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Politics, Security and Crisis – two-year Master’s programme

Politics, Security and Crisis is a master’s programme in Political Science that will give you a deeper understanding of matters relating to security policy, crises and crisis management and enhance your skills in these fields. The programme will provide both extensive theoretical knowledge and tools to help you understand how the world functions with regard to security policy and crises.

The programme offers advanced training in critical thinking and independent judgement, and tools to help you analyse complex processes, at the same time providing deeper insight into how war, peace and security policies come to be shaped by different actors. This programme will hone your theoretical knowledge and provide training in both advanced scientific methods and analytical skills.

The programme also gives you the opportunity to take part in international student exchanges at highly reputed universities in Europe via the Erasmus programme, and you will also be able to enter the internship programme which provides relevant practical experience at public agencies, international organisations and private sector security companies.

This course leads to a Master’s Degree in Political Science with focus on Crisis Management and Security; a degree course which is the only one of its kind available in Sweden. Students who so choose may complete the programme in one year to receive a one-year master’s degree . All tuition is given in English.

Future career opportunities

Of all the academic institutions in Sweden, the Swedish Defence University (SEDU) is the only one that offers the Master’s Programme Politics, Security and Crisis. Our students move on to careers in relevant fields in public agencies and government departments, such as ministries for foreign affairs, defense research agencies, and agencies and organisations involved in civil contingencies work. Other potential employers are organisations involved in total defence, local crisis and risk organisations, and national and international organisations such as the EU, UN and various international aid organisations. In addition to jobs as analysts there are also opportunities in civil contingency planning and protection at the local, regional and national levels. For graduates who are Swedish citizens there are also openings for a civilian career in the Swedish Armed Forces.

Completion of the programme also makes you eligible for a number of research programmes, for example in the fields of political science, peace and conflict research, war studies and international relations.

About the programme

Thanks to its focus on security policy and crisis management, the Master’s Programme gives you a rare educational grounding. The course will give you deeper knowledge and understanding of how security and insecurity situations arise, and a broader perspective on crisis and crisis management. The emphasis lies on international security issues, but you will also study crises in a societal perspective and learn more about the increasingly transnational character of contemporary security challenges. Thus, this programme gives you a very broad, but also deep, understanding of how society conceives and shapes its security policies and how it is able to handle contemporary and future crises.

The programme will also give you rigorous training in scientific methods designed to promote advanced analytical skills. Scenario based role games, wargaming and a semester devoted to practical training in the form of an internship also form part the of the programme. In other words, the programme will give you not only theoretical and case-based knowledge of security, risk, and crisis management but also the relevant vocational skills.

At the Swedish Defence University students have access to Sweden’s foremost experts on security issues; lecturers and researchers who are not only foremost in their field, but who frequently act as consultants to the media. Research conducted in the field of political science covers a broad spectrum of subjects including crisis management, security and political psychology.

Structure of the programme: overview by semester

Politics, Security and Crisis (15 credits)

Designing and Doing Research, Political Science (15 credits)

During your first semester you will attend an introductory course to political science which focuses on security and crisis, followed by a course in scientific methods. The course will give you basic knowledge of political science with focus on crisis management, while the course in methodology provides you with tools for analysing and understanding policy, security policy and crisis management in a scientific framework.

Elective courses (30 credits)

Examples of elective courses:

  • International Law and Contemporary Conflicts (7.5 credits)
  • Civil-Military Relations, reading course (7,5 credits)
  • Modern Peace-Support Operations (7.5 credits)
  • Special Forces: Theory and Practice (7.5 credits)
  • Proxy Wars, Interventions and Covert Operations (7.5 credits)
  • Gender, Security and War (7.5 credits)
  • Human Security and the Responsibility to Protect (7,5 credits)
  • War and Society (7,5 credits)
  • Reviewing a Research Field (15 credits)
  • When war comes to the city: Urban wars and urban warfare (7,5 credits)
  • Masters Thesis, Political Science (15 credits)
  • Political Psychology and Crisis Management (7,5 credis)
  • Public Policy Analysis, reading course (7,5 credits)
  • European Security and Crisis Management ( 7,5 credits)
  • From Diplomacy to Deception: Influence through Strategic Narratives (7,5 credits)
  • The Sit Room: Executing US Strategy (7,5 credits)
  • Political Influence through Strategic Narratives in International Security, reading course (7,5 credits)
  • The Defence Policy and Military Strategy of the Nordic Countries (7,5 credits)
  • Environment, Risk and Security: Life in the Anthropocene (7,5 credits)
  • Political communication: Information influence as a security problem, reading course (7,5 credits)
  • Secret Intelligence (7,5 credits)

The range of elective courses will be determined on an annual basis.

During your second semester you will be able to read four elective modules. You decide for yourself if you wish to delve deeper into a specific area by following the suggested thematic tracks, or if you would prefer to take courses with a broader span. The elective courses offer a broad spectrum of subject matter. For example, you could choose in-depth studies of various types of crisis management, global threats and security policy or opt for modules in War Studies, which focus on warfare, strategy or defence and defence policy. In other words, the master programme offers both breadth and in-depth knowledge based on the latest findings.

Master's Thesis, Political Science (30 credits)

The third semester is reserved for work on your master’s thesis. A master’s thesis gives you the opportunity to conduct an in-depth study of the issues that interest you most and to put your proficiency in scientific methods to the test.

