Web pages

Dr Duncan Bell awarded Philip Leverhulme Prize

The Department is pleased to announce that Dr Duncan Bell has been awarded a prestigious Philip Leverhulme Prize in recognition of his scholarly work in the history of political thought. For further information please see the Leverhulme website.

Professor David Allen, 1949-2012

Many people in POLIS, especially those working in the area of European Studies will be sad at the news of the death of Professor David Allen, a good friend of the Department who acted as external examiner in the past, and informal adviser to many young researchers. Please follow the link for the THE obituary.

The US election seen from East Asia: what is at stake?

Dr K-C Lin will be on the panel for a debate being held as part of the Festival of Ideas, on Saturday 27 October, 3:00PM - 4:15PM . For further information, please see the listing on the Festival of Ideas website

Advanced Notice: Hinsley Lecture

POLIS is pleased to announce that the annual Hinsley lecture will be given by Fraser Cameron on 14 November at St John's College. Dr Cameron will speak on "Power and the Pursuit of Peace – An EU Dream or Illusion".

Six Five Year Postdoctoral Research Fellowships

Applications are invited for 6 postdoctoral research associates to work on Conspiracy and Democracy: History, Political Theory and Internet Research, the Leverhulme-funded interdisciplinary, collaborative project led by Professor Sir Richard Evans (History), Dr David Runciman (Politics and International Studies) and Professor John Naughton (CRASSH); and based at the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities (CRASSH), starting 1 January 2013 to 31 December 2017. For more information please see the CRASSH website.

Dr Glen Rangwala awarded Pilkington Prize

Dr Glen Rangwala has been awarded one of the twelve annual Pilkington Prizes recognising outstanding teaching. Dr Rangwala received his prize from the Vice Chancellor at an awards ceremony at Downing College. For more information please see the University News webpages

Butler Prize winners announced

For full details of the winners of this year's Butler Essay Prize for Sixth Form Students please see the R.A. Butler webpage.

David Runciman awarded the Bernard Crick Prize for the best article published in The Political Quarterly in 2011

POLIS Academic Dr David Runciman has won The Political Quarterly Crick Prize. David Runciman’s piece ‘Can Democracy Cope’, which appeared in issue 82 4 won praise from the Board’s judges for its insightfulness and deep understanding of the theme. He was awarded the prize at the Orwell Awards in Church House on 23 May.

Dr Josip Glaurdic and Dr Alex Anievas awarded Leverhulme Early Career Fellowships

The Department is pleased to announce that Dr Josip Glaurdic and Dr Alex Anievas have been awarded prestigious Leverhulme Early Career Fellowships and will be joining the Department in 2012-13

POLIS PhD student awarded Political Studies Association's Lord Bryce Prize

Dr Alex Anievas has been awarded the Political Studies Association's Lord Bryce Prize for Best Dissertation in International Relations/Comparative Studies for his Dissertation on ‘Capital, States, and Conflict: International Political Economy and Crisis, 1914-1945’

POLIS Department academics star turn at Hay-on-Wye festival

Hay-on-Wye festival

Cambridge Public Policy (CPP) set up to coordinate the development of new approaches to public policy

Cambridge Public Policy (CPP) is a University of Cambridge initiative set up to coordinate, support and encourage the development of new approaches to public policy, informed by the best available research, teaching and practice.

The CPP website has more details of the initiative.

Prof. Loughlin appointed an Officier in the Ordre des Palmes Académiques

Professor John Loughlin, Director of the VHI and Fellow of St Edmund's College, was appointed an Officier in the Ordre des Palmes Académiques by the French Government in 2010. He received the award at a ceremony at the French Embassy's Cultural Centre in March 2012. The Ordre des Palmes Académiques is the second oldest order of chivalry and was established by Napoleon I in 1808. It is award to French citizens for services to higher education in France and to non-French citizens who make a significant contribution to French culture and learning. Professor Loughlin received the award in recognition of his" contribution to the French culture and language in the United Kingdom and for his extensive research into European politics".

