17.478 | Fall 2013 | Graduate

Great Power Military Intervention

Instructor Insights

Course Overview

This page focuses on the course 17.478 Great Power Military Intervention as it was taught by Professor Roger Petersen and Professor Barry Posen in Fall 2013.

This course examined systematically, and comparatively, great and middle power military interventions, and candidate interventions into civil wars from the 1990’s to the present. This course also asked what the experiences of the 1990’s can teach us about similar, but not identical, subsequent interventions and candidate interventions.

Course Outcomes

Course Goals for Students

By taking this course, students should gain a broader overall understanding of broad trends in international politics and globalization. They should also gain a grasp of the interaction between domestic politics and international politics, as well as more nuts and bolts issues of military power projection.

Curriculum Information


  • Permission of the instructor

Requirements Satisfied

Student Information


12 students

Typical Student Background

This course is designed for beginning level graduate students as well as advanced undergraduates and others with an interest in or experience with interventions. In addition, several visiting military fellows usually take this course.

How Student Time Was Spent

During an average week, students were expected to spend 12 hours on the course, roughly divided as follows:


  • Met once a week for 2 hours per session; 13 sessions total; mandatory attendance.
  • All students were expected to participate in class, and to complete the readings.
  • One or more students per week were asked to make a 10-minute presentation outlining the key issues raised in the reading.

Out of class

Course Info

As Taught In
Fall 2013
Learning Resource Types
Written Assignments
Instructor Insights