Teaching of international relations in Nepal (1).Introduction
International relations international relations, study of the relations among states and other political and economic units in the international system. Particular areas of study within the field of international relations include diplomacy and diplomatic history, international law, has been taught in Nepal for over the last 40 years, but has never emerged as an independent discipline on its own. There are a number of factors responsible for this situation, among which include the political conditions in the country, the rather slow growth of the manpower needed to teach the subjects, as well as the poor resource base from which it has had to operate.
It is the contention of this paper that time is now ripe for international relations to stand on its own in Nepal. But to understand the status of teaching of international relations in the country, one needs to first understand how it has grown within the umbrella of political science itself.
Political Science in Nepal
Political Science as an independent discipline was late in emerging in Nepal. During the 104 years Rana rule it was a forbidden subject and had no opportunity to lay its foundation since books on the subject could not even be imported by the ordinary people in the country. This did not however completely prevent the study of politics in general since learning of Eastern philosophical text could not be prevented. Mythological myth·o·log·i·cal also myth·o·log·ic
1. Of, relating to, or recorded in myths or mythology.
2. Fabulous; imaginary.
myth texts contained in the stories of the Vedas, Mahabharata, Ramayana and Manusmriti contained a rich supply of political philosophy, while important political works, such as Kautilya's Arthasastra, also provided knowledge of important political treatises. (2)
After the overthrow of the Rana autocracy After the death of Jang Bahadur, his eldest surviving brother, Ranoddip Singh, became prime minister (1877-85). Because he was childless, his term in office was full of plots by Jang Bahadur's sons and nephews over succession. in 1950-51, political science was introduced in Nepal not as an independent discipline, but as part of civics civics, branch of learning that treats of the relationship between citizens and their society and state, originally called civil government. With the large immigration into the United States in the latter half of the 19th cent. in matriculation ma·tric·u·late
tr. & intr.v. ma·tric·u·lat·ed, ma·tric·u·lat·ing, ma·tric·u·lates
To admit or be admitted into a group, especially a college or university.
n. examinations. Even then, teaching on the subject focused mostly on political thought and constitutional development, and only partially on public administration. This was so because, due to the lack of development in the discipline in previous years, colleges in Nepal were affiliated to Patna University, in India, and followed the hand-me-down British models followed by Indian universities.
The system continued till the establishment of Tribhuvan University Tribhuvan University is the largest and the oldest university of Nepal. It is situated in Kirtipur. The university was established in 1959 as the first university of the country. in 1959, when changes were gradually introduced in the curriculum to suit the national requirements. Intermediate level teaching (lower undergraduate level) focused on civic rights and obligations both at the theoretical and practical levels, with emphasis on the legal system of the country (Mulki Ain) and policies of the Panchayat Noun 1. panchayat - a village council in India or southern Pakistan
council - a body serving in an administrative capacity; "student council" political system in the country which had been introduced in the early 1960s. At the degree level (upper undergraduate level), public administration courses were introduced with greater focus on modern governments and working of the Nepalese Constitution. The post-graduate level was devoted to advance studies on Nepalese political system and incorporated studies on political system of the United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. , United Kingdom, Soviet Union and Yugoslavia, along with those of neighbouring countries like India, Pakistan and China.
With the introduction of the New Educational Plan in the early 1970s, the educational system was thoroughly overhauled at all levels, including the primary and secondary levels, with new emphasis on also given to vocational training (Sharma 1989). At University level, teaching methods shifted from the hand-me-down British-Indian system to the American semester se·mes·ter
One of two divisions of 15 to 18 weeks each of an academic year.
[German, from Latin (cursus) s system. During this period syllabi syl·la·bi
A plural of syllabus. were further refined to include courses on China and Japan and new attention was given to the study of behavioural and interdisciplinary approaches, while dissertation was introduced for qualified students who obtained 55 percent in the first part of their MA exams. This system continued till 1979-80, when political movement against the Panchayat system suddenly erupted through mobilization of students on colleges and University campuses. The first casualty of the political movement was the educational system as it was the first area in which the authority compromised, as it also agreed on a referendum to decide the fate of the Panchayat political system. Higher education higher education
Study beyond the level of secondary education. Institutions of higher education include not only colleges and universities but also professional schools in such fields as law, theology, medicine, business, music, and art. reverted to the earlier annual system from the semester system and courses were restructured in an ad hoc For this purpose. Meaning "to this" in Latin, it refers to dealing with special situations as they occur rather than functions that are repeated on a regular basis. See ad hoc query and ad hoc mode. manner without conceptualizing the purposes they were going to serve.
