The European Union Policy Making


The aim of the course is to undertake a critical analysis of EU institutional structure and political functioning from the point of view of political science. The course proposes a reflection on the nature of the EU political system and policy, by looking at its historical and constitutional design. It then examines how the EU institutions are appointed ; how they function ; their respective powers ; how they interact with each others and with the national political institutions and civil society actors. It describes the European policy making. It finally examines the process of institutional reform and the challenges the EU is facing today.

Recommended Prerequisite(s)

There are no pre-requisites, but this class is primarily intended for students with prior training in political science and international relations.

Form of assessment

The number of ECTS credits and the assessment methods are likely to be different for students in credit exchange programmes.


  • Buonanno L. & Nugent N., Policies and Policy Processes of the European Union, Basingstoke : Palgrave Macmillan, 2013.
  • Costa O. & Brack N., How the European Union really works, 2nd ed., Farnham, Routledge, 2018. (This book also exists in French: Le fonctionnement de l’Union européenne, Brussels, Editions de l’Université de Bruxelles, 2017, 3rd ed. and in Chinese: 欧盟是怎么运作的, Beijing, Social Sciences Academic Press, 2017, 2nd ed.)
  • Hix S. & Høyland B., The Political System of the European Union, Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan, 2011.

Educational formula

Students are encouraged to choose and  use a textbook to support their learning, and to read a number of the documents provided.

In brief

Year Fourth year

Teaching languageEnglish

Teaching term Six-monthly

ECTS credits 3.0

Number of hours 18.0

Teaching activityLecture course

ValidationFinal written examination

Mandatory teaching

Open to exchange students



Educational manager :
Costa Olivier