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Strategic Studies



This course introduces the students to the main concepts, theories and debates in the field of strategic studies. It will address the history of strategic thought going back to the nineteenth century. It aims to, furthermore, elaborate on the main ideas on the causes and conduct of war and the frameworks and theories that have been developed to understand and dissect the versatile phenomenon of war in the modern period.

Course objectives

At the end of this course, students will be able to:

  • Reproduce knowledge about the field of strategic studies, its history, theories and practices by oral and written transmission

  • Define and interpret strategy in the broadest sense of the meaning

  • Analyze contemporary strategic challenges by using insights from the field of strategic studies

Mode of instruction

Interactive lectures

Course load

Total course load for the course 5 EC/ 140 hours
-Hours spent on attending lectures: 14 hours
-Time for studying the compulsory literature: 123 hours

  • Exam: 3 hours

Assessment method

Written exam


Thursdays 11.15 - 13.00, from 31/10/2019 - 19/12/2019



Students can find the course syllabus and additional course materials on Blackboard. Students are advised to enroll on Blackboard before the start of the course.

Reading list

  • Baylis, J., Wirtz, J.J., and Gray, C.S. (2019, 6th edition) Strategy in the Contemporary World. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

  • Thomas Mahnken and Joseph Maiolo (eds.) (2014). Strategic Studies: A Reader. London: Routledge 2014.

Admission requirements



Students need to register for lectures and work group sessions 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.

Registration Exchange and Study Abroad students

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

Please note that there is very limited capacity for this course