International Relations in Europe

By Dr Kamil Zwolski, Politics & International Relations

Last week I attended the 8th Pan – European Conference on International Relations, which took place in Warsaw. It was a large event – at least by European standards. It was not as large as the Annual Conventions of the International Studies Association (ISA), which traditionally take place in North America, but big enough for the organisers to reflect on the strength of the discipline on the Continent. Interestingly, the conference was organised by the European International Studies Association (EISA), which is a new individual membership based association, created by the Standing Group on International Relations of the European Consortium for Political Research.

The name of the EISA, which is very similar to ISA, suggests that the organisers have an ambition to overcome the familiar European problem of fragmentation, with many different associations organising academic events on International Relations. This is a welcome development, which would certainly reflect the growing influence of Europe-based IR research. As an indication of this growing strength, one presenter showed how the leading IR journal in America, International Organization, has been increasingly engaging in debates with Europe-based scholarship, by increasingly referencing articles in journals such as European Journal of International Relations and Millennium. These are all very positive developments which may result in more and more American scholars travelling to Europe for conferences, rather than just European scholars attending ISA events!

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