The inextricable in·ex·tri·ca·ble
a. So intricate or entangled as to make escape impossible: an inextricable maze; an inextricable web of deceit.
b. link between the political system and the teaching of political science in Nepal, as well as international relations, cannot but be emphasized. Whereas under the Ranas, the teaching of political science was considered to be a non-starter, under the Panchayat system with the King in absolute power it could be done so as long as it was "politically correct politically correct Politically sensitive adjective Referring to language reflecting awareness and sensitivity to another person's physical, mental, cultural, or other disadvantages or deviations from a norm; a person is not mentally retarded, but ". Although it is undeniable that political science as a discipline gradually grew both in the area of teaching and research under the Panchayat period, it is nevertheless debatable de·bat·a·ble
1. Being such that formal argument or discussion is possible.
2. Open to dispute; questionable.
3. In dispute, as land or territory claimed by more than one country. whether there truly existed an "environment conducive to academic exercises". A prominent example of this debilitative de·bil·i·tate
tr.v. de·bil·i·tat·ed, de·bil·i·tat·ing, de·bil·i·tates
To sap the strength or energy of; enervate.
[Latin d nexus was the abrupt dismissal in 1975 of a pioneering political science teacher with democratic inclination when he showed sympathy with the cause during students' unrest in the country (Jaiswal 1998).
If there ever was a golden era for the discipline of political science in Nepal it came after the People's Movement There have been a number of groups called the People's Movement or similar.
n. pl. mi·lieus or mi·lieux
1. The totality of one's surroundings; an environment.
2. The social setting of a mental patient.
[Fr.] surroundings, environment. in the heavily laden University bureaucracy in Nepal, (3) but that it found an outlet outside the traditional academic turf. Political freedom under democracy made possible the formation of groups and association which could conduct research and studies without political consideration and with a mind to quality. The availability then of funds from foreign donor agencies for studies on nascent nascent /nas·cent/ (nas´ent) (na´sent)
1. being born; just coming into existence.
2. just liberated from a chemical combination, and hence more reactive because uncombined. democratic process made it possible to conduct research that were inconceivable before. Although the University authority discourages its manpower going outside the traditional circle for fear of losing its human capital, it has been able to provide neither the resources nor the incentives to utilize the talents of members of its academic community effectively. As one observer has noted, there is a tendency both in the department and the administration of the University to muddle through mud·dle
v. mud·dled, mud·dling, mud·dles
1. To make turbid or muddy.
2. To mix confusedly; jumble.
3. To confuse or befuddle (the mind), as with alcohol. each and every new challenges instead of meeting them headon with imaginative responses (Dahal 1996:121).
In this environment was thus born Political Science Association of Nepal (POLSAN), which produced seminal works A seminal work is a work from which other works grow. The term usually refers to an intellectual or artistic achievement whose ideas and techniques have been adopted or responded to in later works by other people, either in the same field or in the general culture. on the 1991 elections in Nepal Elections in Nepal gives information on election and election results in Nepal.
Nepal elects on national level a legislature. The Parliament (Sansad) has two chambers. (POLSAN 1991) and a detailed study on political parties and parliamentary process in the country (POLSAN 1992). Although the group spilt spilt
A past tense and a past participle of spill1. after a couple of years due to personality clashes among its leading figures and closer association of these individuals to different political parties in the country, both groups have nevertheless been able maintain a healthy competition, producing different journals and holding workshops and seminar on topical themes. Other groups, like the Nepal Foundation for Advanced Studies (NEFAS NEFAS Northeast Florida Astronomical Society ) and Nepal Center for Contemporary Studies (NCCS NCCS National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship
NCCS National Center for Charitable Statistics
NCCS National Children's Cancer Society
NCCS North Canton City Schools (Ohio)
NCCS National Catholic Committee on Scouting ), and older institution like Institute for Integrated Development Studies (IIDS IIDS Integrated Instrument Display System
IIDS Integrated Information Display System ), have been able to fill the lacuna lacuna /la·cu·na/ (lah-ku´nah) pl. lacu´nae [L.]
1. a small pit or hollow cavity.
2. a defect or gap, as in the field of vision (scotoma). left to some extent by the academic community. What is even more interesting is that, although the Department of Political Science in Kirtipur was considered to be the focal point focal point
See focus. for academic studies, Prithivi Narayan Campus in Pokhara has been more successful in bringing out regularly its Journal of Political Science, whereas the central department with all its high level professors has not been able to continue its own journal, The Nepalese Journal of Political Science, for the past two decades.
Studies in International Relations
International Relations as a field of study in Tribhuvan University exists under the umbrella of the political science department, with all the assets and liability in which the department itself operates. During the early years of affiliation with Patna University, the course structure at intermediate level included international politics which was identical to that of the Indian university. The only modification introduced was that teachers could update the students by introducing recent trends. After Tribhuvan University was established, the subject was included at the post-graduate level and international organization and diplomacy was added as a single subject, with international law as compulsory part of the requirements.
