GV439      Half Unit
Government and Politics in Central and Eastern Europe

This information is for the 2016/17 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Vesselin Dimitrov CON 3.06


This course is available on the MSc in Comparative Politics, MSc in Conflict Studies, MSc in EU Politics, MSc in EU Politics (LSE and Sciences Po), MSc in European Studies (Research), MSc in European Studies: Ideas, Ideologies and Identities and MSc in European Studies: Ideas, Ideologies and Identities (LSE and Sciences Po). This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

Course content

The course provides an analytical assessment of the transition from communism to liberal democracy in Central and Eastern Europe and integration with the European Union, including the Eurozone. It offers an in-depth analysis of institutions, party systems, government and public administration, nationalism, and EU integration, including the Eurozone. Topics covered include: The Communist system. Constitution-making and the development of democratic party systems. Reform of executive institutions and public administration. (Mis)management of ethnic conflict: the case of Yugoslavia. Integration with the European Union, including the Eurozone.


10 hours of lectures and 20 hours of seminars in the LT. 2 hours of seminars in the ST.

There will be a reading week in Week 6 of the LT for private study and formative/summative assessment preparation.

Formative coursework

Students are required to produce two essays.

Indicative reading

V Dimitrov, K H Goetz and H Wollmann, Governing after Communism: Institutions and Policymaking; A Przeworski, Democracy and the Market; H Grabbe, The EU's Transformative Power: Europeanization through Conditionality in Central and Eastern Europe; J Elster et al, Institutional Design in Post-Communist Societies; R Taras (Ed), Postcommunist Presidents; R Crampton, Eastern Europe in the Twentieth Century, 2nd edn; G Schopflin, Politics in Eastern Europe; S White, J Batt & P Lewis (Eds), Developments in Central and East European Politics 3.


Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours) in the main exam period.

Student performance results

(2012/13 - 2014/15 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 28.9
Merit 68.9
Pass 2.2
Fail 0

Key facts

Department: Government

Total students 2015/16: 22

Average class size 2015/16: 11

Controlled access 2015/16: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Leadership
  • Self-management
  • Team working
  • Problem solving
  • Application of information skills
  • Communication
  • Application of numeracy skills
  • Specialist skills