Universiteit Leiden

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Global Affairs

About this minor

In the minor Global Affairs, students will explore the practical side of International Relations from a variety of perspectives, such as diplomacy, geo-economics, geopolitics, international organizations, international security, and global governance.


The minor consists of 7 courses of 5 ECTS each and takes place during the first semester. The semester is divided into two blocks of eight weeks each. In every block, you need to follow three courses.

In block 2 there are 4 courses offered, you need to choose 3.
All courses in block 1 are mandatory.

This minor is a consistent package of courses designed to help you build your knowledge in a logical and connected way. It is not possible to follow single courses and the minor needs to be completed in one academic year. If you have previously followed the minor and have not completed it, please contact the coordinator well in advance.

It is possible to register for a 15 EC semi-minor consisting of the three courses offered in block 1, Gateway to Global Affairs, War and Media and The EU as an external Power. Please indicate this to the minor coordinator so that we know how many students we can expect in block 2.

It explores and seeks to place in perspective the rapid changes in the international environment at a variety of levels. In doing so, it asks questions like:

  • What are the consequences of the weakening of the liberal international order and increasing multipolarity for global governance institutions?
  • What is the role of the EU in the context of a shifting international environment?
  • Why is it so difficult to successfully apply power instruments?
  • What role does the media play in internationalized conflicts?
  • What is the impact of shifts in geo-economical governance and what do they mean for international relations?
  • What will increasing tensions between superpowers mean for conflict resolution?
  • How can diplomacy and international cooperation contribute to the mitigation of climate change?
  • What is the role of terrorism in global affairs and what can we do to counter it?

By answering questions such as these, the minor aims to offer students a balanced package of courses in which theory and practice in this extended field of international relations are combined. The lecturers will confront students with their academic knowledge and their practical experiences.

BSc Security Studies

Are you a BSc Security Studies student and are you interested in the minor Global Affairs? If so, you are not allowed to take part in the course Terrorism and Counterterrorism since the content is similar, fully or in part, to compulsory components of the BaSS programme. Even without this course, it remains possible to obtain 30 EC's within the minor Global Affairs.

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