Under the semester system, introduced in the early 1970s, the syllabi for studies in this field became little more intense as well as refined. In addition to the regular course on international politics, another course on advanced international relations was introduced as an option. International organization was offered as a separate optional course, as was the course on foreign policy and diplomacy, which now examined the foreign policies of major powers and neighbouring countries in greater depth. Regional studies were also offered, with one course on South and Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, region of Asia (1990 est. pop. 442,500,000), c.1,740,000 sq mi (4,506,600 sq km), bounded roughly by the Indian subcontinent on the west, China on the north, and the Pacific Ocean on the east. and the other on West Asia and Africa. Nepalese studies was also introduced, which focused entirely on Nepal's foreign policy. All these courses were offered in addition to comparative studies of governments of US, UK, USSR USSR: see Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. , China and Japan. (4)
However, when the Panchayat authorities capitulated after the political movement in 1979-80 and the semester system came to an end, the trend towards greater specialization in international relations was reversed as the annual system of teaching was reintroduced with generalized courses. As a consequence, regional studies were cut down drastically and courses on international organization and diplomacy were merged into a single unit, while course offering on foreign policy of the major powers was discarded. Even the course on advanced international relations was done away with and some of its topics merged haphazardly with the regular course on international politics. Expediency ex·pe·di·en·cy
n. pl. ex·pe·di·en·cies
1. Appropriateness to the purpose at hand; fitness.
2. Adherence to self-serving means: gave way to systematic planning and the muddling through exercise took over until a new curriculum was introduced in 1999 within the traditional annual system of education.
Developing new courses or updating the old ones are not usually done scientifically and are largely based on an "amalgam of previous experiences." (9) The new course structure at the post-graduate level attempts to synthesize To create a whole or complete unit from parts or components. See synthesis. the best of what was offered in the semester system with the needs of the annual system. While course structures are updated somewhat in each of the earlier subjects, regional studies is given more emphasis with the addition of Western Europe Western Europe
The countries of western Europe, especially those that are allied with the United States and Canada in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (established 1949 and usually known as NATO). and Western Hemisphere Western Hemisphere
Part of Earth comprising North and South America and the surrounding waters. Longitudes 20° W and 160° E are often considered its boundaries. as separate courses on top those offered earlier. (5) A more prominent change is seen at the graduate level courses which was made from a two-year to a three-year course, with the addition of a second optional course on international relations and inclusion of arms control arms control
Limitation of the development, testing, production, deployment, proliferation, or use of weapons through international agreements. Arms control did not arise in international diplomacy until the first Hague Convention (1899). as part of the course on international law. The most notable is the addition of a new field of study on national security, which is offered only at the Military Campus, in Kharipati, which is also affiliated to Tribhuvan University.
Unlike the impetus which political studies received in Nepal outside the University circle with the restoration of democracy in 1990, there was no similar opportunities for studies in international relations since funding available in the country was mostly, though not always, available in areas of democratic development in Nepal. The high point in the growth of studies on international relations occurred in the 1980s, independent of what political science was then experiencing as a discipline. The development took place not in the area of teaching, but in the area of research which the Center for Nepal and Asian Studies Asian studies is a field in cultural studies that is concerned with the Asian peoples, their cultures and languages. Within the Asian sphere, Asian studies combines aspects of sociology, and cultural anthropology to study cultural phenomena in Asian traditional and industrial (CNAS CNAS Center for North American Studies
CNAS College of Natural and Applied Sciences (University of Guam)
CNAS Center for a New American Security (Washington, DC)
CNAS Commission Nationale d'Action Sociale ) of Tribhuvan University had then committed to undertake under its new Director.
Although CNAS remains the bedrock for quality research in Nepal in such areas as culture, history, linguistic and anthropology, it started branching out into the field of international relations in the late 1970s by recruiting the needed manpower. The Center was, however, able to define its scope and perimeter of work only in the 1980s with clear-cut programmes. For most part of that decade, the Center functioned as "Think Tank" of the country on current international issues through its research studies and topical workshops and seminars. An international seminar was held in 1985 on regional security issues in South Asia This article is about the geopolitical region in Asia. For geophysical treatments, see Indian subcontinent.
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia , with luminaries from the region (Khatri 1987). The Centre also started a bi-annual journal, entitled Strategic Studies Series, in addition to publication of CNAS Yearbook which provided an overview of political developments in all the SAARC SAARC South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation member countries. Discussion programmes on current issues were also held regularly and its proceedings were published in its CNAS Forum. It published Documentation on SAARC for the years 1988, 1990 and 1990-95, cataloguing books and articles published in South Asia relating to relating to relate prep → concernant
relating to relate prep → bezüglich +gen, mit Bezug auf +acc regionalism re·gion·al·ism
a. Political division of an area into partially autonomous regions.
b. Advocacy of such a political system.
2. Loyalty to the interests of a particular region.
3. . In addition, the Center also had a manpower development programme that encouraged country specialization in each of the SAARC member countries, in addition to Japan and China. (6)
This promising period in the study of international relations was short lived. When a new Director took over the Center after the People's Movement in 1990, the original focus was lost. Subsequent directors have displayed neither the interest nor the skills necessary to promote international studies at the institution. Since then, most of the original manpower are no longer with the Center and those working at the institution have largely re-diverted their attention more to studies on democratic development in Nepal than on international issues.
