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Comparative Analysis of Political Systems


Admission requirements

Basic knowledge of Political Science is recommended to take this course. This implies that students have followed at least 10 EC of courses on government and politics.


This course builds on the themes discussed in Introduction to Political Science and Introduction to Comparative Politics. The core concepts and theories in the field of comparative politics are analysed and discussed within the context of specific European and non-European case studies. The main focus will be on the institutional architecture of political systems and the relevant political cleavages, like class, ideology, ethnicity and religion. Topics covered include state-building, nation-building, economic development, ethnic politics, party structures, electoral politics and government formation.

Course objectives

Objective 1: General introduction to the study of comparative politics with a global and long-term view.
Objective 2: The core concepts of the field are analysed within the context of informative case-studies.

Mode of instruction


Course load

Total course load for the course is: 5 EC

Students retaking this course from last academic year will need to do an additional assignment to complete the 10EC

Assessment method

Final written exam

First opportunity for an exam: Thursday 21 December 2017, 13.00-16.00 at the USC

Second opportunity for an exam: Thursday 25 January 2018, 13.00-16.00 at the USC


Students can find the course syllabus and additional course materials on Blackboard.

Reading list

  • Patrick O’Neil, Karl Fields, and Don Share (2015). Cases in Comparative Politics. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 5th ed.

  • Other reading materials will be available via Blackboard or in the library.



Students need to register for lectures in uSis. It is not possible to take a course without a valid registration. Please consult the course registration website for information on registration periods and further instructions.

Minor students, please see the tab meer info for information on how to apply.

Assessment method

Students are not automatically registered for exams. They can register themselves in uSis until 10 calendar days before the exam date at the latest. Students who are not registered will not be permitted to take the exam. More information can be found on the exam registration website.

Registration Exchange and Study Abroad students

Exchange and Study Abroad students, please see the Prospective students website for information on how to apply.