Master in Political Sciences-International Relations

The Master in Political Science – specialization International Politics offers a solid knowledge and insight base with regards to contemporary world politics. This also includes international law and Belgian foreign policy. Next to that, students are welcomed to introduce their own accents, for example international economy, international energy politics, the European Union, the Global South, or international law. The program also allows the possibility of internships, societal fieldwork or international exchanges.

This Master is meant to be a solid preparation for the Belgian diplomatic exam.

The educational program offers an extensive range of optional subjects, of which three have to be chosen. It is recommended to take into account the subject of your master’s thesis when picking your subjects. It is also an advantage if you make a cluster with regards to content, with subjects that are closely related but complementary, such as:

  • International political economy + Economic globalization
  • European Common Foreign and Security Policy + European foreign policy + decision-making in the EU
  • Politics of conflict + politics of development

Please not that the language of instruction is Dutch. We offer some courses in English, but not a full masters program.

The full program can be found in the study guide , but we would like to introduce some English-taught courses organised by GIIS staff on this page.

Global Energy Politics

Ever since the Industrial Revolution, energy has been a key driver of world politics and every shift in global energy patterns has brought changes in international relations. This specialized course aims to introduce students to the history and functioning of major energy markets (oil, gas and electricity), the geopolitics of energy security, and the challenges and ramifications of efforts to decarbonize our economies. Next to attending the lectures, students should write an essay and participate in an in-class simulation exercise.

European Common Foreign and Security Policy

The subject covers the EU’s development into a global strategic player. The EU has long been a world player in trade and development cooperation and is increasingly emerging as one in diplomacy and defence. Hence the subject’s focus on European Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP). The subject places the EU’s strategic vision in its political and conceptual context and analyses its main tenets. It then takes a critical look at the EU’s implementation of the ambitious goals it has set itself. The topics covered in this course, focusing on the area of ECFSP and the security dimension, are: institutions and mechanisms, the European Neighbourliness Policy, multilateralism and the UN, military and civil capabilities and operations, relations with NATO and the US, strategic partnerships, with the emphasis on China.