Democracy Studies Curriculum

An integrated curriculum

In accordance with Graduate School regulations, the DPDS curriculum consists of 12 ECTS, with four Core Modules and four Advanced Modules. Each core module is worth 2 ECTS for a total of 8 ECTS, and each advanced module is worth 1 ECTS for a total of 4 ECTS.



Core Modules Democracy Studies Module I: Democratic Theory 2
Democracy Studies Module II: Empirical Approaches to Democracy 2
Democracy Studies Research Colloquium 2
Swiss Summer School in Democracy Studies 2
Advanced Modules Advanced Module on Democracy 1
Workshop Democracy in Practice 1
Research Method Course 1
Elective 1

Among the Core Modules, the two courses “Democratic Theory” and “Empirical Approaches to Democracy” ensure that the students undertake their doctoral research armed with a strong theoretical, conceptual and methodological training in research on democracy. Next to these two modules, the "Democracy Studies Research Colloquium” allows participants to present the different stages of their doctoral dissertations and receive regular feedback from their peers as well as professors. In addition, every year Democracy Studies organizes the “Swiss Summer School in Democracy Studies”.

Discipline-specific requirements and advanced modules can easily be built into the curriculum for up to 4 ECTS, to complement the training and support transdisciplinary approaches with advanced modules on democracy and in methods offered by participating departments. Participants follow the guidelines set by their respective disciplines, which award them their doctoral degree.

All members of Democracy Studies need to complete the first four compulsory Core Modules. See Curricular Requirements

Democracy Studies Certificate

Successful participants completing the Democracy Studies curriculum receive a certificate awarded by the Graduate School PhF at the time of their PhD graduation. Conferment of the certificate recognises the transdisciplinary training received by the participants as well as the contribution of their doctoral research to existing scholarship on democracy.