The month of April has seen a couple of rewrites of my dissertation proposal and the addition of a PowerPoint presentation to accompany it. After getting a couple of new sets of eyes on my work, it looks like it will be necessary to scale my ambitions back a bit. Currently, my intention is to write a historical analysis of the Cooperative Threat Reduction Program using a case study approach. I have three cases in mind and would explore them using bureaucratic politics as the method of analysis with the rational actor model as the foil. One of the professors I asked suggested that the project, while very interesting, might be a bit ambitious. He said analysis of this sort lends itself to depth more than breadth and exploring three cases could very well take longer than tenable to complete. He suggested choosing one of the case studies and exploring it in depth instead. So I’m going to write an executive summary reflecting this modified approach and submit it to my chair to see if he thinks it’s doable.
I’ve also worked to complete my dissertation committee. I’ve had preliminary discussions with a couple of professors to gauge their level of interest and availability. I will continue the conversation with them over the next several weeks to see if I can stay on track to defend my proposal by the end of August.
That’s all for now – see you at the next update!