A key recommendation of the bipartisan 9/11 Commission’s final report strongly validates the Institute of World Politics’ standard approach to education on statecraft and national security.
“The first phase of our post-9/11 efforts rightly included military action to topple the Taliban and pursue al Qaeda,” said the report, issued on July 22, 2004.
However, as important as military action is, according to the commissioners’ unanimous statement, “long-term success demands the use of all elements of national power: diplomacy, intelligence, covert action, law enforcement, economic policy, foreign aid, public diplomacy, and homeland defense. If we favor one tool while neglecting others, we leave ourselves vulnerable and weaken our national effort.“
This has been the driving educational philosophy of IWP since the school was founded in 1990. This is what has made IWP so different from all the other graduate schools of foreign service and national security. In our mission statement, we comment on why we are unique:
“The Institute of World Politics is unique among graduate schools, filling several educational needs with a curriculum offered by no other academic institution in America, and perhaps the world. This curriculum is designed to prepare students to be effective leaders in statecraft, national security, and foreign policy. It includes the study of all the instruments of power and how these instruments are integrated at the level of grand strategy. These include: diplomacy; military strategy; opinion formation and public diplomacy; intelligence and counterintelligence; psychological strategy; political action and political warfare; economic strategy; moral suasion and other forms of ‘soft power’; and effective leadership.
“The Institute’s curriculum exposes students to the full spectrum of international realities, including history, political culture, the practices of foreign powers (including those that exceed traditional diplomatic norms), current and potential threats, and the strategic role of ideas, values, and belief systems in world politics. In doing so, the Institute’s courses examine subjects that are often ignored either in the academy or by our official foreign policy and national security culture and its training centers.”
“At the Institute, we believe that when governments resort to force it is often a sign of the failure to use the many non-military instruments of power effectively. Thus, we maintain that the most fruitful study of statecraft involves study of all the instruments of power – including several that are often neglected – and how they must be used ethically and prudently.
Dr. Lenczowski added, “When force must be used, we believe that it must be strategically integrated with these other instruments in order to achieve policy goals most effectively and with minimum loss of life.”
We designed our curriculum with this integrated, strategic approach in mind – at a time when most other universities were changing or even eliminating their national security studies programs in favor of changing academic trends.
Today, we are the only private graduate school in the nation’s capital that offers a Master’s degree program in national security affairs.