Management of International Social Challenges

Study programme

How is the programme organised?

The bachelor programme is divided into eight successive 5-week periods. In each period, you take one course that focuses on a specific subject. You will, for example, take courses that focus on globalisation, public policy, leadership and HRM, international migration, network governance and international development issues. These courses will enable you to analyse social challenges from different perspectives, and understand the different roles, perceptions and interests of relevant actors. Furthermore, you will follow courses in research methods to acquire the skills and knowledge you need to conduct research on social challenges and the management of those social challenges. Each period will be concluded with an examination of that specific course. This schedule enables you to focus fully on one course, rather than dividing your attention between multiple courses.


The courses consist of both plenary lectures and small-scale seminars. This approach is effective because in the seminars the abstract theories are made more tangible by applying them to interesting cases and real-world problems. Alongside the courses you will participate in skills sessions (practicums) where you learn the academic skills needed to analyse, research and contribute to managing the social challenges, such as interviewing, negotiating, research design and writing an advisory report. The courses, including the lecturers and seminars, as well as the skills sessions focus on the same subject. Read more about our teaching method in the bachelor.

Upon graduating you will receive a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Administration. This degree provides you with an excellent foundation to pursue a master degree in a related field at Erasmus University Rotterdam or elsewhere.

First year

The first year consists of courses that help you build knowledge of social challenges (for example globalisation, public policy, organisation and management, and international law) and how to manage or research them (such as research design and organisation & management). All courses include plenary lectures as well as small-scale seminars. In the first year several seminars are organised according to the problem-based learning method, meaning you will apply theoretical knowledge by solving problems. Through our extensive programme, you will acquire academic and professional skills that are essential for a successful academic and professional career. 

Second year

During your second year, you will develop more in-depth knowledge and further improve your skills. You follow courses in political science, international migration, global development issues, qualitative research methods and network governance. At the end of the year, you will use the knowledge you will have acquired on research methods and the (management of) social challenges to conduct your own research in a small group. You will report on your findings in a research paper.

Third year

The third and final year of the bachelor programme starts with a minor which allows you to specialise in a field of your choice. You can choose to follow a minor at Erasmus University, go on exchange and study at one of our partner universities, or do an internship at an international public organisation.

If you opt to do an internship it is your own responsibility to find and arrange the internship. In the second half of the year, you will delve deeper into the management of social challenges by taking courses in global and European governance, technology, policy and society and management consultancy. You will conclude the bachelor programme by writing a thesis on a relevant topic of your choice.

The curriculum

The curriculum is subject to change. No rights can be derived from this information (including the information via the hyperlinks).