The disintegration and questioning of global governance structures and a re-orientation toward national politics combined with the spread of technological innovations such as big data, social media, and phenomena like fake news, populism, or questions of global health policies make it necessary for the introduction of new methods of inquiry and the adaptation of established methods in Foreign Policy Analysis (FPA). This accessible handbook offers concise chapters from expert international contributors covering a diverse range of new and established FPA methods. Embracing methodological pluralism and a belief in the value of an open discussion about methods’ assumptions and diverging positions, it provides new, state-of-the-art research approaches, as well as introductions to a range of established methods. Each chapter follows the same approach, introducing the method and its development, discussing strengths, requirements, limitations, and potential pitfalls while illustrating the method’s application using examples from empirical research. Embracing methodological pluralism and problem-oriented research that engages with real-world questions, the authors examine quantitative and qualitative traditions, rationalist and interpretivist perspectives, as well as different substantive backgrounds. The book will be of interest to a wide range of scholars and students in global politics, foreign policy, and methods-related classes across the social sciences.

Chapters 4, 25 and 32 of this book are available for free in PDF format as Open Access from the individual product page at www.routledge.com. It has been made available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives 4.0 license.

part I|18 pages


chapter 1|16 pages

Methods of Foreign Policy Analysis

Charting Ground, Engaging Traditions, and Opening Up Boundaries

part II|79 pages

Perspectives on Foreign Policy

chapter 3|12 pages


chapter 4|16 pages

Norms and Norm Contestation

chapter 5|15 pages


chapter 6|16 pages

Political Geography

part III|85 pages

Language and Interpretive Methods

chapter 8|16 pages

Narrative Analysis

chapter 9|17 pages

Frame Analysis

chapter 10|18 pages

Visual Analysis

chapter 11|16 pages

Emotion Discourse Analysis

part IV|103 pages

Psychology, Roles, and Leaders

chapter 12|15 pages

Role Theory

chapter 14|20 pages

Measuring Perceptions

Combining Low and High Inference Approaches to Data Analysis in International Political Communication

chapter 15|17 pages

Leadership Trait Analysis

chapter 17|19 pages

Groupthink, Polythink, and Con-Div

Identifying Group Decision-Making Dynamics

part V|114 pages

Quantitative and Comparative Approaches

chapter 18|15 pages

Comparative Foreign Policy

chapter 20|17 pages

Statistical Analysis

chapter 21|16 pages

Experimental Methods

chapter 22|16 pages

Game Theory

chapter 23|15 pages

Public Opinion Surveys

chapter 24|18 pages

Qualitative Comparative Analysis

part VI|79 pages

Qualitative Methods and Historical Approaches

chapter 25|16 pages

Process Tracing

An Analyticist Approach

chapter 26|14 pages


chapter 27|15 pages

Historical Analysis

chapter 28|13 pages

Oral History

chapter 29|19 pages

Archival Research

part VII|83 pages

New Technology, Social Media, and Networks

chapter 30|17 pages

Big Data Analysis

chapter 31|14 pages

Analyzing Twitter

chapter 32|20 pages

Discourse Network Analysis

chapter 33|15 pages

Text as Data

chapter 34|15 pages

Conflict Event Data