Geopolitical Scenario Planning (Maastricht Summer School)


Geopolitical Conflict Analysis 1: Fragmented Identities, Rising Powers and International Security Threats [Summer School]For the seventh time, Dr. Leonhardt van Efferink (GeoMeans) is Course Leader at Maastricht Summer School in 2019.

One of his courses is Geopolitical Scenario Planning. Below, you find more information about this course. To apply for this Summer School, please click here.

Please contact Leonhardt if you cannot find the answer to your question on this page.

“One of Leonhardt’s most remarkable skills as university lecturer is his perceptive understanding of different views as well as the formulation of challenging questions.” – Juan Pablo from Argentina

Introduction to Geopolitical Scenario Planning Summer School

Click on the image to download pdf file with timetable of this course
The melting of the Arctic ice cap, the disputed maritime boundaries in the South China Sea and the involvement of many states in the Syrian War underline the geopolitical complexity in international relations.

This course teaches you the skills to identify the geopolitical drivers of inter-state conflicts, write scenarios for these conflicts and assess the impact of these scenarios on the foreign policy strategy of the states involved.

What is national security, and why is it often seen as a national interest? Which territories and maritime areas are subject to conflicts between states? And how can scenario planning help you imagine the future of such conflicts and anticipate likely responses to them by the states involved?

To answer these questions, you first analyze the geopolitical risk drivers of one geopolitical conflict. You then analyze the foreign policy strategy of one of the states that are involved in this conflict. The final assignment is a group effort and concerns the writing of four scenarios for one geopolitical conflict, and the possible responses of the aforementioned state to each scenario.

You present your findings in class. Interactive lectures and roundtable discussions help you prepare for your assignments.

To apply for this Summer School, please click here.

Goals of Geopolitical Scenario Planning Summer School

▪ Designing an analytical framework to study the role of geopolitical factors in foreign policy;
▪ Writing scenarios for areas that are contested by multiple states and exploring plausible foreign policy responses by these states;
▪ Understanding how national security as a key national interest can be defined by states;
▪ Developing your critical thinking skills by productively combining knowledge, assumptions and questions;
▪ Boosting your employability by acquiring valuable skills required for positions in business, government and academia.

Timetable of Geopolitical Scenario Planning Summer School

Maastricht University, The Netherlands, 5-9 August 2019 (Timetable may be subject to change)(To apply for this Summer School, please click here)
Day Start Time End Time Title Type
Monday 9:00 10:00 1. Introduction of Convenor, Participants and Program RD
10:00 11:00 2. Your Assignments IL
11:00 12:00 3. Geopolitics, Geostrategy and Geo-Economics IL
12:00 13:00 4. National Identity, National Power and National Security IL
(Lunch Break)
14:00 15:00 5. Geopolitical Scenario Planning 1: Driving Forces IL
15:00 16:00 6. Driving Forces of Egyptian-Ethiopian Rivalry over Nile Water WS
Tuesday 9:00 11:00 7. Driving Forces of Geopolitical Conflicts SP
11:00 12:00 8. Geopolitical Scenario Planning 2: Foreign Policy Strategy IL
12:00 13:00 9. Foreign Policy Strategy of Egypt and Ethiopia WS
Wednesday 9:00 11:00 10. Foreign Policy Strategy of Countries Involved in Geopolitical Conflicts SP
11:00 12:00 11. Geopolitical Scenario Planning 3: Writing Scenarios IL
12:00 13:00 12. Scenarios for Egyptian-Ethiopian Rivalry over Nile Water WS
Thursday (Finishing Your Presentation for Friday)
Friday 9:00 12:00 13. Scenarios for Geopolitical Conflicts SP
12:00 13:00 14. Lessons Learned and Way Forward RD

Suggested literature for Geopolitical Scenario Planning Summer School

Below you find some general reading suggestions. It is not required to do some reading before the course.

If you like to read something, select the sources that are closest to your research interests. Alternatively, please ask Leonhardt for personal reading advice or visit this page.

▪ Baldwin, D. (1997) The Concept of Security. Review of International Studies. Vol. 23, pp. 5-26.
▪ Beasley, R.K., Kaarbo, J., Lantis, J.S. and Snarr, M.T. (2013) Foreign Policy in Comparative Perspective. Domestic and international influences on state behaviour.
▪ Cattaruzza, A. and Sintès, P. (2016) Géopolitique des conflits.
▪ Gourdin, P. (2010) Géopolitiques. Manuel de géopolitique.
▪ Jarvis, K. and Holland, J. (2015) Security. A critical introduction.
▪ Kelly, E. (2006) Powerful times. Rising to the challenge of our uncertain world.
▪ Lindgren, M. and Bandhold, H. (2009) Scenario planning. The link between future and strategy.
▪ Nye, J. S. Jr. and Welch, D.A. (2016) Understanding global conflict and cooperation: An introduction to theory and history (10th ed.).
▪ Smith, S., Hadfield, A. and Dunne, T. (eds., 2016) Foreign policy. Theories, actors, cases (3rd ed.).
▪ Schwartz, P. (1996) The art of the long view – Planning for the future in an uncertain world.

To apply for Geopolitical Scenario Planning Summer School, please click here.

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