Research interests

Drawing on the knowledge of its 35 professors and researchers in cutting-edge disciplines, the Department of Political Science offers top-quality education in a variety of applied fields.

Departmental research interests

Democracy and political representation

Our research focuses on 2 essential aspects of democracy: political representation and democratic development.

Political representation is intimately connected with participation and citizenship. We look at it from many angles:

  • Representative institutions
  • Electoral systems
  • Political parties
  • Electoral campaigns
  • Individual and group voter behaviour
  • Political communications
  • Public opinion and its impact on decision making

Many of our research teams concentrate on democratic development as they use a wide range of methodological and theoretical tools to examine transition processes. They study almost all regions of the world, from Southern and Eastern Europe to the Middle East, Africa and Latin America.

Public policy and the remaking of political space

Against the backdrop of the issues arising from globalization, the withdrawal of the State and demands by citizens for greater autonomy, the Department's professors concentrate on 3 main areas of public policy:

  • Social policy
  • State economic intervention
  • Foreign and trade policies

Most of these topics are examined from the angle of the remaking of political spaces with the emergence of supranational institutions. Research into social protection, for instance, aims to measure the influence of regional agreements and explain the reactions of civil society.

The Department's researchers focus on European, North American and Latin American societies. They generally proceed by comparative analysis from a continental perspective.

International relations

While the State is still the building block of international relations, growing interdependence and globalization have had a major impact on the State's status and functioning. The State-centred vision is facing many challenges, which the Department's researchers are attempting to identify.

Some of our professors are analyzing the emergence of new players and the resulting strategic issues, while others focus on the management of foreign policy. Our researchers' expertise is widely recognized in certain fields:

  • New regional blocks
  • Arms control
  • Peacekeeping
  • Resolution of civil conflicts
  • Development aid
  • Functioning of international institutions

For the complete list of our experts, see the Department directory.