Geopolitics of Central Europe (Nankai) CEES5063

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Social and Political Sciences
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course provides students with the opportunity to examine key geopolitical developments in Central Europe. The course will review contemporary conceptualisations of Central Europe, examine regional and international political cooperation, European and Transatlantic integration with regard to the European Union and NATO, new emerging security challenges and national foreign policy development.


6 x 3-hour sessions.

Requirements of Entry

Open to postgraduate students only.

Excluded Courses





 This module will be formally assessed by means of:

■ Coursework in the form of an essay 3,000 words in length (50% of grade)

■ A written exam to be convened in class (50% of grade)

Course Aims

This course is designed to appeal to students interested in the politics and international relations of the Central European region, with specific attention given to the Visegrád countries of Poland, Hungary, Czech Republic and Slovak Republic.

The course aims to:

■ enable students to examine the place of these Central European states within regional, European and international geopolitical discourses;

■ emphasise the strategic priorities and attitudes of the Central European states towards (1) each other, (2) the European Union and European states and regions including Germany, the Baltic States and South Eastern Europe, (3) NATO and the USA and (4) states in the eastern neighbourhood region, including Russia and Eastern Partnership countries;

■ encourage the use of a comparative approach to understanding the driving forces behind national and regional positions on key geopolitical matters including European and regional integration, foreign policy development and new security challenges (e.g. energy, military reform).

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ assess the impact of transition and European integration upon the geopolitical environment of post-Cold War Central Europe;

■ compare and contrast levels of power and status among Central European states;

■ utilise theories/perspectives of international relations to help explain how power shapes individual, regional and international political relations of Central European states;

■ explain the role and influence of the EU, NATO and major world powers in Central Europe;

■ describe and evaluate the differing and shared strategic goals of Central European states and how these inform their foreign policy priorities;

■ identify and assess the new security challenges facing Central Europe and explain how they inform international relations across the region.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.