Teaching Faculty in Political Science/International Relations
With four universities operating in Nepal in recent years, teaching of political science/international relations is confined con·fine
v. con·fined, con·fin·ing, con·fines
1. To keep within bounds; restrict: Please confine your remarks to the issues at hand. See Synonyms at limit. to only Tribhuvan University. The University has 114 different campuses throughout the country, out of which political science is taught in 24. Post-graduate level courses in political science is offered today in nine different campuses of the major cities, out of which, aside from Kathmandu, four (Pokhara, Birgunj, Janakpur and Biratnagar) have been teaching the courses at this level for nearly a decade. (7) The expansion in the number of campuses teaching post-graduate level courses have taken place not only due to increasing demands, but largely as a result of pressures from political leaders in their constituency to bring higher level education to their community. As course requirements are uniform throughout the country, this creates some difficulty since there is a dearth of specialized manpower needed to teach the various subjects. There is also discrepancy in the standard of teaching since the Kirtipur Campus is top heavy with senior teaching faculties; while those Campuses outside the capital often have to do with junior teaching staffs or young recruits who have graduated only recently. The problem is further aggravated ag·gra·vate
tr.v. ag·gra·vat·ed, ag·gra·vat·ing, ag·gra·vates
1. To make worse or more troublesome.
2. To rouse to exasperation or anger; provoke. See Synonyms at annoy. by the fact that aside from the Central Library in Kirtipur, in Kathmandu, library facility in other cities are hardly adequate to cater to the needs of the academic community.
The Kirtipur Campus, Which is the focal point of Tribhuvan University, epitomizes both the strengths and weaknesses of the teaching standards in political science in Nepal. Currently, there are 19 teachers in the department, out of which nine have doctoral degrees. Out of this total number, there are 10 professors, 7 associate professors and 2 lecturers. Although this represents an impressive work force, there are no supporting mechanisms within the University to provide professional growth of its teaching faculty. Despite the change in syllabi from time to time, teaching often involves regurgitating the same materials with very little emphasis in keeping up with developments on subject matters at the international level. Even the impressive list of PhDs and professors become important only in term of status and job security since only a handful in the department are actually involved in creative research work or professional development of their skills. This becomes a problem not only in further developing the teaching manpower within the country, but also in building the manpower who may be recognized regionally and internationally. This problem is magnified several folds with those involved in teaching and doing research on international relations since, with only four or five people involved in the field, the output and impact becomes even less.
Subject Popularity and Prospects
Despite the growth in the number of qualified teachers in Nepal and the expansion in the number campuses teaching political science/international relations in recent years, there is a relative decline in the quality and quantity of students taking the courses years. (8) In Kirtipur Campus alone, every year more than 200 students are admitted at the post-graduate level, but only 35-40 regular students attend classes during the first year. The number actually dwindles to half that number during the second year of classes. This is quite a contrast to a time in the 1980s when more than 200 students were admitted for the first year course and the group had to be split into two sections to accommodate the students who actually attended the classes regularly. (9) To teachers who have put in decades of service, it is disconcerting dis·con·cert
tr.v. dis·con·cert·ed, dis·con·cert·ing, dis·con·certs
1. To upset the self-possession of; ruffle. See Synonyms at embarrass.
2. to increasingly see student in recent years walking around campus and classes with only a single flimsy notepad The text editor that comes with Windows. It is a very elementary utility, but gets the job done most of the time. See text editor and WordPad.
(text, tool) Notepad - The very basic text editor supplied with Microsoft Windows. for all courses with never any books in hand. The tendency of students to largely rely on lectures notes and cheap books geared towards meeting only examination requirements has sapped the creative potentials of students who are likely to be future national assets in the country.
There are a number of factors that has led to this situation. First, even though a quota of 50 is fixed for admission each year, pressures from student unions within the University and frequent concessions by University authorities and governments to student pressures open the floodgates without regard to the impact it might have on quality education. Second, nominal entrance exams Noun 1. entrance exam - examination to determine a candidate's preparation for a course of studies
exam, examination, test - a set of questions or exercises evaluating skill or knowledge; "when the test was stolen the professor had to are taken, with almost an assurance that those who appear for the exam will be admitted. There are also no interviews taken in the selections process to choose the most competent applicants. Third, for the past six years, the Years, The
the seven decades of Eleanor Pargiter’s life. [Br. Lit.: Benét, 1109]
See : Time University has also done away with attendance requirements that used to be somewhat scrupulously scru·pu·lous
1. Conscientious and exact; painstaking. See Synonyms at meticulous.
2. Having scruples; principled. adhered to in the past. And, most important of all, in recent years future employment prospects for post-graduate students in political science are no better or worse than in other social science discipline, except for those in sociology and population studies.