POLIS academic assists UN and Egyptian Government

Professor John Loughlin, Director of the VHI and Fellow of St Edmund's College, has been assisting the United Nations-Habitat and the Egyptian government to develop a new system of regional governance and planning for Egypt. After many years of dictatorship and a highly centralized administrative system, Egypt, like many other countries in the world, has been moving towards a more decentralized system. Professor Loughlin chaired a UN-Habitat committee of experts which produced a set of 'Guidelines on Effective Decentralization' which were adopted unanimously by the UN-Habitat General Council, consisting of 60 countries, at their meeting in Nairobi in 2007. Professor Loughlin has researched and written extensively on regionalization and decentralization in European countries. His most recent publication in this area is the Oxford Handbook of Local and Regional Democracy in Europe, jointly edited with Frank Hendriks and Anders Lidstrom and published by Oxford University Press in 2010 which covers all 27 EU member states as well as Norway and Switzerland. In 2007 he published Subnational Government: the French Experience. He is currently editing the Routledge Handbook of Regionalism and Federalism which is due to be published in 2012.

R.A. Butler Prize for essays in Politics and International Studies (02/03/2012)

The essay questions for the 2012 round of the R.A. Butler Prize have now been released. The competition for Year 12 (lower 6th) students for essays in Politics and International Studies is run by POLIS in association with Trinity College. The prize aims to encourage students with an interest in modern politics and world affairs to consider undertaking university studies in Politics, International Studies or a related discipline, and to recognise the achievements of high-calibre students and those who teach them. For more information please see the R.A. Butler webpage.

Cambridge PhD students win Politics in Spires best blog competition

Politics in Spires is pleased to announce that the prize for the best blog published from November 2011-January 2012 will be awarded to the joint authors of ‘How are election preparations unfolding in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)? Hope or failure? Two perspectives’—Hubertus Juergenliemk, PhD student at POLIS, University of Cambridge and a Visiting Doctoral student at the University of Oxford during the academic year 2011-12, and Lindsay Scorgie, PhD student at POLIS, University of Cambridge. Please read their blog here.

Scot Peterson, of the Oxford Politics in Spires Oversight Committee says, ‘The blog was really interesting, original and thought-provoking It was well argued and incorporated material from students’ field work for their degrees. This is exactly what we are looking for – congratulations!’

The next round of the blog prize will run from February – April 2012: please send blogs to We look forward to hearing from you! For more information, click here.

David Miliband in discussion with Prof. Gamble

David Miliband, Labour MP and former Foreign Secretary, will be speaking at the Cambridge Union on Wednesday 1st February at 12 noon. Mr Miliband will be discussing the issues of the day with Prof. Gamble, Head of the Department of Politics and International Studies, before the floor is opened for questions. We expect this to be a very popular event and University ID will be required for entrance.

POLIS MSt. Student awarded MBE

A student on the Master of Studies in International Relations course, Damian Platt, has been awarded the MBE for his work in the favelas, or shantytowns, of Rio de Janeiro. Damian was given the award by HRH the Prince of Wales at a ceremony at Buckingham Palace in December. For more information please see

PLEASE NOTE: On 3rd January 2012 the Department of POLIS moved to the Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT.

Over the Christmas Vacation the Department moved to a new home, the Alison Richard Building on 7 West Road. POLIS is now housed in a dedicated state-of-the-art building alongside the area centres and the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences, and Humanities, and it is based on the University's Sidgwick site which is home to many other Humanities and Social Science Departments.

Politics in Spires: A thoroughfare for all thoughts on politics and international relations

Politics in Spires is a collaborative effort between the Department of Politics and International Relations, University of Oxford and the Department of Politics and International Studies, University of Cambridge. The website aims to promote and disseminate research and to engage in scholarly debate on current affairs, addressing topical issues in a timely fashion.

