office hours

  • Tues/Thurs: 9:00 - 10:00 and 3:45 - 5:00
  • and by appointment


International and Comparative Politics

European politics


Robert Goeckel

Professor of

Political Science & International Relations

Welles Hall 3E
1 College Circle
Geneseo, NY 14454

Robert Goeckel has been a member of the Geneseo faculty since 1982.

Faculty Information


  • Ph.D: Harvard University, Government
  • MPP: The University of Michigan, Public Policy
  • A.B.: The University of Michigan, Political Science w/ High Honors Michigan

Research Interests

The relationship between church and state, as well as the role of religion and politics, particularly during the Communist period.

Publications and Professional Activities

  • The Relations between State and Church in the GDR: Ten Years of Anglo-American Studies, Staat und Kirchen in der DDR. Zum Stand der zeithistorischen und sozialwissenschaftlichen Forschung, Horst Daehn and Joachim Heise, eds., Peter Lang Verlag, Frankfurt/M and Berlin, 2003
  • American Church Advocacy of Religious Rights in East Germany: The Legacy of the Past for the Present, Protecting the Human Rights of Religious Minorities in Eastern Europe, ed. Peter Danchin and Elizabeth Cole, NY: Columbia University Press, 2002
  • US-German Church Relations, 1968-1990, Germany and the US in the Era of the Cold War, 1945-1990, ed. Detlef Juncker, NY and Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004
  • The Baltic Churches and the Liberalization Process, The Politics of Religion in Russia and the New States of Eurasia, ed. Michael Bourdeaux, Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, 1995
  • The Lutheran Church and the East German State: Political Conflict and Change under Ulbricht and Honecker, Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1990
  • The Luther Anniversary in East Germany, World Politics v. 37, n. 1 (October 1984)
Spring 2016 Classes

PLSC 246:
S/U.S. Foreign Policy

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    An examination of the international and domestic setting of US foreign policy, placing contemporary policy in the context of US traditions. The role of actors in the policy-making process will be anal
    yzed, along with problems and choices confronting the US in the post-Cold War world. Individual crises and case studies may be used to illustrate decision-making processes. Offered once yearly
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PLSC 345:
Theories-International Relatns

    An exploration of the theoretical approaches to understanding international relations and to explaining outcomes in international relations. The course addresses the dimensions and requirements of goo
    d theory. Theoretical approaches employed include realism, interdependence and integration, national values and domestic structure, bureaucratic politics and transnational relations, dependency and Marxist approaches, and psychological approaches. These theoretical approaches address historical and contemporary cases. Prerequisites: PLSC 120, PLSC 140, PLSC 246, senior standing, and permission of instructor.
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PLSC 353:

    The course will investigate the role of religion and churches in contemporary Europe, East and West, focusing on the different models of church-state relations ? separation, establishment and pluralis
    m ? and the churches as political actors. The role of Catholic, Protestant and Orthodox churches in the context of communism, democratization and Europeanization since 1991 will be analyzed. Historical, transnational, sociological and attitudinal/behavioral aspects of religion will be addressed, including the challenge of integrating Islam into contemporary Europe. Prerequisites: PLSC 120 or 140. Offered every other year.
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