The Institut Barcelona d'Estudis Internacionals (IBEI) and the UPF Education Abroad Program have partnered to offer an International Relations Abroad program for undergraduate students. Adressed to students majoring in International Relations, Political Science, Legal Studies, Humanities, Economics or Journalism, this program aims to provide high quality teaching for students interested in increasing the understanding of today's world's challenges in the spheres of global politics, international relations and international security.
Being an European leader in graduate studies and advanced research within the framework of international studies, IBEI counts on excellent, well prepared international faculty to stimulate student's critical vision of globalization.


Key Areas

  • Development and Conflict Resolution
  • European Union Politics
  • Governance and Globalization
  • International Political Economy
  • International Relations of the Mediterranean
  • International Relations Theory
  • International Security studies
  • Latin American Politics

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Program Requirements

  • Applicants should have a 3.0 GPA minimum at their schools of origin.
  • Courses are taught either in Spanish or English.
  • Applicants should come from a university or study abroad provider that has a study abroad partnership with UPF.

Deadline for Applications

Fall: May 30 | Winter and Spring: October 30


Academic Structure

The IBEI-UPF International Relations program has an Academic Coordinator who will be in charge of advising students on-site. The program requires a full semester course load (normally 4-5 courses, equivalent to 24-30 ECTS credits). Students can combine courses from this program with the Barcelona Program for Interdisciplinary Studies and Spanish Language courses.



Academic Offerings


51672 - United Nations: International Peace and Security

Professor: Pol Bargues

Language: English

Credits: 6 ECTS

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The course is structured in two blocks. The first one introduces the United Nations, its goals, its main bodies and its decision-making process as a starting point. It then focuses on the UN architecture as a decisive international actor regarding international peace and security by analyzing: the UN institutional framework that deals with these issues (the UN Security Council, the Department of Peacekeeping Operations, the Department of Political Affairs, etc.); relevant aspects of the UN Charter in relation to this topic (Chapters VI and VII); and the historical evolution of how the UN has coped with peace and security issues. The second block explores one of the main tools the United Nations applies to maintain peace and security: the UN Peace Operations. This is done by focusing on theoretical debates that have shaped the missions over the time, by examining their evolution in nature and scope and by grasping historical examples (Sierra Leone, Haiti, Burundi, Timor-Leste, Afghanistan, etc...).

51733 - Geopolitical games: foreign policy of Russia and China

Professor: Anastassia V. Obydenkova

Language: English

Credits: 6 ECTS

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This course offers insights into understanding of foreign policy of so-called modern autocracies – China and Russia. Both states are located in Eurasia. They have overlapping interests, competing goals, and they face sometimes similar external challenges (such as, for example, democratic diffusion). The course offers insights into strategy of foreign policy of both states, contrasting and comparing their geopolitical battles. The course is structured in the following way: (1) theory of foreign policy analysis; (2) historical legacies in foreign policy of China and Russia; (3) goals and challenges of foreign policies of two states; (4) shared geopolitical space (struggle over the dominance in Central Asia); (5) impact and implications of their foreign policies.

The topics above will be discussed within the context of specific case-studies during the period of 1991-2018. This course examines comparatively the development of foreign policy of China and Russia over the last 30 years accounting for the presence of historical legacies and changing externalities. The course will focus on specific challenges faced by both states, such as, for example, democracy promotion (e.g., the enlargement of the EU in early 2000s). It will look at how both states deal with these challenges. Moreover, the course will focus on the analysis of the strategies employed by China and Russia in terms of their own cooperation as well as competition over geopolitical space.

51732 - History and Politics of Globalization

Professor: Yannis Karagiannis

Language: English

Credits: 6 ECTS

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How do individual citizens, organized groups, and political parties react to the internationalization of economic activity? Who promotes it and who fights against it? Who is more likely to be successful and who is more likely to fail in the pursuit of their goals? To answer these questions this course offers a historical introduction to international political economy. It is organized around three main sections. First, we present the most important theories and methods used to learn about the politics of international economics. Second, we use the theories and methods covered in the first section to review major developments in international economic relations from the 1860s to today. We focus mostly on three areas: international trade, international monetary relations, and international migration flows. Finally, we conduct original research, aiming to produce altogether new knowledge about the politics surrounding international economic developments

51713 - The EU in the World

Professor: Juan Pablo Soriano

Language: English

Credits: 6 ECTS

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How similar is the European Union (EU) compared to other countries such as the United States? Do they play similar roles in the world? How internal (Brexit) and external events (Trump) may affect the very nature of the EU and its foreign policies? This course studies the EU and its external activities through the discussion of key issues on the EU agenda placing a comparative focus on the United States. The first part of the course analyzes the historical evolution of the European polity and the decision-making of its external action. It raises questions about the geographical and political limits of Europe, what are the main drivers of its integration and tackles the issue of Brexit. The second part of the course deals with a variety of challenges of globalization that the EU faces in world politics: trade liberalization,global warming, energy supplies or international migration are some of the issues that will be tackled separately in different sessions. Finally, the last part analyzes the relations between the EU and other states and world regions: from the neighborhood in Eastern Europe and the Middle East to the major global players such as the United States.

51693 - International Business and Globalization

Professor: Francisco J. Granados

Language: English

Credits: 6 ECTS

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How does international business drive economic globalization and affect people across countries?  How do international business and current domestic and international political issues affect each other?  What challenges and opportunities do firms face operating internationally? How corporate social responsibility can contribute to sustainable development?  The course starts with an overview of economic globalization from a historical, political and sociological perspective, focusing on its most relevant aspects associated to international business: the role of states and international institutions (e.g., World Bank, IMF, EU) in the international economy; global economic crisis, socioeconomic development; inequalities within and across countries; international migration; domestic political debates referred to globalization.  The second part of the course considers key topics of international business emphasizing their corporate social responsibility component: management across different national political environments, internationalization and alliance strategies, global marketing, and global R&D and human resources management. These topics are mainly studied considering how the strategies of multinational firms may affect national and global sustainable development.