Politics in Spires:

Cambridge's POLIS is ranked 3rd in the world

Cambridge University's Politics and International Studies courses are ranked 3rd in the world in the first comprehensive set of international rankings at subject level. For more information please see the New QS World University Rankings by Subject 2011 - Social Sciences website.

Winners of the R.A. Butler Prize for essays in Politics and International Studies (06/07/2011)

The winners have been announced for the R.A. Butler Prize for essays in Politics and International Studies 2011. The first prize is £600, to be shared between the candidate and his or her school or college. The second prize is £400. For more information please see the R.A. Butler webpage.

CGHR Research Associate Vacancy (06/07/2011)

The Centre of Governance and Human Rights (CGHR) is seeking to appoint a Post-Doctoral Research Associate to work for up to 15 months on the research project ‘New communication technologies and citizen-led governance in Africa’. Further details about the position available and full information on the application procedure can be found at

Republicanism and Religion: A colloquium in memory of Émile Perreau-Saussine (17 Feb 2011)

Emile Perreau-Saussine

On 17 February 2011 in Fitzwilliam College a memorial colloquium was held in honour of our friend and colleague Emile Perreau-Saussine, who died tragically in 2010.

Details of the event are available from the colloquium's page.

University lecturer vacancy (7 Feb 2011)

Applications are invited for a University Lectureship in the Department of Politics and International Studies, from 1st October 2011. There is some flexibility in the field of the lectureship, and we particularly welcome applications from candidates specialising in the politics of China (including foreign policy and political economy). Other areas where the Department is seeking to strengthen its research and teaching include international security and foreign policy, the politics of the United States, and British politics and public policy. Further details about the position available and full information on the application procedure can be found at

José Manuel Barroso, the President of the European Commission (2 Feb 2011)

José Manuel Barroso, the President of the European Commission, will be visiting the University on Friday 18 February to give the annual Alcuin lecture (sponsored by Lord Brittan). The lecture will take place in the Department of Chemistry, Lensfield Road, at 5pm. Admission will be by University card and photo-ID only.Applications to by 12 noon on Wednesday 9 February.

Dr Barroso is an academic economist by background, and ex-Director of the Department of International Relations at Lusiada University, as well one time Prime Minister of Portugal. At this critical time for the European economy, and indeed for Europe's external relations, his remarks will be of particular interest to members of POLIS.

For more information see the poster for the event.

Catalan Election Event (28 Nov 2010)

On the occasion of the Elections to the Parliament of Catalonia on 28th November, the Catalan Government's Delegation to the United Kingdom, in collaboration with Catalans UK, has the pleasure to organise for the first time a reception in London to follow the election results. The event will count with the presence of Prof John Loughlin, University of Cambridge, and Mr Germà Capdevila, Managing Editor of Catalonia Today, who will comment and explain the results. The event will be presented by Ms Laura Pous, Correspondent of the Catalan News Agency.

For more information, please contact Prof John Loughlin,

EVENT CANCELLATION: 'India as a Rising Power' - The Honourable Mamata Banerjee (25 Oct 2010)

Due to certain unforeseen political developments in the state of West Bengal, the Indian Minister for Railways, the Honourable Mamata Banerjee, has had to postpone her trip to Cambridge. The launch of the new Centre for Rising Powers, and its inaugural lecture, are postponed to Lent Term 2011. For any queries about the Centre, please contact Dr Amrita Narlikar,

Details of the event can be found at: (note that this is a link to an external website)

Monique Canto-Sperber - postponed (25 May 2010)

Monique Canto-Sperber was due to speak at the POLIS seminar on 25th May 2010, but unfortunately has had to postpone this appearance.

