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Great Debates in Political Science - Fall


Great Debates

Goal 1: The course will introduce students to several recent major debates in political science both in terms of their substance and in terms of the different standards of empirical evidence used in the debates.
Goal 2: The course will make students aware of the different theoretical and methodological approaches to the academic study of major issues in political science.


This course is centered around three influential “great debates” in political science: cultural identity and international relations, social capital and political participation, and consociational democracy and group conflict. Each debate is introduced by reading a key book on it and is followed up by a discussion of its various aspects through several examples of research on the original debate. Students will learn to understand particular issues from several perspectives, including different theoretical and methodological approaches and themselves apply political science concepts to analyses the issues at hand.

Study Material:

Books: Arend Lijphart, Democracy in Plural Societies; John Mearsheimer, Tragedy of Great Power Politics and Robert D Putnam, Bowling Alone (any editions)
Articles: to be assigned in the syllabus.


A final exam.


See Preliminay Info

Registration for exams

Studenst register themselvers in uSis for the final exam and retake; registrations is possible from 100 days upto and including 10 days prior to the exam date.

First opportunity for a written exam: Monday 22 October 2018, 09:00-12:00h in the University Sports Centre
Second opportunity for a written exam: Monday 21 January 2019, 13:30-16:30 in the University Sports Centre



Please note that there will be lectures on:
3 September 13.00-15.00
10 September 13.00-15.00
24 September 13.00-15.00
8 October 13.00-15.00

and workgroups (WG1 = Monday 13.00-15.00, WG2 = Monday 15.00-17.00, WG3 = Tuesday 09.00-11.00, WG4 = Tuesday 11.00-13.00) on:
17 & 18 September
1 & 2 October
15 & 16 October