Political science once used to boast about the popularity of the subject in Nepal and was one time a training ground for future government officers and administrators in the country. It has produced prime minister, countless ministers and ambassadors, but today with the service sector in the country expanding rapidly and the government receding from its earlier position as the largest employer in Nepal, it is not clear what kind of manpower the discipline is to carter to for the needs of the society. It is not difficult to see that there is a positive correlation Noun 1. positive correlation - a correlation in which large values of one variable are associated with large values of the other and small with small; the correlation coefficient is between 0 and +1
direct correlation between the decline in the popularity of the subject with the output the discipline has to offer to the country. There is, therefore, a need in teaching of political science and international relations to tailor its syllabi which will provide job opportunities to its students through quality education, without sacrificing requirements that the disciplines demands.
Course Contents and Library Facilities
The conscious efforts of political science teachers in the early years to structure courses that reflect the national conditions have been met to some extent. But, the tendency to use models from Indian universities, and sometimes of the other neighbouring countries, is still very strong. This has both positive and negative implications: positive, because it ensures that contents of the national syllabus does not fall below the regional standards; and negative, because it excludes the possibility of learning from other models of education, particularly the Western model, which have been the driving force in this field.
Although courses at the University may not be as up-to-date as those of leading American and British universities, they are nevertheless very broad in content. However, the problem arises in two areas: teaching and access to quality literatures on the subject matter. As there is no mechanism for faculty development in the University to provide refresher courses and further orientation to the teachers, there is always the drawback that the instructors themselves may be behind on the latest trends. Often course contents can sound impressive, but the teaching level may not be at par with which the courses were designed. For instance, such topics as conflict resolution and negotiation would be hard to teach without significant understanding of their theoretical foundation or important cases studies. Even such newly introduced topic at an undergraduate level on national security can be impressive on paper, but not so when it comes to actual teaching since the expertise needed to teach the course may be lacking.
The other problem has to do with access to quality literatures since books and articles on the recommended readings list for the courses may not be available even in the Central Library in the capital. Small libraries in campuses are resource starved starve
v. starved, starv·ing, starves
1. To suffer or die from extreme or prolonged lack of food.
2. Informal To be hungry.
3. To suffer from deprivation. and even the Central Library often finds it difficult to order books printed in the West because of the astronomical costs involved.
The same also applies to important journals on international affairs Noun 1. international affairs - affairs between nations; "you can't really keep up with world affairs by watching television"
affairs - transactions of professional or public interest; "news of current affairs"; "great affairs of state" . A rough survey taken by the writer for this paper on the periodical periodical, a publication that is issued regularly. It is distinguished from the newspaper in format in that its pages are smaller and are usually bound, and it is published at weekly, monthly, quarterly, or other intervals, rather than daily. holdings in the Central Library shows only 22 international journals are received today on a regular basis. Out of this number, 12 are received by the University through donations from local embassies or international agencies. The Central Library has impressive collection of Foreign Affairs foreign affairs
Affairs concerning international relations and national interests in foreign countries. starting from 1939 to 1980, but with very little regularity after that period. Important journals, such as Foreign Policy and International Security, do not even exist in the Library holdings, while other journals of well repute (Pacific Affairs, International Organization, Annals an·nals
1. A chronological record of the events of successive years.
2. A descriptive account or record; a history: "the short and simple annals of the poor" , China Quarterly, Current History, International Affairs (London), and even India Quarterly) which were available for many years, if not decades, are no longer in the Library's ordering list. The void in publications from strategic studies centers from South Asia alone suggests that it is not only the financial costs that is involved, but rather poor management of the journal section in the Library and equally poor coordination between the department and the Library. The Central Library has within the last couple of years introduced a handful of computers to provide students and teachers access to Internet for research purposes. But, without proper orientation to teachers and students on possibilities available for research in the cyberspace Coined by William Gibson in his 1984 novel "Neuromancer," it is a futuristic computer network that people use by plugging their minds into it! The term now refers to the Internet or to the online or digital world in general. See Internet and virtual reality. Contrast with meatspace. , the gesture so far remains symbolic.
Quality and Quantity of Research in International Relations
As we have seen before, there is a division of labor between teaching and research in political science/international relations between the department and CNAS. During the earlier 1980s when CNAS had a strong section on international studies, many scholars from the department were recruited full time and part time as well to meet the programme requirements. In the short years the Centre was intensely involved in this area, its contribution was widely recognized in the region and a few of the highly recognized regional experts used to also contribute to its journal, Strategic Studies Series. Since the 1990s, however, the Centre has not been able to maintain the same reputation with the sparse publications it has brought out in this field.
