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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Social and Political Science : Postgrad (School of Social and Political Studies)

Postgraduate Course: Analysing European Governance and Public Policy (PGSP11412)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Social and Political Science CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course aims to provide an overview of the various analytical, conceptual and theoretical approaches to the study of European Governance (institutions, structures, decision-making processes within the EU institutions, and between organisational entities of the EU and other actors) and Public Policy (policy-making, multi-level dynamics, competence-sharing, differentiated integration, budgeting, implementation and compliance).

It follows an interdisciplinary approach, which consciously integrates the European integration literature with relevant frameworks and approaches drawn from International Relations and other strands of political analysis. By bringing together insights from various disciplines the course invites students to tap into the full range of possible theoretical and analytical lenses in the study and research of European Governance and Public Policy. The course specifically aims to help students develop a comprehensive analytical toolkit that enables them to tackle research questions in a more rounded and original manner.

"Analysing European Governance and Public Policy" serves as a compulsory core course for the MSc International and European Politics (in conjunction with the "Institutions and Policies of the EU") but is also available as an option to students on other taught postgraduate degree programmes within the School (permitting a quota of 40 students).
Course description This course offers an overview of relevant analytical, conceptual and theoretical approaches in the study of European Governance (institutions, structures, decision-making processes within the EU institutions, and between organisational entities of the EU and other actors) and Public Policy (policy-making, multi-level dynamics, competence-sharing, differentiated integration, budgeting, implementation and compliance). It does so in a conscious attempt to break with the common practice of teaching European integration theory in isolation from other fields like International Relations and Comparative Politics. With this specific inter-disciplinary focus, the course seeks to animate students of European Governance and Public Policy to reach out to other fields of study, which have long started to infuse the European Studies literature but are yet to be perceived and built upon in a more integrated manner. This is aimed to help students develop more imaginative and intellectually rounded ways of problematizing, conceptualizing and theorizing EU-related issues. This is a compulsory core course for the MSc International and European Politics but it is also available as a course option to students on other taught PG degree programmes within SSPS.

Outline Content
The course starts with three introductory, mostly lecture-style sessions that give a general overview of the range of approaches discussed on the course and help contextualise the study of European Governance and Public Policy in the wider European Studies, International Relations and Political Science literature. In these sessions, we will look at the challenges and requirements of ¿doing¿ European Global Governance and Public Policy research, review the classic approaches to European integration and look into recent developments in the literature, in particular, the ¿mainstreaming¿ of European integration research and the question of whether various approaches really deliver competing explanations. The course will then engage with a different theoretical approach or tradition each with, including Institutionalism(s), Governance Approaches, Liberal Intergovernmentalism, Europeanization, Constructivisms, Critical and Normative Approaches and approaches to capture the EU as a global (f)actor.

The course focuses on student-centred and self-empowered learning and teaching methods: this is reflected in specific activities, such as presentations and structured debates, as well as in the way the course is assessed. The course builds on specific example texts that each represents a different analytical approach. From that basis, student are required to identify potential issues and challenges with each approach and share their reflections on how it could be applied to other issue areas.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements Students taking this course as an option should either have previous knowledge of the structures and policies of the EU or take the course in conjunction with "Institutions and Policies of the EU" (PGSP11170).
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2018/19, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  30
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 176 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) A combination of an essay (20%), a research review (50%) and of participation (20%)
Feedback Assessment for this course consists of three components that make up the overall mark: one essay of max. 1500 words is to be written on a set question (30% of overall mark). In this essay, students are expected to engage with the core and further readings of the course and display adequate academic writing, referencing and analytical skills. The second component is a max. 2000-word research review (50%) on a topic of choice. Suggestions will be provided for reading items to discuss in the review. Feedback for both the essay and the research review wil be given in writing and within 15 working days of the deadline.The final component of assessment is seminar participation (20%), which is based on attendance and contributions to class activities throughout the semester. Feedback is given in writing at the end of the semester.
Formative assessment: students are asked to type up their thoughts on each session and will receive feedback for these personal reports. Students can also submit an essay plan or/and a sketch of their research review for formative feedback. Students can also ask for mid-term feedback on their participation.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Understand and explain how academic analysis of European integration, governance and policy-making interacts and develops in conjunction with political practice and historical events
  2. Identify and outline different analytical perspectives on EU-related issues that represent the range of possible theoretical and conceptual lenses
  3. Abstract and reflect on the way analytical assumptions can determine judgments and predictions, and produce competing teleologies of the European project and interpretations of its outcomes
  4. Demonstrate critical awareness of their own analytical viewpoint and the consequences for their own research (i.a. their dissertation project) and policy analysis
  5. Demonstrate advanced communication skills, both written and verbal
Reading List
Course textbook:
Saurugger, Sabine (2014) Theoretical Approaches to European Integration. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. [recommended for purchase]

Specific further readings will be assigned at the start of the semester, e.g. Ioannou, D., Leblond, P. and Niemann, A. (2015) (eds) Special Issue: European integration in times of crisis: theoretical perspectives, Journal of European Public Policy, Vol. 22:2.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills The course aims to help students develop their interpersonal and research skills. A majority of the weekly sessions will be held in a small group seminar-style setting, so students will get plenty of opportunity to express their own views, build off the ideas of others and establish connections with their peers. In the second half of the semester, students get to choose their own thematic focus which they can expand on in their research reviews and research posters. This aims to help students develop an independent working style and an individual sense of intellectual purpose that they can use in their progression towards dissertation stage.
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserProf John Peterson
Tel: (0131 6)51 3023
Course secretaryMrs Gillian MacDonald
Tel: (0131 6)51 3244
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