In addition to our public events, the Centre hosts and supports by-invitation workshops that bring leading academics and practitioners to St Andrews.

International law in times of transformation: How does international law deal with systemic change?
8 November 2019
Organisers: Dr Adam Bower and Dr Mateja Peter
Co-sponsor: BISA International Law Working Group

International law has developed in spurts, often following a dramatic reordering of power structures precipitated by the conclusion of major wars. Today, core elements of the contemporary multilateral global order are arguably under increasing pressure due to a new systemic reordering. Not only are we experiencing a switch from a unipolar to a multipolar order, but the system is also under serious strain from pressures emanating from non-state actors (terrorism, organised crime, refugees) and new technologies. Participants were asked to reflect on how international law deals with systemic change by shedding light on one or both of the guiding questions that oriented the workshop: (1) What can past power transitions teach us about contemporary challenges to international law?, and (2) What adaptations of existing international rules and institutions are we already seeing and are these sufficient to respond to a systemic change in power relations?

Threads, War, and Conflict
3-29 April, 2019
Organisers: Dr Lydia Cole (Durham), Dr Laura Mills, Dr Faye Donnelly, and Dr Natasha Saunders
Co-sponsors: CSTPV; CGC; the ISS, IPT and PCS MLitt programmes; and the University Teaching Enhancement Fund.

Threads, War and Conflict was a month-long exhibition of conflict textiles which explored issues of gendered violence, killing and disappearance, as well as displacement and migration, hosted at The Byre Theatre. The associated programme of events explored the intersections of political art and textile, war and violence and community resistance. The organisers were awarded the Political Studies Association’s ‘Innnovations in Teaching Politics (Group) Award’ on 8 April, 2020. More information on the textiles, exhibition, and events can be found here:

Is the English School Still an Underexploited Resource in IR?
12-13 October, 2017
Organiser: Filippo Costa Buranelli
Co-sponsors: CGC; School of IR; Millennium: Journal of International Studies

This two-day event intended to gather both established and rising voices within English School Theory with the aim to reflect on, comment on and conceptualise new trajectories and themes within English School Theory, thus discussing its lively and multi-faceted character as an established theory of International Relations. Five main areas were investigated: the practice turn of the School, links with international history, the ‘new functionalism’, the rise of regions and the restructuring of world order.


  • Costa Buranelli, Filippo, ed. 2020. “The English School of IR: Present Status and Future Prospects in a Changing World.” Forum section. Cambridge Review of International Affairs 33(4): 464-501.

How Do International Organisations Respond to Terrorism: Global and Regional Responses
3 November 2016
Organiser: Bernhard Blumenau
Co-sponsors: CSTPV; Pierre du Bois Foundation for Current History

This workshop addressed the role that global and regional institutions have been playing in antiterrorism both at present and in the past. The objective was twofold: First to see and analyse antiterrorism efforts put in place by international global and regional organisations and to assess the question of agency within these processes. Second, it investigated to what extent the implementation of these efforts both internationally and domestically posed problems of efficiency or caused conflicts of legal orders. International organisations are thus seen both as actors in their own rights as well as fora where states (and possibly other stakeholders) meet and negotiate relevant actions.