Western Europe Study Tour
Full course description
The Western Europe Study Tour offers students a unique opportunity to explore Western Europe from the inside out, with a focus on doing business in the EU in light of fast changing political and economic conditions. When the member countries are viewed as a whole, the European Union is one of the world’s largest economies. Ongoing events like the refugee crisis and Brexit have shown us that the EU is also an ever evolving organisation with many political and economic ramifications for their member states and trading partners around the world. The European Union is facing important questions regarding EU leadership, the capacity of the EU to effectively deal with challenges facing it and its future: who is, in fact, in charge in the EU? What does the future hold for the European integration process? Gaining a better understanding of the European Union, the organisations that govern it and the companies that operate within its borders will provide you with a competitive advantage when dealing with this powerful group of nations.
The Western Europe Study Tour takes you to the most important institutions of the EU, key European businesses and powerful financial organisations across five dominant Western European nations: Germany (Frankfurt), France (Paris, Strasbourg, and Reims), Belgium (Brussels), the UK (London) and the Netherlands (The Hague and Amsterdam). You will get a first hand look behind the scenes with site visits and organised lectures from policy makers, consultancy agencies and European business leaders. In addition you will have the opportunity to go on exciting cultural excursions and explore these iconic cities through guided walking tours, museum visits, boat excursions and more! It really is a magnificent way to start your summer in Europe.
The study tour consists of a pre-tour orientation, business-related activities such as company visits, politics-related activities such as visits to the most important institutions of the European Union, cultural activities including visiting museums, landmarks, and historical sites, academic work including site-specific lectures on European business practices and governmental frameworks, and free time to allow for city exploration, shopping, etc.
Students are assessed on:
- Intercultural Communication Paper
- Active participation and professional behaviour
- Written Assignments throughout the study tour and after you return to Maastricht
The fee includes accommodation (double rooms in hotels), transportation, breakfast, and entrance fees for activities that are part of the programme. New starting dates in 2019 of the mandatory pre-departure activities, including an Intercultural Communication (ICC) workshop and orientation session to be confirmed.
STU2001 is followed by two companion courses, which provide a more in-depth exploration of the topics addressed during the study tour:
- BUS3002 Economics of European Integration. Challenges, policies & practices of the European business environment
- POL3004 Law and Politics - current topics in the EU
At the end of this study tour, students will:
- Have visited at least 10 European or related international institutions
- Have learned about key institutions of the European Union and how each contributes to the economic and political functioning of the EU
- Have become aware of the many interrelationships that politics and economics have in this complex economy and society
- Have gained a better understanding of the European business environment
- Have developed an appreciation for the strengths and weaknesses in the structure of the EU, especially as it relates to the recent economic crisis
- Have begun to understand how the EU fits into the world economically and politically
Students with a strong interest in political science and international relations or in economics and international business can select this Study Tour and will each digest their experiences from their own perspectives.
Students must meet the following prerequisites:
- Economics & Business students: Introductory microeconomics and/or macroeconomics.
- Political science & IR students: Intro to political science or international relations. Advanced course work in political science, history, or economics may be substituted with permission of CES.
A minimum of 15 students is required for the study tour to take place.
Students will receive various reading assignments during the Study Tour.