Moving Global IR Forward - A Road Map

Maiken Gelardi

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Many disciplinary analyses have exposed international realtions (IR) as a Western-centric discipline, unaware of or unconcerned with its own ethnocentric outlook. A growing consensus in the global IR framework argues that it is time to move beyond disciplinary critique, but scholars disagree on how to proceed. Three key issues are still being debated: who can speak, how to go local, and how to make the local global. This article confronts these questions by offering three interlinked contributions. First, it develops a typology of scholarly profiles by combining the typically isolated debates on scholarly origin, embeddedness within local context, and location. Second, the article identifies three main strategies for discovering and developing theories outside the core. Third, it offers four different avenues for applying local theories to the larger global canvas, underlining that Global South theories should not necessarily be limited to their “own” regions. Together these three contributions constitute a comprehensive roadmap for how to advance global IR's research agenda. The article provides examples focused on Latin America, highlighting the benefits of the roadmap while also giving agency to regional theoretical debates that are often overlooked in the Global IR debate.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Studies Review
Pages (from-to)830-852
Number of pages23
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020


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