SPEIR anniversary coming up!

In the 2014/15 academic year, we mark the 50th anniversaries of both the Economics and Politics Departments. Both were created out of the Department of Political Economy in 1964, and since 2011, are united again under the roof of the vibrant School of Politics, Economics and International Relations (SPEIR).

SPEIR Nostalgia pic

This black and white photograph portrays the Political Economy Department of 1964, outside the HumSS building where our students still learn today.

This year, while we are celebrating the past 50 years of world-leading research and teaching in both departments, we are also looking forward, and want to build on our undisputed record and strengths in research, teaching, and engagement with the wider world. Politics, Economics, and International Relations at Reading have never been more exciting than today!

Ground-breaking research

•     In 2014, our School performed highly in the Research Excellence Framework results. The research outputs from Politics and International Relations were ranked in the top 10 of the country.
•     Professor Catriona McKinnon is leading a new interdisciplinary doctoral training programme in climate justice that is supported with over £1 million from the Leverhulme Trust. Find out more here.
•     We host four cross-disciplinary research centres: the Ways of War Centre, the Centre for Developing Economies and Emerging Markets (DEEM), the Reading Ethics and Political Philosophy Centre (REAPP) and the Centre for Institutional Performance (CIP) have hosted a large number of events throughout the term, bringing together leading scholars.

SPEIR pic 1

Innovative teaching

•     We run one of the only Model United Nations (MUN) modules in the country, with students organising an annual MUN conference in Reading, and participating in MUN conferences across the world – and normally returning with a bag full of prizes!
•     Next year, we will for the first time run a Parliamentary Studies module, which is directly supported by the Houses of Parliament. Find out more here.
•     The weekly lunchtime ‘Conversations’ in Economics, where students and staff discuss the economic dimensions of current affairs, are a very popular addition to our formal teaching.
•     More of our students than ever are undertaking valuable and inspiring placements. Recent appointments have included working for the Foreign Office, Human Rights UK, and even the retail analytics division of Disney!

Engagement with policy

•     Staff members of the departments are working with government departments like the Department for International Development (DFID), Communities and Local Government, and the military.
•     We are running regular Policy in Practice events, with speakers from the policy world, and policy papers that develop the implications for policy and practice of our research.

SPEIR pic 2

Look out for events celebrating our half centenaries over the coming months! Click here to read our termly newsletters and hear about our upcoming events.

Did you study Politics, Economics or International Relations at Reading? We’d love to hear your stories! Get in touch at e.l.kay@reading.ac.uk and let us know.