Before BISA: the British Coordinating Committee for International Studies, S.H. Bailey, and the Bailey Conferences

  • Barry BuzanEmail author
Original Article


The story of how International Relations in Britain was organised before the setting up of BISA in 1975 has been largely forgotten. This paper recovers that history and shows that it links directly back to the interwar years, when the British Coordinating Committee for International Studies was set up as part of the League of Nations-linked International Studies Conferences. S.H. Bailey, a long-forgotten junior scholar at the LSE, almost single-handedly pioneered what was after 1945 to become the norm of national academic associations and conferences for IR.


S.H. Bailey British Coordinating Committee for International Studies British International Studies Association International Studies Conference Susan Strange 



For various help with finding and interpreting the facts, contributing their memories and understandings, and commenting on drafts, I would like to thank David Armstrong, Michael Banks, Chris Brown, Tim Dunne, Nat Dyer, John Groom, Barry Jones, Alan James, George Lawson, David Long, Cornelia Navari, Michael Riemens, John Simpson, Nicholas Sims, Jack Spence, Trevor Taylor, Brunello Vigezzi, and Peter Wilson. Particular thanks to Mick Cox both for comments, and for sharing his expertise on, and access to, the LSE archives. For excellent help with finding and using the relevant archives, I would also like to thank David Bates and his colleagues at Chatham House, and Anna Towlson and her colleagues at the LSE Archives.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Limited 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.London School of Economics and Political ScienceLondonUK

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