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Cyber Security Governance Essentials

The new minor 'Cyber Security Governance Essentials' will start in September 2021. Third year bachelor students of The Leiden Institute of Advanced Computer Science (LIACS) and of the BSc Security Studies of the Institute of Security and Global Affairs (ISGA) who would like to deepen their knowledge and skills in Cyber Security Governance can choose this new minor.

Cyber Security Governance Essentials is developed to provide students from LIACS and ISGA with an interest in cybersecurity challenges with a mixture of technical and governance knowledge to set them on a path towards specializing in cybersecurity. 

What is the Cyber Security Governance Essentials about?

The minor Cyber Security Governance Essentials is a set of five courses that teaches students (1) a set of technical fundamentals of cyberspace and cybersecurity, and (2) a collection of challenges with respect to the governance of cyberspace and cybersecurity.

Cyberspace has become one of the backbones of our global economy and of modern-day societies. Almost everything we do in our everyday lives, ranging from communication and media consumption to travel and leisure, and from work to school is facilitated by, or even relies on digital, networked technologies. What’s more, airplanes couldn’t fly anymore, factories could no longer produce products, and hospitals couldn’t treat patients without these technologies anymore. Because of our dependence on cyberspace it is vital that data, information and networks are secure. Information and communications must be properly protected, networks must be stable, and data and information must be available at all times. But how do we ensure that this is so? To answer this question, we must first delve into the fundamentals of cyberspace itself. What is cyberspace and on which technical foundations is it built? How do networks operate? What are the key techniques en technologies used to increase security in cyberspace?

But cybersecurity is more than a technical challenge alone. We must also understand some of the key challenges for governments and organisations to tackle cybersecurity challenges. Governance of cybersecurity is a crucial aspect of a secure cyberspace as well. The last two courses of Cyber Security Essentials, therefore, focus on particular governance aspects of cyberspace and cybersecurity.

What kind of students are you looking for?

We are looking for students with an interest in socio-technical challenges who want to delve into the technical and governance aspects of cyberspace in general and cybersecurity in particular.

Some courses require knowledge/understanding of mathematics, so students without affinity with the latter are advised not to enroll. No prior knowledge of law, public administration and governance is required.

For students who have only 15 EC of elective space in their program, there is the option to follow a 3 EC variant of Introduction to Cyber Security, Basic Programming in Python (6 EC) and Essentials of Computing Systems (6 EC). Students who choose this package and have basic programming experience in Python can follow the course Internet Governance (6 EC) instead of Basic Programming in Python (6EC). This optional package requires presence for both block 1 and 2 of the Fall semester.

What skills do you learn during this course? And how can you use these skills in daily life?

Students will learn a set of fundamentals from computer science. This may help them understand better how the digital technologies that we all use in daily life work. Students will also learn the fundamentals of cyberspace governance. This may help them understand better how governments, businesses and other organizations seek to manage (challenges surrounding) cyberspace.


You can apply for this minor via uSis (Usiscode: 4000MCSGEN Study activity: 1051).  The application period is 3 May 13:00 hrs. up to and including 15 July 2021. 
The minor is open to all students. However, students from a computer science related discipline cannot be admitted to the minor.

There are 100 places available and these are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis (with a waiting list). So make sure to apply on time!

Also remember to cancel your place if you decide not to follow this set of courses. This will allow another student to take your place.


Do you have questions about the content of Cyber Security Governance Essentials? Please send an e-mail to minorCSGE@liacs.leidenuniv.nl 

Yoy will find more information about this minor on the e-study guide.


Block 1

Block 2

Above you will find 4 courses, the fifth course is: Essentials of Computing Systems, this course will be added to the list as soon as possible. For information regarding the course and the course outline, please look at last year's course description in the e-prospectus.

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