MEDITERRANEAN POLITICS

Academic Year 2021/2022 - 1° Year

Course Structure

This teaching relies upon traditional lectures and active learning, i.e. presentations in class and simulation of negotiations concerning migration issues. This seminar format fosters autonomous learning and the elaboration of personal opinions and critical stances on Mediterranean Politics.
The first part of the course - lectures from Nov. to Dec. - relies upon compulsory lectures (see selected chapters of the Routledge handbook on Mediterranean Politics). Students are required to to read texts beforehand so to actively participate in the class debate. Students illustrate individually or in group (2/3 presenters) the content of selected readings with the support of a ppt or prezi presentation.
The second part of the course (January) relies upon students’ simulations.

Negotiation Lab on Migration Politics. It has a hands-on nature, namely it helps understanding the complex EU decision–making process concerning migration. This Negotiation Lab seeks to render the decision-making process more tangible and comprehensible to students by exploring the complex negotiations among EUMS within the Council of the EU, the inter-institutional negotiation re the Dublin Regulation Reform, considering European Commission and European Parliament different stances and roles. The European Union is often said to be distant from EU citizens. This Negotiation Lab boosts interest on the EU migration policy, by zooming into the intra-EU tensions.


Required Prerequisites

Elementary concepts of Political Science are required to understand Euro-Mediterranean Relations: cooperation, peace/war, regional crises, democracy, political change/authoritarianism.


Attendance of Lessons

GLOPEM requires compulsory attendance.

Thanks to compulsory attendance students are socialized to Political Science.


Detailed Course Content

This teaching course explores the Mediterranean region and provides the theoretical and analytical tools to explain political processes and to understand critical security issues in the EuroMediterranean area.

In order to understand Euro-Mediterranean relations, it investigates relations between regional and global actors (in particular EU, USA and Southern Mediterranean Countries), state and non-state actors (e.g. political parties and civil society organizations), transnational actors and International Organizations.

It explores the most relevant on-going processes in the Mediterranean area, namely EMP/UfM, ENP, democratization (or lack of), and crucial issues such as regional territorial disputes, security (maritime security in particular), migration, terrorism, energy security, etc.


Textbook Information

R. Gillespie and F. Volpi (eds), Routledge Handbook of Mediterranean Politics, Routledge, 2017, chapters:

1, 4, 7, 8, 17, 18, 32

A selected reference list is provided to students to prepare PPT or PREZI's presentations



Course Planning

 SubjectsReferences to Textbooks
1Conceptualizing Mediterranean Politicschapt. 1 
2The Arab Uprisingschapt. 18 
3Regionalism in the Mediterraneanchapt. 4 
4EuroMediterranean RelationsChapt. 7 
5Security in the MediterraneanChapt. 17 
6Migration in the MediterraneanChapt. 32 
7The North-South divide in the European Union Chapt. 8 

LEARNING ASSESSMENT

Learning Assessment methods

Class debate, presentations, simulation and final essays.

The final evaluation will take into account participation in the class debate (10%); the class presentations (20%); negotiation lab (30%) and the final written paper (mini-essay) (40%).


Examples of frequently Questions and / or Exercises

The final evaluation relies upon written mini-essays addressing the following sample issues:

  1. Define the Mediterranean as a region by making use of the appropriate literature.
  2. In the 1990s Euro-Mediterranean relations have been characterized by region-building processes. In the 2000s the recrudescence of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has jeopardized regionalism. Since the Arab Spring bilateralism has been prevailing. In your opinion which are the most useful theoretical approaches to understand the current times?
  3. Apply the literature on regionalization to the Mediterranean and explain the ‘volatile regionalism’ model.
  4. Explain the ‘winds of democratic change’ in the Mediterranean.The Arab uprisings produced uneven outcomes, please provide an explanation of these uneven outcomes by referring to the existing literature on democratization and making use of appropriate case-studies.
  5. The EU as a democracy-promoter: pitfalls and strengths of this normative approach.
  6. What kind of theories can explain resilience and transition in the MENA? What are their strengths and weaknesses?
  7. How to overcome the border control-humanitarian approach divide when addressing the Mediterranean migration crisis.
  8. Addressing Migration in the Mediterranean: burden-sharing versus burden-shifting
  9. Managing migration in the Mediterranean despite North-South/East-West cleavages

    How to write a written mini-essay (maximum 1000 words plus reference):

Provide a sound answer, related to the topic.

Elaborate an original contribution.

Provide a robust argument (not just an opinion piece).

Add pertinent examples and illustrations.

Use appropriately the compulsory readings (the further readings can be used as well).

Add accurate bibliographical references (no less than 3/4 readings).