Finland, Helsinki

Challenges of Democratic Development in Eastern Europe

when 4 August 2015 - 20 August 2015
duration 3 weeks
credits 6 ECTS
fee EUR 640

This course offers an overview of the current challenges of social and political development in Eastern Europe. Taught by a group of area studies experts in history, political science, media studies and sociology, the course views Eastern Europe as including the former Eastern Bloc countries, i.e., the Baltic states, East Central and Southeastern Europe, the Balkans and Ukraine. Russia is discussed only as a reference point to the area of our concern: there won’t be any specific lectures on Russian developments.

The course provides students with new, multidisciplinary approaches to the study of politics and society with a focus on issues that hinder democratic conduct. Addressed will be questions of nationalism, populism, corruption, authoritarian rule, poverty, the Roma situation, politics of history, cultural policy, civil society and environmental problems. In order to get a better grasp of Eastern European challenges in today’s globalised world, the course offers insights into recent history and post-communist transition.

Course leader

Ms. Eeva Korteniemi

Target group

The course is designed for advanced undergraduates or Master's level students of humanities and social sciences.

Course aim

The students will gain a broad overview of current societal and political developments in the region. The purpose is also to discuss critically the concept of democracy, which is sometimes understood normatively. The students will be acquainted with new multidisciplinary approaches and innovative pedagogical methods to understand the complexity of politics and society in this area. The course will also provide supplemental information for students looking to specialise in subjects and fields of research covered by the course. Ongoing cutting-edge research projects, carried out at the University of Helsinki, will be introduced by visits to several research centres.

Fee info

EUR 640: This course fee applies to degree and PhD students who pay the fee before June 1, 2015.