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PI3555: NORDIC POLITICS (2016-2017)

Last modified: 28 Jun 2018 10:27

Course Overview

This course provides an introduction to the political systems of the five Nordic countries Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. It will cover a wide range of topics, such as parties and party systems, elections and voting, welfare systems, security and international relations, policy making, parliaments and governments. It is not necessary to have any specific prior knowledge of the countries concerned, or to be able to read any of the Nordic languages. The course is suitable for anyone interested in Politics and/or IR, and the different themes covered will be linked to key theories in those disciplines. 

Course Details

Study Type Undergraduate Level 3
Session Second Sub Session Credit Points 30 credits (15 ECTS credits)
Campus None. Sustained Study No
  • Dr Anders Widfeldt

Qualification Prerequisites


What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

  • Either International Relations (IR) (Studied) or Politics (PI) (Studied)
  • Any Undergraduate Programme (Studied)

What other courses must be taken with this course?


What courses cannot be taken with this course?

  • (Studied)

Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

The course is designed to provide a basic introduction to the political systems of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. The treatment will be comparative, and designed to strengthen students' understanding of a relatively neglected region of the New Europe. Following a brief historical introduction, the focus of the course will be on the comparative analysis of the 'political inputs': political culture, elections, electoral systems, referenda, social cleavages and voting, parties, party system, governments, and parliaments. Drawing on the basic comparative politics literature, the course will also consider issues such as party system change, security policy and neo-corporatism in the Nordic context.

Further Information & Notes

Available only to students in Politics OR International Relations degrees.

Contact Teaching Time

Information on contact teaching time is available from the course guide.

Teaching Breakdown

More Information about Week Numbers

Details, including assessments, may be subject to change until 31 August 2023 for 1st half-session courses and 22 December 2023 for 2nd half-session courses.

Summative Assessments

1st Attempt: 1 three-hour written examination (60%); 1 continuous assessment essay of 5,000 words (40%).

Resit: 1 three-hour examination (60%); In-course grades will be carried forward unless the student opts to resubmit course work (40%).

Formative Assessment


Written feedback will be provided for continuous assessment work. This will normally be provided within three weeks of the submission date. Oral feedback on class presentations will also be provided where appropriate.

Course Learning Outcomes


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