The Institute offers Master's degree, certificate, and continuing education programs with a professional curriculum covering the various elements of statecraft. It includes an interdisciplinary foundational course of study of the relevant elements of comparative political culture, Western moral precepts, practical political economics, and political and diplomatic history.
The Institute differs from other schools by emphasizing the importance of the ideas and belief systems that animate different political cultures, their forms of statecraft, and their foreign policy purposes. Its curriculum is based on the following premises: that the search for truth is central to honest academic inquiry; that there are standards by which ideas, human behavior and actions of states must be judged; and that United States national security and the promotion of peace with freedom and justice can be achieved only by leaders who understand and appreciate the principals underlying America's historical success as a political economy and world leader.
The Institute's curriculum has six major components:
- The study of all of the elements of statecraft, including: the arts of war, peacemaking, and diplomacy; public diplomacy and cultural diplomacy; psychological strategy and political action; economic strategy; intelligence and counterintelligence; the exercise of intangible instruments of power such as moral leadership, will power, courage, rhetoric, etc.; and the integration of such elements into overall national strategy.
- The study of: diplomatic history; salient elements of comparative political culture, ideology and religion; the practices of foreign powers; and developments that affect the security interests of the United States. This component focuses on the often-neglected role and consequences of ideas in international politics. It also includes the study of unpleasant realities of international affairs, such as: treaty violations; massive violations of human rights; terrorism; disinformation, strategic deception and psychological warfare; economic warfare; espionage; and other instruments employed by authoritarian regimes that the United States is likely to encounter in the world.
- The review of fundamental principles of American political philosophy, including: democratic republicanism, limited government, individual rights, private property, the rule of law, and morally ordered political and economic liberty.
- The study of the Western moral tradition and the application of ethics to policy.
- The study of economics, including economic statecraft and salient elements of economic theory and history necessary for those working in the defense, intelligence, and foreign affairs communities.
- Character-building education that encourages those who pursue public service to cultivate those qualities necessary for statesmanship and moral leadership.