Global History and International Relations

The specialisation Global History and International Relations highlights the rise and fall of empires and the emergence of international relations. In addition, it focuses on paradoxical processes of cultural homogenisation and increasing emphasis on cultural diversity in debates on national histories and heritage programmes. 

Students about the programme

Julie Küpperfahrenberg

“Here I had the feeling that my knowledge about history could be transformed into actual contributions to solve political problems and crises."                                 Click on the picture for Julie's story. 

Mark Straver

"If you value personal attention, excellent and very involved teachers and flexibility, this is the programme for you."

                                          Click on the picture for Mark's story. 

Tara Lewis 

"That is one of the beauties of studying History, things rarely turn out the way you thought they would."


Click on the picture for Tara's story. 

International relations: a historical, cultural, and political concern

Nation-states generate various perspectives on the course of history, influencing the way they enter the world’s political stage. In the master specialisation Global History and International Relations at Erasmus University Rotterdam you will investigate how and why people, regions, nations, or empires behave like they do. By studying the development of different global histories you learn to understand how history is often a cultural, religious, social or political narrative created to legitimize nation states, conflicts, cultural identities or world domination. At the end of your Master you will be able to answer the following questions: 

  • How did the United States influence Dutch popular culture and technology in the 20th century?
  • What do diplomatic papers and human rights reports tell us about World War II and the Soviet Union stimulating nationalistic passions in Yugoslavia?
  • How can we trace the roots of the Arab spring back to social, economic and geopolitical developments during the Cold War?
  • Why do rising economies like China and India currently challenge military, political and economic power in the world? 

Five reasons to choose History of Society at the EUR

  • In 2016 the Master History of Society has been chosen best history Master of the Netherlands by both the magazine Elsevier and the Keuzegids
  • Learn while being in the field, go to archives and museums to find journals or protest pamphlets that will help you to build your cases. 
  • Study in an international environment! According to the Times Higher Education, the Erasmus University is one of the 200 most international universities worldwide. 
  • A master in History allows you to work in many types of working environments. Whether you want to become a journalist, ambition a career in politics, or as a scientist, this master will prepare you thoroughly. 
  • Studying history in Rotterdam means living in a city with an interesting past and a dynamic present.

Methods: to the archives!

You will go to archives, museums and libraries, looking for journals, letters or novels and protest pamphlets to build your cases. Based on such sources, you will learn how the public sphere has changed. Furthermore, you will learn how you can use interesting sources such as paper archives, digital databases, oral history and political documents for your own research.