Internship, Political Science (30 credits)

or

Elective courses (30 credits)

Examples of elective courses:

  • International Law and Contemporary Conflicts (7.5 credits)
  • Civil-Military Relations, reading course (7,5 credits)
  • Modern Peace-Support Operations (7.5 credits)
  • Special Forces: Theory and Practice (7.5 credits)
  • Proxy Wars, Interventions and Covert Operations (7.5 credits)
  • Gender, Security and War (7.5 credits)
  • Human Security and the Responsibility to Protect (7,5 credits)
  • War and Society (7,5 credits)
  • Reviewing a Research Field (15 credits)
  • When war comes to the city: Urban wars and urban warfare (7,5 credits)
  • Masters Thesis, Political Science (15 credits)
  • Political Psychology and Crisis Management (7,5 credis)
  • Public Policy Analysis, reading course (7,5 credits)
  • European Security and Crisis Management ( 7,5 credits)
  • From Diplomacy to Deception: Influence through Strategic Narratives (7,5 credits)
  • The Sit Room: Executing US Strategy (7,5 credits)
  • Political Influence through Strategic Narratives in International Security, reading course (7,5 credits)
  • The Defence Policy and Military Strategy of the Nordic Countries (7,5 credits)
  • Environment, Risk and Security: Life in the Anthropocene (7,5 credits)
  • Political communication: Information influence as a security problem, reading course (7,5 credits)
  • Secret Intelligence (7,5 credits)

The range of elective courses will be determined on an annual basis.

For the fourth semester you are free to decide whether you wish to apply for an internship or if you prefer to take additional elective courses. In other words, you can choose to engage in in-depth, empirical and theoretical studies or to focus more directly on practical situations in a work environment.

The second and fourth semesters also open up opportunities for studies abroad via our exchange agreements with partner universities.

Student exchanges

The Swedish Defence University takes part in the Erasmus exchange programme, which means that our students have the opportunity to spend one semester of their studies at a university abroad. Participation in an exchange programme is an excellent way of broadening one’s perspectives and acquiring new experiences at prestigious universities such as the University of St Andrews (Scotland), Sciences Po (France) and the University of Bologna (Italy). Our partner universities offer a broad selection of relevant courses, which means that your master’s degree may come to include several different specialties. Read more at our study abroad webpage on the Student Web.

Application

Supporting documents must be uploaded through www.universityadmissions.se with your application. All documents issued in other languages than Swedish, English, Danish or Norwegian must be translated by an authorised translator. Please note that the original documents should be uploaded as well.

For students on their last year of Bachelor’s studies with no graded thesis/work yet, an extended deadline for the thesis/academic paper is given until February 13, 2023. Submitted work that has not been graded by the extended deadline will not be considered. All other supporting documents must be submitted February 1, 2023 latest.

Application period opens 17 October 2022 and closes 16 January 2023.

Application fee and scholarships

Students coming from a country outside the EU must pay an application fee of 900 Swedish kronor and a tuition fee of 105,000 Swedish kronor per year. However, students from outside the EU may also apply for scholarships to cover the cost of tuition. Read more about the scholarships available at the Stockholm Defence University.

Watch the film for information on Political Science and War Studies.

Level

Advanced level

Credits

120

Starts

Autumn-23

Start week

Week 35

End week

Week 22

Requirements

Minimum: A Bachelor’s Degree (180 credits equivalent to three years of full-time studies) 90 credits of the Bachelor’s Degree must be in Political Science with a focus on Crisis Management and Security or another relevant subject such as Public Administration, International Relations, or Peace and Conflict Studies. A graded independent research project (BA thesis) or equivalent is necessary as well as fulfilling the national English B/English 6 requirement.

Form of teaching

Normal

Language

English

Course fee

For non EU citizen: application fee SEK 900. Tuition fee: SEK 105 000 per year

Study pace

100%

Selection

Selection is based on a comprehensive assessment of previous studies and the relevance of previous studies, and particular importance is given to the quality of the Bachelor’s thesis or an equivalent academic paper if a Bachelor’s thesis was not an integrated part of the Bachelor curriculum. Students who do not have a Bachelor thesis in their original curriculum, or students in their last year of studies, should upload two graded academic works such as essays or papers relevant to Politics, Security and Crisis. It is important that the papers have received an official grade.

Type

Program

Internship at the Swedish Embassy in Rwanda

All roads lead to Africa – and Ellinore Eriksson herself has made that happen. She did the Master’s programme’s concluding internship term at Sweden’s embassy in Kigali, Rwanda.

Internship at the UN in New York

From Uppsala to New York, and an internship on the 46th floor of the UN skyscraper. The Master’s programme Politics, Security and War has been like a lift to the centre of world events.

A Dutch in Stockholm

Annemarijn Kamp has followed her gut feeling throughout her studies. It has taken her all the way from psychology studies in the Netherlands to a position as cyber security consultant.

Education at the Swedish Defence University

Studies at Swedish Defence University - a both civil and military university - offers a completely different experience compared to most other universities.

Academia meets reality at the Master's Programme

How do the EU, NATO and the countries of the world respond to a security crisis? During an intensive week, students at the Master's Programme in Politics, Security and War practice various a...

The best of two worlds

During his internship as a research assistant at the Swedish Defence University, Magnus Lundström became aware of the university's unique academic environment. Now he is studying in the mast...

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Published 2022-10-07 Updated 2023-01-18