International Organizations: Institutions, People, Networks

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Course Description

  • Course Name

    International Organizations: Institutions, People, Networks

  • Host University

    Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

  • Location

    Amsterdam, The Netherlands

  • Area of Study

    International Affairs, International Relations

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • ECTS Credits

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    After successful completion of the course, students are able to:
    (1) understand the history of international organizations and transnational agendasetting from the mid nineteenth century until present day, in particular organizations dedicated to issues of women’s rights, civil rights and national self-determination;
    (2) identify and explain the ways in which international organizations from the mid nineteenth century onwards have positioned themselves globally within the aforementioned debates;
    (3) demonstrate and explain the ways in which international organizations and their epistemic communities in particular have set political and ideological agendas in the past, and how they have (explicitly or implicitly) influenced local, regional, national and global policies;
    (4) apply concepts and (digital) methodological tools to analyze sources relevant to these nineteenth and twentieth century international organizations and their epistemic communities;
    (5) evaluate the extent to which international organizations and epistemic communities in particular have been able to influence global agendasetting and the extent to which they have been constrained by local, national, regional and supranational governmental structures

    From the early nineteenth century onwards, so-called supra- and international organizations in Europe started to interact with (nation-)state authorities in new and myriad ways. This course fleshes out concepts and theories of globalization, internationalism and transnationalism by focusing on international organizations as actors in global processes of decision-making from the late nineteenth century onwards until present day. The aim of this course is to examine historically in what ways local, regional and global flows and networks of people and ideas in international networks have enabled social, cultural and political change on a global scale. This course weaves together global discussions central to late nineteenth and mid-twentieth century political, social and cultural thought and debates, i.e. women’s rights, civil rights and issues of (national) self-determination and their global travels. In so doing, this course also touches upon these debates’ philosophical and ideological underpinnings in European, Latin-American and (North-)African and Middle Eastern history, and the traveling epistemic communities that were central to these global networks.

    Seminars, workshops, excursions, independent research and writing.

    Essays (40%) and group portfolio (60%)

    At least one year of history, cultural studies or relevant social sciences

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Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

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