In recent years, research output in Nepal has come out more as individual endeavours of scholars than through support from academic institutions. Baral (1990) has led the way with varying publications ranging from regional migration and ethnicity to sub-regional cooperation. (10) Others have specialized on regional cooperation or security issues. (11) Some of them have obtained international recognition by being affiliated in the board of editors in international journals, such as Contemporary South Asia (Oxford University) and South Asian Survey Asian Survey (subtitled "A Bimonthly Review of Contemporary Asian Affairs") is an Asian studies journal published by University of California Press, in Berkeley, California on behalf of the Institute of East Asian Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. , and also members of the Advisory Board of the Regional Center for Strategic Studies, in Colombo, Sri Lanka Sri Lanka (srē läng`kə) [Sinhalese,=resplendent land], formerly Ceylon, ancient Taprobane, officially Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, island republic (2005 est. pop. .
Despite the inconsistency in University policy towards teaching and research of international relations, the trend is increasingly in its favor. Out of a dozen doctoral dissertations given by the University in political science since 1980, at least four have been on international relations, which lags behind study of Nepalese politics and is almost on par with those on public administration. In the last eight years, over 26 percent of masters thesis written by students have been on international relations, out of which a majority have focused on foreign policy issues and others on the UN and such topical themes CTBT CTBT Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty or intervention and international law. (12)
Conclusion and Suggestions
There is a strong case to support the establishment of a separate department of international relations in Tribhuvan University, especially after the long period of growth in the womb of the political science department. There is both a demand and a need for the subject, as well as adequate manpower required to teach it at the post-graduate level in Nepal. The idea of establishing an international relations department was once floated in 1991-92, but died easily due the inability of the proponents to sell the idea to the authorities in the University. However, before that can be done, there is need to prepare a conceptual paper outlining not only its objectives, but also the methods by which they could be met.
Till that time comes, there are a number of measures that need to be taken to strengthen the growth of the discipline in Nepal. They include the following:
* There is a need to develop area and theme specialist in international relations with specific area of expertise. The preference for generalist gen·er·al·ist
A physician whose practice is not oriented in a specific medical specialty but instead covers a variety of medical problems.
generalist over specialist during the early years in development of political science in Nepal needs to be taken to the next stage by creating manpower who can effectively contribute to specific areas of needs.
* As any other discipline, international relations is not an island by itself, but depends on knowledge sharing with various other fields. Teaching of IR in the University has to go beyond the formalistic for·mal·ism
1. Rigorous or excessive adherence to recognized forms, as in religion or art.
2. An instance of rigorous or excessive adherence to recognized forms.
3. classical style of teaching by incorporating inter, disciplinary courses that can draw on current developments and on pertinent global issues such as the impact of WTO See World Trade Organization. on trade, role of international financial institutions, management, population studies, and environmental and human security. For instance, the economics department already has a course on "international economics" and covers the same issues which students of IR also need to study. The same department also has a course on "international finance and economic cooperation" which it has not been able to teach because of the "lack of teachers" to cover the course. (13) It is conceivable that since the later course covers such issues as "regional economic cooperation" which is covered under the study of regional organizations (or "regionaLism") in political science, the two departments could pool their resources to cover the courses together. As it is beyond the scope of teachers even in political science department in the Kirtipur campus to teach these courses on their own, the department must draw on the teachers of other departments in the University to tackle these courses competently. (14)
* Manpower development in political science/international relations has to keep in mind how its products from the University will meet the needs of the society. It is not enough to impart theoretical knowledge that will not be sellable in the real world. There is need to make course programmes more practical which will provide education not only on what is happening, but also how things can be resolved. Providing students with practical on job experience with the numerous international organizations, groups, or even government ministries in the country is a possible option.
* A need for refresher programs for all teachers is desperately needed at all levels so that they may be able to keep themselves updated in their specific fields. Post-doctoral studies offered under the Fulbright Program This article or section needs sources or references that appear in reliable, third-party publications. Alone, primary sources and sources affiliated with the subject of this article are not sufficient for an accurate encyclopedia article. offers such possibilities, but is severely limited in the number of grants offered to potential candidates. The University also needs to work out such programs with Ford Foundation, Carnegie Endowment, Japan Foundations, Asia Foundation and others in order to systematically upgrade the quality of its faculty. An additional option is also to establish exchange programs with other South Asian universities Asian University (Asian U), formerly Asian University of Science and Technology, is an international university located in Chonburi, Thailand, about 25 km from Pattaya. where scholars maybe able to conduct research for a period of 6-9 months. As it was done in the early years in the department of political science, scholars from other universities, particularly from the West, should also be encouraged to come and teach new courses at Tribhuvan University in a systematic and planned manner with the support of donor agencies.
