Universiteit Leiden

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European Union Studies (MA)

The Master’s in European Union Studies at Leiden University offers students an opportunity to study the EU from multiple disciplinary perspectives.

Master International Relations at Leiden University

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Why study European Union Studies at Leiden University?

The specialisation in European Union Studies examines the European Union through theories and concepts from various disciplines, such as history, economics, political science, and law. You will learn how to explore and better understand the core concerns of the European Union, an increasingly complex and fascinating political and socio-economic landscape. In addition, you will study the context in which the European Union operates and its relations with the rest of the world. 

The courses are taught by academics as well as practitioners. This enables you to gain the latest academic and practical insights in politics, government, and other affiliated organisations. Another highlight of the programme is a three-day trip to Brussels, where you will visit EU institutions, member states’ representatives, and lobby groups. During your studies, you will also benefit from the close contacts between the university and (inter)national government institutions in the Hague, as well as the great amount of knowledge on area studies at Leiden University.

Learn more about the study programme

Taking Brussels by storm – the EUS 2023 study trip

Every autumn EUS students take the train down to our southern neighbours to learn the secrets of European Union institutions. They get to hear tips about landing a job in Brussels, learn things about EU institutions that cannot be found in the textbooks, meet important contacts, and get inspiration for their thesis topics. Read more.

EU Seminar series

Alongside the regular study programme, students of the specialisation in European Union Studies can also attend EU seminars with practitioners from various backgrounds. This is a great opportunity to learn more about the different perspectives on the challenges the European Union is facing and to become familiar with day-to-day work of European institutions. Recent speakers have included Roberta Metsola MEP, the President of the European Parliament, and Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, formerly the Secretary General of NATO (2004-09) and Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs (2002-03). Learn more about the EU seminar series.

What are your career prospects?

This Master's prepares you for a wide range of roles in almost every sector of the job market. Our graduates work at different types of organisations, such as research institutes, international organisations, government bodies, NGOs and academia. Jobs include policy advisor, researcher, coordinator and advocate.

Find out more about the career prospects

Is European Union Studies the programme for you?

Are you interested in international relations? Do you want to know everything about the inner workings of the European Union? Then the specialisation in European Union Studies at Leiden University is the right Master's programme for you. Find out if you are eligible for this Master's programme by checking the admission requirements.

Check the admission requirements

Europe Hub

Leiden University’s new Europe Hub is an interdisciplinary platform that showcases the university’s research and teaching expertise and capacities on the challenges that Europe faces, both at home and abroad. It draws upon scholars employed in various faculties - in particular the Faculty of Humanities (FGW), Faculty of Governance and Global Affairs (FGGA), Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FSW), and the Leiden Law School (FdR). Learn more about Leiden University's Europe Hub.

Do a second MA at Johns Hopkins SAIS Europe: School of Advanced International Studies

Due to a special agreement, students with a Leiden MA degree in International Relations can earn a second degree at the European Campus of Johns Hopkins University SAIS in Bologna, Italy. Successful applicants gain access to the second year of the research focused Master of Arts in International Affairs (MAIA) and will be given a full year’s credit towards this two-year MA. The programme is research-orientated and allows students to personalise their curriculum and focus on the contemporary issues in international affairs aligned with their career interests. The courses offered at SAIS Europe emphasise economics, political science, history and foreign language proficiency, providing a cross-disciplinary approach.

Chat with a student

Do you have a question about student life in Leiden, studying at Leiden University, or do you want more information about the International Relations master's programme?

Chat with a current student for answers to your questions!

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