Course Overview

The two-year Master’s Degree (LaureaMagistralis) in World Politics and International Relations is taught entirely in English and includes core courses with a comparative and international focus.

The number of contact hours between students and faculty is unusually high by European standards (40 hours for a standard 6-credit course), and much of the teaching is interactive.

The examination is a mixture of written coursework, written and oral exams, and a final thesis viva. Over the two years, you may expect to write 5 or 6 assessed essays and receive feedback on them. You will improve your soft skills, including skills in teamwork, critical argumentation, presentations, and public speaking. During the second year, you will write a research thesis under the personal supervision of a member of the Department.

Some courses involve the participation of outside speakers and practitioners from the fields of diplomacy and international law (ambassadors, international judges, representatives from Consulates, etc.). In addition, the degree course hosts visiting professors from China, Europe, and North and South America.

Over the last years, just over a half of the students enrolled in the degree course have been non-Italian, coming from countries as diverse as Afghanistan, Albania, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Cuba, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Ghana, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Laos, Lebanon, Lithuania, Macedonia, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palestine, Portugal, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Sierra Leone, Slovakia, Spain, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Kingdom, USA, Vietnam, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

Our students say that the international composition of the class is one of the great strengths of the degree course.

Italian and non-Italian students alike gain the opportunity to work in a vibrant, cosmopolitan, English-speaking community, while also experiencing the culturally rich environment of Italian academia.

Pavia University participates in a number of exchange programs, including the Erasmus program which provides financial assistance to students currently enrolled at Pavia who wish to spend part or all of their second year abroad, substituting exams at Pavia’s partner universities for their regular Pavia exams.

In addition, Pavia is part of the Coimbra Group, a network of the 25 oldest universities in Europe, which organizes student exchanges.

World Politics and International Relations students have an excellent success record in applications for the University’s mobility programs. For further information on exchange programs, click here.

The current degree course coordinator is Prof. Marco Clementi.

Any queries about the degree course should be sent to

Valentina Sacco, 2nd year student in World Politics and International Relations, 2014-15

Valentina Sacco - WPIR alumna

“One of the hallmarks of the World Politics and International Relations Course is the way it relates theoretical and applied knowledge. In courses such as those in international Law, international relations, and regional integration, theoretical concepts are analyzed and applied to particular cases. The link between theory and practice makes a class fascinating and extremely useful. It is satisfying to improve one’s knowledge and competencies through a personal, active contribution”.