POLS5613 Geopolitics in the Indian Ocean Region

6 points
Not available in 2019UWA (Perth)Face to face
This unit explores key geopolitical dynamics in the Indian Ocean region, a region comprised of the littorals of southern, eastern and the Horn of Africa, the Arabian Peninsula and South Asia, South East Asia and Western Australia, and including a range of island states. As a region characterised primarily by the relationship between maritime and terrestrial spaces, the unit explores core intersections of geography and politics. The unit first examines historical relations and conceptual dimensions of the region, including the challenges of region-building and international cooperation through organisations like the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA). The unit then examines key aspects of the region's contemporary international relations, including: global trade flows and the Blue Economy; strategic competition between major regional and extra-regional powers including China, India and the USA; maritime piracy, transnational organised crime and other regional security challenges; the politics of responding to environmental challenges such as climate change, natural disasters and exploitation of natural resources; and the politics of regulating regional migration. Completing students understand and are able to articulate key conceptualisations, characteristics and geopolitical dynamics in the Indian Ocean region.
Students are able to (1) understand the significance of, and be able to situate, the Indian Ocean region in the wider international system; (2) understand and be able to articulate the political dynamics and challenges involved in constructing and sustaining the Indian Ocean region as a distinct global region; (3) understand and be able to articulate key contemporary political dynamics and policy challenges in the Indian Ocean region, including those pertaining to economic, security, strategic, environmental and migration issues; (4) engage in informed and critical debates on relevant theories, concepts and practices pertaining to the Indian Ocean region; (5) construct a policy paper pertaining to a key policy challenge relevant to the Indian Ocean region; and (6) conduct and produce research pertaining to the geopolitics of the Indian Ocean region.
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) seminar participation; (2) policy paper; and (3) research essay. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Dr David Mickler
Contact hours
seminars: 18 hours (3-hour seminar per week for 6 weeks)
Unit Outline
Semester 1_2019 [SEM-1_2019]
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  • Books and other material wherever listed may be subject to change. Book lists relating to 'Preliminary reading', 'Recommended reading' and 'Textbooks' are, in most cases, available at the University Co-operative Bookshop (from early January) and appropriate administrative offices for students to consult. Where texts are listed in the unit description above, an asterisk (*) indicates that the book is available in paperback.