EU Political Systems in a Comparative Perspective

Sylvia KritzingerJuly 29 – August 94 ECTS credits


This course familiarizes students with the major theoretical, empirical and substantive issues in contemporary European politics. First, the course examines the different governmental institutions, electoral systems and party systems across the member states of the European Union and their impact on political processes and the society. Second, it focuses on the different social cleavages in these political systems and their changes over time. Third, the course analyzes the recent electoral behavior of the European electorate both in national and European Parliament elections and its repercussions on European party systems. The course aims at deepening the understanding of the main debates in contemporary European politics using a comparative approach.

Requirements: Performance will be assessed on the basis of attendance and participation in class discussions (20%), a role play taking different party positions and government negotiations into account (40%) and a written final exam (40%).