The research programme of the Unit is centred on combining theory and practice. We aim at facilitating the conversation between social and critical theory and political philosophy on the one hand, and empirical historical and sociological work on problems in areas such as global governance, international security, cold war history, or regional integration., on the other. Our goal is to build bridges across the divides between normative and sociological reasoning and theoretical and empirical work which often characterize international relations research. Building such bridges implies recognizing that good theory requires good empirical reconstruction work, problem-driven research as well as strong methodological reflexivity. Understanding the international requires cutting across disciplines. Participants in the unit come from various disciplinary backgrounds. This includes the school’s core disciplines, legal studies, political science and international relations, but also cognate fields, such as geography, sociology, or economics. Our research has attracted funding from leading grant authorities and stakeholders, including the Economic and Social Research Council, the Leverhulme Trust Fund, the British Institute in Eastern Africa, or the U.S. Department of State.