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ASU offers degree in global security


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May 16, 2017

Understanding current and future security challenges requires a holistic, multi-faceted approach linking a variety of areas of expertise connected to practical examples and case studies. Arizona State University looks to achieve this through their new interdisciplinary online master’s program in global security.

With the support from the Center on the Future of War, the School of Politics and Global Studies will be offering the new master’s degree this upcoming fall. The program trains students to critically engage in issues of global conflict and international security. 

With the global security degree being offered online, students from anywhere around the world are able to proceed at their own pace and study while working. The degree is aimed to offer intellectual tools to advance careers in the military, international development, diplomacy, global security management and related fields.

Daniel Rothenberg, professor of practice at the School of Politics and Global Studies and co-director of the Center on the Future of War, offers insight into ASU’s new degree.

Question: Why do you think global security is an important area of study/research?

Answer: Our lives are defined by connections and connectivity. Virtually everything now is global, in one sense or another. The extraordinary growth in the movement of things, people, ideas and influences creates enormous opportunities as well as a variety of new dangers and vulnerabilities. Global security impacts every aspect of our lives, from the traditional concerns of war, diplomacy and international relations to newly emerging issues linked to cyber, artificial intelligence, and climate change. Gaining an in-depth, interdisciplinary grounding in global security is essential for identifying, understanding and facing the challenges of our ever-more integrated and interdependent world.

Q: Being an online degree could appeal to those who wish to continue working while furthering their education.  How would a degree in Global Security help the careers of those in the military, international development, diplomacy, and related fields?

A: Our online degree allows people to pursue advanced training in global security while working full-time anywhere in the world. This means that we can work with active duty military posted on bases around the world, with humanitarian workers aiding refugees during the day, full-time students or professionals from almost any field. Master's degrees are essential for career advancement in many fields and our program provides a unique combination of theory and practice, with course content drawn from scholars, as well as journalists, former government officials, retired military and international development professionals. The degree is flexible and allows students to pursue their individual interests while gaining a foundation in key ideas and developing critical thinking skills to ensure advancement in many careers.

Q:  America Fellow David Wood recently said that the partnership between ASU and New America, a D.C.-based think tank, allows the Center on the Future of War to “have one foot in Washington and one in the real world.” Will that concept continue with this online MA degree?

A: The MA draws on the interdisciplinary expertise of over 100 ASU faculty from multiple fields (political science, policy studies, engineering, history, religious studies, etc.) as well as a team of several dozen journalists, retired military, former government officials, human rights advocates and others. It links rigorous academic training with a policy-oriented focus and practical case studies. In this way, we train students in major theories of global security and their direct, real-world implications.

Q: How do you think programs like this one will advance talks about global conflict and international security?

A: The goal of our program is to stimulate critical discussions about pressing global issues. Our classes all involve in-depth on-line discussions designed to deepen student understanding and sharpen their analytic skills. Rather than suggest the correct answers for the complex challenges we face, we aim to provide our students with the skills, tools and background to ask intelligent, thoughtful questions that acknowledge the complexity of our world.

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