* It is inconceivable that any discipline, including international relations, can grow in the University without adequate library facilities for both its students and teaching staffs. There is a strong need to review the ad hoc mechanism for coordination which currently exist between the department of political science and Central Library so that books and journal that are sorely needed can be obtained for use. It is important not only to prioritize pri·or·i·tize
v. pri·or·i·tized, pri·or·i·tiz·ing, pri·or·i·tiz·es Usage Problem
To arrange or deal with in order of importance.
v.intr. the needs, but also to streamline the process so that libraries in Nepal can function as the foundation for higher education in Nepal, instead of operating as fiefdom fief·dom
1. The estate or domain of a feudal lord.
2. Something over which one dominant person or group exercises control: of its own.
* As increasing research materials are becoming available on the web site, there is also a need to provide training to teachers and students on the use of the cyberspace. It is also conceivable that the creation of a web site at a regional level in South Asia with list of universities teaching and doing research on international relations would also be useful in learning from each other's experience. Such a web site could contain the list and structure of courses on international relations with names of teachers/researchers who could act as contact points for individuals working in the area.
The author is indebted to a number of people without whose help it would have been difficult to produce this paper. They include: Prof. T. N. Jaiswal, Prof. Dev Raj raj also Raj
Dominion or rule, especially the British rule over India (1757-1947).
[Hindi r Dahal and Mr. Hari Ram Hari Ram was a pundit who explored the region around Mount Everest in 1871-1872. At first he was not allowed to enter Tibet, but his luck changed when he met a district official whose wife was ill. Rijal in the Department of Political Science, Kirtipur; Prof. Nirmal Tuladhar and Prof. Dhruba Kumar at CNAS; and Prof. Niranjan Sharma, Dean's Office, Kirtipur.
(1.) Paper presented at Roundtable on "Teaching of International Relations in South Asian Universities," organized by the USEFI USEFI United States Educational Foundation in India , New Delhi New Delhi (dĕl`ē), city (1991 pop. 294,149), capital of India and of Delhi state, N central India, on the right bank of the Yamuna River. , India, April 30-May 1, 2001
(2.) For an overview of early years, see, B. C. Malla, "Development of the Study of Political Science in Nepal," in Prayag Raj Sharma, ed., Social Science in Nepal: A Report of the proceedings of a Seminar on Social Science in Nepal held at INAS INAS Institut National d'Administration Sanitaire (National Institute of Health Administration, Morocco)
INAS Institutional Needs Analysis System
INAS Inertial Navigation & Attack System
INAS Instituto Nazionale Assistenza Sociale in October, 1973, Institute of Nepal and Asian Studies, Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, Nepal, September, 1974, pp. 130-146. See also, Prachanda Pradhan, "Critique on Political Science in Nepal, ibid., pp, 147-149.
(3.) One writer contends that "the trend" is no different between the earlier Panchayat system and present democracy since the objectivity required of the discipline is lacking even now. He suggests that whereas, on the one hand, scholars tend to blindly follow the party line for the own personal benefits, on the other, political parties "do not like objective analysis of politics, nor do they like critical appreciation of their roles." See, Ananta Raj Poudyal, "Political Science in Nepal," The Kathmandu Post, September 4, 1999, p. 4.
(4.) See, Courses of Study (1977-1980): Political Science Degree in Humanities and Social Sciences, Tribhuvan University, Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences, Dean's Office, Pokhara, Nepal.
(5.) See, Political Science: MA Political Science Curriculum, 1999, Faculty of Humanities and Sciences, Curriculum Development Center, TU, Kathmandu, Nepal.
(6.) For an important work prodded during this period, see, Dhruba Kumar, Mao and China's Foreign Policy Perspectives (Kathmandu: CNAS: 1989).
(7.) The remaining four campuses where MA level courses were introduced only recently include: Dang dang
Used to express dissatisfaction or annoyance.
adv. & adj.
tr.v. danged, dang·ing, dangs
n. , Nepalgunj, Surkhet and Mahendra Nagar
(8.) Some actually believe that political science is in a "poor state of affairs." Among the reasons given are: failure of political scientists "to bring home to the society what political science really means and why it is indispensable for the overall development of the country"; and the lack of quality teachers since "it is not possible to get the right type of teachers in sufficient numbers if they are underpaid un·der·paid
Past tense and past participle of underpay.
not paid as much as the job deserves
underpaid adj → , are not motivated, have lower professional status and are not provided with attractive conditions of service." See, T. N. Jaiswal and Panna K. Amatya, "Development of Political Science in Nepal," in Prem K. Khatry, ed., Social Sciences in Nepal: Some Thoughts and Search for Direction (Kathmandu: CNAS, 1997), p. 55.
(9.) An assessment of the department made 18 years ago makes a very interesting point when the departments used to be "over-crowded by the student population which is increasing in recent years." See, Baral and Suwal, op. cit., p. 95.