Marie Curie Initial Training Network (19 Mar 2010)

POLIS will be home to a Marie Curie post-doctoral fellow and a PhD student in the Autumn as part of the new INCOOP network. The network will focus on institutional cooperation in the EU and Cambridge hopes to appoint in the fields of immigration and energy and climate change. Further details about the positions available and full information on the application procedure can be found at

Details of the INCOOP network can be found at: (note that this is a link to an external website)

Dr. Emile Perreau-Saussine 1972-2010 (26 Feb 2010)

Dr. Emile Perreau-Saussine 1972-2010

CIS publication listed in '100 Books for Global Thinkers' (18 Dec 2009)

Counter-insurgency expert David Kilcullen ('The accidental guerilla') has listed John Bew, Martyn Frampton and Inigo Gurruchaga's 'Talking to terrorists. Making peace in Northern Ireland and the Basque country' (2009) (published by the Centre series 'Crises in World Politics') as one of the '100 books for global thinkers' recommended by Foreign Policy magazine.

For more details: click here (note that this is a link to an external website)

POLIS to launch new Centre of Governance and Human Rights on 18 November 2009

POLIS celebrates the launch of the Centre of Governance and Human Rights on 18 November 2009 with an Inaugural Lecture by Francis M Deng, the United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide. Deng will speak on the subject of ‘Managing Diversity as a Strategy for the Prevention of Genocide and Mass Atrocities’.

With special reference to Africa, the Centre will generate fresh thinking on governance challenges and ideas of human rights in the 21st century. Globalisation and greater integration require developing countries engage more than before with international institutions, rules and norms. Yet shifts in the fulcrum of world power raise new questions on the common values underpinning international order and determining human well-being, on how they are pursued, and on their impact upon developing states and societies. Innovations to address persistent underdevelopment, political instability and human vulnerability must understand and navigate this changing political landscape. Drawing upon Cambridge’s long and distinctive tradition in politics and international studies going back over a century, the Centre of Governance and Human Rights will develop new courses on the politics of governance and human rights for undergraduates and graduates, and it will serve as a hub for research collaboration throughout the University. It will also bring together practitioners, policymakers and academics from developed and developing countries to build dialogue about the role of rights and governance in tackling development and security priorities. The Centre is already forging links with research institutions and practitioners in Africa.

Thanks to a generous donation from The David and Elaine Potter Foundation, a new endowed lectureship has been established to provide a dedicated Director for our new Centre in its first phase. More information on the Centre, the launch and recordings of Francis Deng's lecture will appear on the POLIS website after the event.

POLIS Launch Lecture (5 May 2009)

The Department of Politics and International Studies (POLIS) was formally launched on 5 May with a lecture and reception in the Law Faculty Building on the Sidgwick site, next door to where POLIS will be relocated in a brand-new building in 2011. The lecture was given by Professor Christopher Hill, with the title 'Changing the World? The problem of action in international politics' to an audience of colleagues and invited guests of over 120 people. The occasion was chaired by Professor John Bell, the Chair of the School of Huumanities and Social Sciences, and was followed by a lively Question and Answer session, and then a reception. A PDF of the lecture's text is to be found below. POLIS has 22 University Lecturers, five College Lecturers, and four administrative staff. Professor Andrew Gamble is the Head of Department and Angela Polletine the Administrative Officer. Three major research centres are contained within the new department: the Centre of International Studies, and two new ones, the Centre of Governance and Human Rights and the Cambridge Centre for Political Thought, which is joint collaboration with History. POLIS is located within the Faculty of Politics, Psychology, Sociology and International Studies (PPSIS) and is represented on the Council of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences. The lecture notes are available here.

RAE 2008 (28 Jan 2009)

The RAE results just released have Politics and International Studies at Cambridge in 11th equal place in the list of 59 units assessed. Our grade profile was as follows: 20% or work was graded at the 4* level (‘world-leading’), 30% at 3* (‘internationally-excellent’), 30% at 2* level (‘internationally-recognised’) and 20% at 1* level (‘nationally recognised’). This is very pleasing, as it represents a clear improvement from 2001 when we were ranked c 24th (The different grading system used then makes exact comparisions difficult). This represents a sound foundation for the start of the new Department of Politics and International Studies (POLIS) in January