What Kind of Europe? Crisis, Reform and the International Role of the European Union

  • Summer schools
  • Department of International Relations
  • Application code SS-IR270
  • Starting TBC
  • Short course: Closed
  • Location: Houghton Street, London

Please note: This course will not be running as part of the 2021 programme. However, you may be interested in our confirmed courses.

This course explores the political dynamics of European integration since 1945, putting an emphasis on the tension between 'deepening' and 'widening' and the implications of these process on the effectiveness of the EU domestically and internationally. It combines an overview of recent research on EU institutions and policy-making with an in-depth study of current conceptual and policy debates in selected EU policy areas. In doing so, the course also examines some of the important political and economic reform pressures the EU and individual EU members face.

Session: TBC
Dates: TBC
Lecturers: Dr Spyros EconomidesDr Ulrich Sedelmeier and Dr Eiko Thielemann


Programme details

Key facts

Level: 200 level. Read more information on levels in our FAQs

Fees:  Please see Fees and payments

Lectures: 36 hours 

Classes: 18 hours

Assessment*: One examination and one essay

Typical credit**: 3-4 credits (US) 7.5 ECTS points (EU)

*Assessment is optional

**You will need to check with your home institution

For more information on exams and credit, read Teaching and assessment


Some basic knowledge about the European Union and social sciences. The course is of particular interest to students interested in politics and international relations including international political economy, European studies and law.

Programme structure

  • The institutional and legal foundations of European integration
  • The making, set-backs and future of the European constitution
  • Case studies in key policy areas, such as: economic & monetary union, mobility & free movement, asylum and immigration ('Fortress Europe'), etc.
  • The record and prospects of past and future rounds of enlargement
  • The evolving role of the EU as a foreign policy actor

Course outcomes

Students who have successfully completed this course should have a deeper understanding of:

  • The institutional set-up of the European Union and its evolution over time
  • The process of EU policy-making in different sectors;
  • A range of topical EU policy area currently under discussion, relating to issues such as migration, cohesion and agricultural policy, the environment, the Single Market and EMU, the EU’s external relations and its current institutional reform agenda. 


With a vibrant research culture, the LSE Department of International Relations is one of the oldest and largest in the world, and remains a leading world centre for the development of the subject. Its reputation for international excellence was recognised in the 2014 Research Assessment Exercise, the LSE Government and International Relations Departments' joint submission was ranked first in the UK for the percentage of its research graded world leading or internationally excellent (88%). LSE also came top in the Politics and International Studies REF panel in terms of the most research publications graded “world leading” (4*); the absolute number of top-rated research outputs.         

LSE’s Department of International Relations ranked 5th in the world in the 2018 QS World University ranking for Politics and International Studies.

On this three-week intensive programme, you will engage with and learn from full-time lecturers from the LSE’s international relations faculty.

Reading materials

Nugent, N., Eighth Edition (2017) The Government and Politics of the European Union, Basingstoke: Macmillan (ISBN-10:1137454083).

Wallace, H. Pollack M. and A. Young, Seventh Edition (2014) Policy-making in the European Union, Oxford: OUP (ISBN-10:0199689679).

Hix, S. and B. Hoyland, Third Edition (2011), The Political System of the European Union, Basingstoke: Macmillan (ISBN-10:0230249825)

*A more detailed reading list will be supplied prior to the start of the programme

**Course content, faculty and dates may be subject to change without prior notice

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