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Thesis Seminar Nederlandse Politiek - Spring 2018 CdH



Objective: 1. To deepen the understanding of theories and methods related to research on the theme of the Master Specialisation.
Objective: 2. Applying them to a specific topic as part of the student’s Master thesis project.


Students choose (one of) the thesis seminar(s) offered within their specialisation. It is strongly recommended that students start thinking about the topic of their thesis before the start of the classes. Attendance is compulsory for all classes. Detailed information about the study material and the writing process can be found on Blackboard.

General Introduction Meeting

On Wednesday 6 December 2017 there will be a general introduction meeting from 13.00-14.00h in room 3.16 at Wijnhaven, in which the instructors will explain and discuss the general thesis seminar procedures and expectations and students can ask questions about the thesis seminars.

Thesis Seminar Nederlandse Politiek - Koole (act. code 1920)

Dutch Political Institutions: origin, functioning, and legitimacy

This thesis seminar departs from the perennial question: what gives rulers the right to rule? From this perspective of political legitimacy Dutch political institutions will be analyzed. How were institutions legitimized when they were founded? How do they function today? Did developments in between the founding of institutes and today (like the Europeanisation of the national state) alter the way they are legitimized today? The thesis seminar takes historical institutionalism as the general approach to tackle these questions. The study of (historical) Dutch political texts, especially parliamentary proceedings, is essential for answering these questions (se example below). Therefore, students must also be able to read Dutch.
The broad theme of the seminar allows students to concentrate their own research on one or more institutions, varying from formal organizations of the Dutch state (such as parliament, the government, the judiciary, the Council of State, the Central Bank) to other institutions (such as political parties, the poldermodel, independent agencies, the electoral system, the decentralized unitary state), as long as the research focusses on their origin, present-day-functioning and legitimization.
In the first part of the seminar, students will familiarize themselves with theories and concepts of political legitimacy as well as with a general overview of Dutch political institutions (next to the book on Dutch parliament, which was studied during the core seminar in block I; students are supposed to be familiar with its contents), in order to be able to draft a research proposal. After the approval of the proposal, students will be supervised individually while they write their thesis.
Language of instruction: Dutch.

Additional Information

Please note that for some seminars there will be no additional substantive readings than the ones discussed in the courses they build on.


Registration in uSis for one thesis seminar is possible from Monday 18 December 2017 10.00 hrs until 28 December 10.00 hrs.
Registration is open for students that started their Master in one of the Political Science specialisations, in September 2017. All other students should contact the exam committee to request permission to take this thesis seminar. Students can take the thesis seminar only once in their academic year.


Research Proposal
The research proposal includes a problem statement, theoretical foundation, conceptualization as well as a sound explanation of the methods and techniques for data collection and analysis.The proposal must be approved by the supervisor and a second reader. The second reader will be designated by the Director of Studies. Please note that teachers are not obliged to provide thesis supervision if the proposal is not approved.

Master Thesis

The MSc thesis needs to comply with high standards of academic research. The thesis must be between 8.000 and 10.000 words, including tables, footnotes and bibliography. The thesis evaluation form with the evaluation criteria will be published on Blackboard.

Students that drop or fail the course have to retake the complete thesis seminar (in the 2nd semester of the next academic year). Students should contact the Exam Committee if they are unable to complete the master thesis by the deadline due to circumstances beyond their control.

Time Table MSc Thesis Seminar Spring semester 2017/2018