Dr Vassilios Paipais, Lecturer


Vassilios earned his PhD from the London School of Economics and Political Science. He holds an undergraduate degree in Law (Aristotle University of Thessaloniki), an MA in International Relations and Strategic Studies (Panteion University, Athens) and an MRes in International Relations (LSE).

He has also been awarded a Post-Graduate Certificate in Higher Education (PGCertHE) and he is a Higher Education Academy Fellow. He is currently programme coordinator for International Political Theory.

Research areas

Vassilios’ research and output stretch across three main research areas:

 1. Approaches to Ontology and the Political in International Political Thought and the role and function of critique in world politics.

He is the author of Political Ontology and International Political Thought: Voiding A Pluralist World, (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016). This monograph explores the challenges and impasses facing liberal, post-liberal, dialogic and agonistic discourses of pluralism in IPT from the perspective of a post-foundational nihilist ontology.

 2. The political-theological dimension in world politics and the meaning and significance of the messianic as a political category.

He is currently publishing papers on that project in view of producing a full monograph on messianism as a political category and an edited book on Political Theologies of the International.

 3. Research project: ‘Euro Crisis in the Press’.

The project is an interdisciplinary comparative research study on the politics of public discourses around the European crisis across Eurozone countries. He is co-editor of the LSE blog Euro Crisis in the Press and an Associate to the Civil Society and Human Security Research Unit at the LSE. Examples of Vassilios' blog entries can be found on the Euro Crisis in the Press blog. 

He is a former co-Convenor (2007-2010) of CRIPT (Contemporary Research in International Political Theory) which is a BISA (British International Studies Association) working group.




  • (2018) ‘Introduction: Political Theologies of the International: bringing theology back in’, Journal of International Relations and Development (special issue, forthcoming)
  • (2017) ‘Introduction: Critical Exchange: Democracy, Critique and the Ontological Turn’ (with Mihaela Mihai and Mathias Thaler), Contemporary Political Theory, vol. 16, no. 6.
  • (2017) ‘Towards a Formal Political Ontology’, Contemporary Political Theory, vol. 16, no. 6.
  • (2016) 'First Image Revisited: Human Nature, Original Sin and International Relations', Journal of International Relations and Development (advance online publication)
  • (2016) 'The Promise of Ontology: Nihilism for a Pluralist World', Millennium: Journal of International Studies, vol. 45, no. 1: 64-71
  • (2016) ‘Overcoming ‘Gnosticism’? Realism as Political Theology’, Cambridge Review of International Affairs, vol. 29, no. 4: 1603-1623
  • (2014) ‘Between Politics and The Political: reading Hans J. Morgenthau’s double critique of depoliticisation’, Millennium: Journal of International Studies, vol. 42, no. 2: 354-375
  • (2013) ‘Necessary Fiction: Realism’s Tragic Theology’, International Politics, vol. 50, no. 6: 846-862
  • (2011) ‘Self and Other in Critical International Theory: Assimilation, Incommensurability and the Paradox of Critique’, Review of International Studies, vol. 37, no.1: 121-140.

Book reviews


  • (2017), ‘Review of Winfried Schroeder (ed.), Reading between the lines – Leo Strauss and the history of early modern philosophy’, Hobbes Studies, vol. 30, no. 1: 116-120
  • (2015) ‘Review of Madeleine Fagan, Ethics and Politics After Poststructuralism: Levinas, Derrida, Nancy’, Contemporary Political Theory, vol. 14(2): e216-e219.




  • IR5601 Research in International Relations
  • IR5414 Politics After the 'Death of God': Evil and Tragedy in Modern Politics
  • IR5401 Texts in International Political Theory (Convener)
  • SS5102 Philosophy and Methodology of the Social Sciences (Convener)
  • IR4560 Faith, Politics and War: The Augustinian Tradition in International Relations
  • IR3071 Realism in International Relations
  • IR2005 Theories of International Relations
  • IR1005 Introduction to International Relations

Research students

  • Tim Zajontz (co-supervisor)
  • Flaminia Incecchi (co-supervisor)

PhD supervision topics

  • International Relations Theory
  • Critical International Theory
  • Ontology and World Politics
  • Political Theology of the International
  • Philosophy of Science in IR
  • Realism in IR
  • Christian Realism
  • Nihilism
  • Messianism
  • Continental Political Thought (post-Nietzschean political philosophy)

Further information


  • Associate to the Centre of Global Constitutionalism, University of St Andrews
  • Associate to the Civil Society and Human Security Research Unit at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).


  • 2014 Russell Trust Development Award (£2,000).

Editorial positions