International Relations and Energy Security

Energy matters.

Master's degree programme, full-time study mode, single-subject, Czech, 2 years 
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The study programme focuses on a detailed study of energy security issues in the context of international relations. Multidisciplinarity is its unique feature - it combines social studies with findings of more technical fields, economics, and law. The aim is to equip students with sufficient knowledge to analyse problems and use the acquired skills in practice. The study programme thus reflects the growing demand of the energy sector for experts in political and strategic issues who combine knowledge of international/political relations with technical, economic, and legal aspects. The instruction is based on critical approach and demanding teaching methods which develop analytical and conceptional thinking of students and their skills in communication, creativity, and team work. The students become acquainted with the terminology, concepts, and methods used in energy security and international relations regarding their application in practice.

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After successfully completing his/her studies the graduate is able to:

  • define, explain, and render the basic patterns of international relations and energy security into practice
  • determine relevant key players and understand their actions
  • define principles of functioning of the Czech energy sector and analyse the situation of the Czech Republic from the energy security point of view
  • determine dimensions and basic mechanisms of the EU common energy policy, define key players and instruments, and analyse the consequences of the EU energy policy for the member states
  • use theories and concepts of the international relations and energy security studies in an informed and creative way
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The graduates in International Relations and Energy Security study programme can pursue careers in many fields; e.g. be involved in the formation of energy legislation of the European Union, implementation of energy policies, relevant areas of state administration, analytical or foreign units of energy companies or in media. Due to the increasing importance of energy issues, positions can be found in diplomatic services or in international institutions, with special regard to the EU. Last but not least, graduates can find jobs in research or in academic sphere.

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The study programme is the follow-up single-subject full-time Master’s degree programme. The studies follow the Study and Examination Regulations of Masaryk University and Study Regulations of the Faculty of Social Studies. The studies are based on credits. The ECTS credits can be earned after the completion of individual subjects. Required courses constitute the core of the programme - all of them must be completed in the course of studies. In addition, the programme offers also selective courses (e.g. Technical-economic Aspects of Energy Security, Environmental Aspects of Energy Security, Energy Security of the Asian countries and Russia, Energy Security of the USA, and Selected Research Methods in International Relations...). The number of selected courses must be such that the credit requirements for selective courses are met. The students choose from the list of selective courses according to their interests and desired future specialisations. The students can also enrol in the courses offered by other departments or faculties, but only in a limited scope.

The studies are completed with the final state examination which the students usually take at the end of the fourth semester. The defence of the Master's thesis forms a part of the final state examination.

To be admitted to the final state examination, students should earn a total number of 120 credits, out of which 54 credits should be earned in required courses and 66 credits in selective courses. The possibility to choose selective courses is not limited (if they are given in the so called registration templates) with the exception of the given minimum number of credits. Elective courses can replace selective courses only in a limited way (12 credits) so that the coherence of the study programme is not disrupted. The students also have to meet the university foreign language knowledge requirements (4 credits to be included in 120 credits for specific courses). To be admitted to the Master's examination students have to complete one course in English language.

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Even if practical training is supported, it is not an obligatory part of the study plan. The Department of International Relations and European Studies, however, has been actively involved in the gradual building up and development of relations with organisations that can help the students in gaining practical skills and experience. The developing system of internships and study visits (primarily through the Erasmus study programme) can be seen as the main contribution in this area.

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The state final examination in International Relations and Energy Security study programme is oral and consists of a Master's thesis defence and an examination in three main subjects:

a) Theoretical Approaches and Key Concepts

b) Energy Policy of the Czech Republic

c) The EU Energy Policy

The students are informed in advance about a range of specific topics and selected literature. The areas correspond to the content of required courses; therefore, students acquire knowledge gradually during their studies. The students choose one question for each of the state examination subjects and conduct a professional discussion with the members of the state examination committee. The primary goal is to conduct a professional discussion on predefined issues, and if it is suitable, expand the topic by using examples from the Master's thesis or other problems students are familiar with. During the final state examination students demonstrate their ability to apply theoretical approaches and concepts to selected problems, thorough knowledge of the energy security of the Czech Republic and the EU energy policy, and their ability to conduct professional discussion on related issues and aspects. Therefore, the final state examination is closely related to the aims of studies.

The ability to apply the methodology and theoretical concepts in research in international relations and energy security forms also a part of the process of writing and defence of the Master's thesis - in the range of 80 to 100 pages (at least 144 000 characters).

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The graduates can progress to further studies in the doctoral degree programme.

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Field of study specifications

Field of Study: International Relations and Energy Security
Abbreviation: MVEB
Code: 6701T028
Type: Master's degree programme (following the Bachelor's one)
Degree: Mgr.
Accreditation: to 31/12/2024
Programme: N6702 N-MS International Territorial Studies
Faculty of Social Studies
Field of study guaranteed by:
Faculty of Social Studies
Field guarantor:
doc. PhDr. Břetislav Dančák, Ph.D.

Additional Information