(10.) Lok Raj Baral, Regional Migrations, Ethnicity and Security (New Delhi: Sterling Publishers, 1990); Lok Raj Baral, Politics of Balanced Interdependence in·ter·de·pen·dent
Mutually dependent: "Today, the mission of one institution can be accomplished only by recognizing that it lives in an interdependent world with conflicts and overlapping interests" : Nepal And SAARC (Delhi: Sterling, 1988). Lok Raj Baral, The Regional Paradox: Essays in Nepali and South Asian Affairs Asian Affairs, the Journal of the Royal Society for Asian Affairs, has been published continuously since 1914 (formerly as the Journal of the Royal Central Asian Society). It covers a range of social, political, and historical subjects linked to Asia. (Delhi: Adroit Publishers, 2000); Lok Raj Baral, ed., Looking to the Future: Indo-Nepal Relations in Perspective (Delhi: Anmol, 1996); and Muchkund Dubey, Lok Raj Baral, and Rehman Sobhan Rehman Sobhan (Bengali: রেহমান সোবহান), a prominent economist, played a significant role in the nationalist movement of Bangladesh. , eds., South Asian Growth Quadrangle quadrangle
Rectangular open space completely or partially enclosed by buildings of an academic or civic character. The grounds of a quadrangle are often grassy or landscaped. : Framework for Multifaceted mul·ti·fac·et·ed
Having many facets or aspects. See Synonyms at versatile.
Adj. 1. multifaceted - having many aspects; "a many-sided subject"; "a multifaceted undertaking"; "multifarious interests"; "the multifarious Cooperation (Delhi: Macmillan, 1999).
(11.) Sridhar K. Khatri, "A Decade of South Asian Regionalism," Contemporary South Asia, Vol. 1, No. 1 (1991); Sridhar K. Khatri, "The Politics of Becoming a Community: Stages and Prerequisites," South Asian Survey, June 1998; Sridhar K. Khatri, "SAARC: Regionalism in the Shadow of Bilateralism," Paper presented at the Conference on Multilateralism, Bilateralism and the Search for Security in Asia, organized by the Centre for International Studies and the Asian Studies Centre, St. Antony's College, University of Oxford, 11-13 May 2000 (forthcoming); Sridhar K. Khatri, A. N. Ram, and Kant K. Bhargava, eds,, South Asia 2010: Challenges and Opportunities (New Delhi: Konark Publishers, 2001); Dhruba Kumar, ed., Nepal's India Policy (Kathmandu, CNAS, 1992); Dhruba Kumar, South Asia After the Nuclear Test: Securing in Security, CNAS Occasional Paper, September 1999; and Dhruba Kumar, "Trends in Security Studies in Nepal: Recent Trends and Future Directions," Dipankar Banerjee Dipankar Banerjee is a retired Major General of the Indian Army and an eminent defence, foreign policy, and strategic studies expert based in India. He is presently the Founding Director of the Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies, India’s leading independent defence , ed., Security Studies in South Asia: Change and Challenges (New Delhi: Manohar, 2000), pp. 159-192.
(12.) Calculated for the years 1992-2000 from records in the Political Science Department, Kirtipur, Kathmandu, Nepal.
(13.) See, Economics: MA Economics Curriculum, 1999, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Curriculum Development Centre, TU, Kathmandu, Nepal, pp. 28-29, 48-49.
(14.) The Central Department of Economics already has a course of International Economics, and it covers the same issues which students of IR also need to study. The same department also has a course on International Finance and Economic Cooperation which has not been able to be taugh because of the "lack of teachers" to cover the course. It is conceivable that since the latter course covers such issues as Regional Economic Cooperation wich is covred under the study of regional organizations (or "regionalism) in political science, the two departments could complement each other in these areas. See, Economics: MA Economics CurricuLum, 1999, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Curriculum Development Centre, TU, Kathmandu, Nepal, pp. 28-29, 48-49.
Baral, Lok Raj and Yasoda Suwal. 1984. "Political Science in Nepal: Infrastructure and Development." In Mohani Lohani (ed.), Social Science in Nepal: Infrastructures and Programme Development. Kathmandu: Institute of Humanities and Social Science/TU.
Dahal, Der Raj. 1996. "Nepalese Political Science: An Overview with a Bibliography." Annual Review of Tohoku University This article is Tohoku University in Japan. The same name university in China, 東北大学, is Northeastern University (Shenyang, China).
Tohoku University ( of Art and Design, No. 3.
Jaiswal, T.N. 1999. "Professor Basudev Chandra Malla: Contribution and Role." Professor Badudev Chandra Malla Smriti Smriti (Sanskrit स्मॄति, "that which is remembered") refers to a specific body of Hindu religious scripture. Smriti also denotes non-Shruti texts generally, seen as secondary in authority to Shruti. Granth. Kathmandu: Prof. Basudev Chandra Malla Prathistan, pp. 139-141 (In Nepali).
Khatri, Sridhar K. ed. 1987. Regional Security in South Asia. Kathmandu: CNAS/TU.
POLSAN. 1991. Nepalese Voters: A Survey Report. Kathmandu: POLSAN.
POLSAN. 1992. Political Parties and the Parliamentary Process in Nepal: A Study of the Transitional Phase. Kathmandu: POLSAN.
Sharma, Suresh R. 1989. "Educational: Then and Now." In Kamal Prakash Malla (ed.), Nepal: Perspectives on Continuity and Change. Kathmandu: CNAS/TU, pp. 395-403.