The #1 IR Textbook. Classic perspectives and contemporary coverage on the issues your students care about.

Active teacher Heather McKibben continues to enliven Karen Mingst’s classic text with a new chapter on the environment and extensive coverage on the coronavirus pandemic and global health. Expanded InQuizitive activities and new biweekly News Analysis Activities help students apply concepts and theories to real-world examples.

Read the new environment chapter

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Features of the NEW edition

New chapter on the environment

NEW Chapter 11: The Enviroment provides an in-depth look at one of the biggest issues of our time—one that students around the world care deeply about—and answers critical questions about how IR theories can help us understand environmental issues.


InQuizitive adaptive learning activities help students understand international relations theories and concepts, and apply that knowledge to real-world scenarios and current events outside the textbook

News Analysis Activities

NEW bi-weekly News Analysis Activities engage students in applying the main theories of IR to a current news story, and help students connect concepts from the text with global events from around the world.

About the Authors

Karen A. Mingst

Karen A. Mingst is Professor Emeritus at the Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce at the University of Kentucky. A specialist in international organization, international law, and international political economy, Professor Mingst has conducted research in Western Europe, West Africa, and Yugoslavia. She is the author or editor of seven books and numerous academic articles, and has frequently taught the introductory international relations course.

Heather Elko McKibben

Heather Elko McKibben is an associate professor in the department of political science at the University of California, Davis. In her research, Professor McKibben is interested in understanding when, why and how different countries negotiate with each other. When and why will countries come to the negotiating table to resolve problems instead of resorting to more coercive measures? What types of strategies do they use in those negotiations, and why do those strategies differ from country to country and negotiation to negotiation? When and why will countries be able to reach cooperative agreements, and what are the resulting agreements likely to look like? Examining international negotiations in a wide variety of settings, Professor McKibben seeks to answer these types of questions.

What Instructors are Saying

“This textbook provides a great introduction to both IR theory, as well as the historical development of the international system and contemporary challenges. It incorporates anecdotes and mini-case studies that help bring the material alive. I would recommend this text because it makes IR theory more accessible and relevant by using theoretical frameworks to explain contemporary challenges. It is a great introductory text that will provide students with the foundational knowledge they need to read denser, more scholarly works. It also comes with good online materials, including the InQuizitive platform for students who are seeking extra review and practice.”

—Amy Hamblin, Contra Costa College

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