The Political Science Department was formally established in 1955, within what was then the Department of Economics and Social Science, as part of a broad effort to develop research and training at MIT in the social sciences. The nucleus of a Political Science faculty had already been formed within the Center for International Studies, a pioneering, interdisciplinary research center working on American foreign policy and security issues, economic and political development in the Third World, Communist societies, and international communication. By 1958, a Ph.D. in political science had been authorized. Political Science became an independent department in 1965, offering an undergraduate major and a Master's degree, as well as the Ph.D.

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Recent Submissions

  • 17.565 Israel: History, Politics, Culture, and Identity, Spring 2011 ?

    Eiran, Ehud (2011-06)
    The course provides the students a basic understanding of modern Israeli history, politics, culture and identity through lectures, discussions and projects. Among the topics to be explored are: ideational, institutional ...
  • 17.42 Causes and Prevention of War, Spring 2009 ?

    Van Evera, Stephen (2009-06)
    The causes and prevention of interstate war are the central topics of this course. The course goal is to discover and assess the means to prevent or control war. Hence we focus on manipulable or controllable war-causes. ...
  • 17.869 Political Science Scope and Methods, Fall 2010 ?

    Berinsky, Adam (2010-12)
    This course is designed to provide an introduction to a variety of empirical research methods used by political scientists. The primary aims of the course are to make you a more sophisticated consumer of diverse empirical ...

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