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Five fundamental modules form the framework of teaching and research at CIFE-IE•EI. Generally, the courses take place every week. Each module is directed by a permanent faculty member. Additionally, guest lecturers from other countries, experts from various European and international organisations, as well as researchers from partner institutions contribute to these modules.


1. The EU in a multipolar world

Complex interdependency, dynamic power figurations and imbalances characterise today's world politics, an arena that is influenced by diverse actors in multi-level processes.
Since its establishment in the early 20th century, the academic discipline of International Relations (IR) has been shaped by different schools of thought. Therefore, we will explore the major theories that draft a comprehensive or holistic explanation of international politics, in order both to identify presuppositions in public debates and to apply those theoretical tools to academic analysis.
Understanding and explaining conflicts and cooperation has been always at the heart of IR. Nevertheless, major explanations of extreme violence and genocides have primarily emerged in other disciplines. In an interdisciplinary approach we will plunge into the complex topics of violent conflicts. Theories of violence will help us to understand case studies in the Western Balkans, the Middle East, South Asia and Africa.
Studying in different European countries – while international politics is taking place and being debated – will enrich your understanding of the similarities, differences and interactions of national foreign policies in a globalised world. International guest lecturers coming from universities, think tanks, diplomacy and politics will be invited to present emerging patterns of international politics, including international law and international tribunals, globalisation and transatlantic relations.

2. Policy-Making in the EU

At the beginning of the new millennium, the European Union can look back at considerable achievements such as the completion of the monetary union. On the other hand, the EU remains confronted with huge challenges: New member states in Central and Eastern Europe need to be fully integrated, the EU institutions must be reformed, a common identity for foreign and security politics must be reinforced, the acceptance of the EU amongst its Member States’ populations needs to be strengthened.
This module aims at familiarising the students, who could well become the next generation of European and international decision-makers, with an expert knowledge of the structures, institutions, and problems of the European Union. We focus firstly on the historical development of European unification and then go on to analyse the Union’s institutions and study the basics of EU law. The last part of the program is devoted to the different policies of the EU and especially emphasises the challenges of enlargement

3. Democracy, Federalism and Governance

For the last fifteen years, federalism has known a revival as an international field of studies. In this framework, three major developments can be considered.
The first is the study of the European Union, not analysed any more as a process of integration but in terms of federal institutional comparative approach.
The second development is multi-level governance, that can be conceived as an extension of federalism as it deals with any form of multi-tier institutional system. This cooperative/competitive approach has appeared to understand the institutional consequences of the process of globalisation in post-industrialised societies, and of the subsequent changing of nature of sovereignty in the relevant states.
Eventually, federalism has become a tool of conflict resolution, in order to resolve violent conflicts all over the world. Examples include Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ethiopia, Iraq, and Nepal. It is also perceived as a solution for Syria, Cyprus, Ukraine, Libya… As well, new federal discourses have emerged in historically centralised countries.
It appears that all these developments share a same multi-tier conceptual framework, referred to as federalism. As such, they add themselves to older federal questions, such as political co-operation, democratic representation, minority issues and economic coordination. However, understanding the contemporary evolution of the federal meaning and of its main uses requires an innovative analytical thinking. This module will bring together these new approaches and highlight the changing nature of federalism in an ever more complex world.

4. Economic and Monetary Integration

International economics analyses the exchanges of goods, services and capitals between countries. It also analyses the conditions under which these exchanges take place. If the rule of free trade appears to have priority, in actuality, many countries resort to protectionism, in spite of WTO rules. The key fact of the last twenty-five years has been the manifold increase of exchanges across the world, in the context of a transition of socialist countries to a market economy and of the rise of new powers. Globalisation is at the heart of all the concerns (or fears) of the various players, such as political leaders, unions, businesses, households, civil society, etc. Are we witnessing the shifting of the world’s centre in favour of South and East Asia? Will it still be possible for the world economy to be dominated by a single power? In order to answer several questions of international economics, we put forward the following topics: methodological tools, typology of countries, key institutions, the measure of exchanges, trade policy, the international monetary system, regional trade agreements.

5. Professional Skills Workshops

This module equips the participants with professional skills and competences that will enable them to work in the context of the European and International organisations. They will actively take part in several simulation games and follow seminars and workshops on:
- Project cycle management
- Intercultural communication
- International mediation and negotiation
- Drafting of position papers and policy recommendations
- Career workshop



CIFE is one of my favorite clients.  After many rounds of teaching jaded business executives or militant union leaders the art of negotiation, what a pleasure to be with this energetic, motivated and highly international group of students. Our sessions together are not only highly enjoyable, but also rich in learning, also for me. What a great programme!

Mark Young, Negotiation Expert, Founder of Rational Games 



CIFE's Master programme is remarkable on several counts:
1. It is multidisciplinary, which ensures tolerance and reflection, thus avoiding the one-dimensional approach too often associated with false certainties.
2. It is open to the world, even if the European Union is more "present" than other spaces. In a context that is sometimes one of wariness of the outside world, this is a major plus.
3. Coming from varied backgrounds, students are given the opportunity to compare ideas and analyses for their mutual benefit, ands they eagerly seize it!

Jean-Claude Vérez, Lecturer at the University of Artois, Director MAEIS Mediterranean Studies