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Politics & Government×

Leiden University, Full Time Masters Degrees in Politics & Government

We have 16 Leiden University, Full Time Masters Degrees in Politics & Government

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The Master’s programme in African Studies at Leiden University is an advanced area studies qualification that combines world-class scholarship with practice-based learning. Read more

The Master’s programme in African Studies at Leiden University is an advanced area studies qualification that combines world-class scholarship with practice-based learning.

Customised learning

This multidisciplinary programme offers you the opportunity to explore the African continent from a wide range of perspectives: historical, literary, cultural, socio-economical and political. At Leiden, relevance and real-world issues are at the fore. During your programme you will analyse current events as they unfold and explore issues from a broad, comparative and global perspective. You will be able to pursue the issues and subject areas that interest you most by designing your own project and thesis.

Benefit from an international network

Taught by top scholars from the African Studies Centre (ASC), the Master’s programme in African Studies has a genuine area studies profile. During your studies you will gain access to the African Studies Centre’s extensive international network and high-profile events that will connect you to the leading researchers in the field. 

Internship in Africa

An important part of this Master's programme is a three-month internship at an organisation in Africa. This is your opportunity to test your new skills and ideas in practice while gaining invaluable cultural and professional experience. For your internship in Africa, you will receive funding from the Humanities Faculty’s Sustainable Humanities Internship Fund.




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The master programme in International Relations at Leiden University’s Faculty of Humanities offers a comprehensive understanding of the complexities defining today's world, providing an outstanding platform for a career in the international arena. Read more

The master programme in International Relations at Leiden University’s Faculty of Humanities offers a comprehensive understanding of the complexities defining today's world, providing an outstanding platform for a career in the international arena.

Define your area of expertise

Join the only master's programme in the Netherlands to offer five unique specialisations within the field of international relations. With a broad curriculum and flexible design, the International Relations programme allows you to tailor your degree to suit your career goals. Five specialisations are available, each with their own thematic focus, and each with further scope for customisation. You will be able to specialise in areas ranging from the European integration process to the global political economy.

Real-world Learning

At Leiden University, relevance and real-world issues are at the fore. During your master's programme, you explore the most current global events through a comparative, area studies lens. More than theory, you learn from professionals from some of the world's largest organisations. An important focus is developing your ability to conduct relevant, original and innovative research.

World-class expertise

The International Relations master is taught by leading academics at Leiden University as well as experts from our network of professionals. Small classes provide plenty of direct contact with all lecturers and a high-level of guidance and support. You will acquire the knowledge and critical-thinking skills that will help you excel in any given occupation.

Additional MA in International Affairs

During your studies, you are eligible to apply to the prestigious MA in International Affairs at the School of Advanced International Studies of Johns Hopkins University, Bologna.

Specialisations



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As crises arising from terrorism, civil war, and natural disasters dominate world news it is no surprise that security and crisis management - including the perception of risk - is at the top of the global societal and governance agenda. Read more

As crises arising from terrorism, civil war, and natural disasters dominate world news it is no surprise that security and crisis management - including the perception of risk - is at the top of the global societal and governance agenda.

What does this master's programme entail?

During this multidisciplinary career-relevant master’s programme you become familiar with the political and social dimensions of the governance of (in)security and crisis. You study contemporary security challenges from both local and global pointsof view and gain deep understanding of the ‘wicked problem’ of security and crisis topics in a complex and globalising world. The combination of theory, practical insights and analytical skills prepares you for work in public or private organisations.

Reasons to choose CSM at Leiden University

This MSc offers you unique multidisciplinary perspectives on the governance of security and crisis.

  • You learn from members of the Institute of Public Administration and Institute of Security & Global Affairs plus guest lecturers from many fields and organisations;
  • Your study is informed by the latest international, interdisciplinary research in security studies;
  • You study in The Hague, international city of peace and justice, home to many governmental/ NGO’s concerned with security issues.

Why Leiden University

Is CSM the right programme for you?

  • Are you driven to read the news each morning, fascinated by current events and their follow-on developments?
  • Can you think critically about complex societal issues?
  • Are you interested in combining a variety of academic perspectives and applying them to real-life issues?
  • Do you want to contribute to the discussion and practices around crisis and security management?
  • Are you able to form an informed opinion and communicate it clearly to a variety of audiences?

Then this is the programme for you!



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Want to understand how to address humankind’s most pressing issues - big challenges arising from climate change, technological innovation, economic and political crises - from the perspective of governance? The MSc in Public Administration is for you!. Read more

Want to understand how to address humankind’s most pressing issues - big challenges arising from climate change, technological innovation, economic and political crises - from the perspective of governance? The MSc in Public Administration is for you!

What does this master programme entail?

The main question you focus on in the MPA is: How can we address humankind’s most pressing problems from the perspective of governance? Governance has many definitions; within the context of the MPA it concerns the management, steering, and coordination of political, administrative, economic, and social actors, as well as the formal and informal regimes and policy processes within which they act, towards addressing collective social problems at regional, national, and international levels.

Three reasons to choose Public Administration at Leiden University

  • The Leiden MPA takes a distinctive approach: governance is examined from a multi-level perspective with the object of effectively developing governance solutions to societal challenges. Taught in The Hague, a hub of international governance organisations.
  • 3 unique specialisations: Economics & Governance, International & European Governance, and Public Management.
  • Strong academic orientation; faculty drawn from Leiden’s Institute of Public Management with guest lecturers from the field.

Public Administration: the right programme for you?

  • Are you fascinated in watching the whole context of dilemmas and challenges experienced by governments and societies worldwide?
  • Do you want to address these issues from the perspective of governance?
  • Do you have affinity with a specific area of governance, as addressed by the specialisations in this programme – like economics and governance, international governance, or public management?
  • Do you want to contribute to research and practice in this crucial area?

Then this programme is for you!



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In today’s unpredictable political climate international relations are increasingly important. The MSc in International Relations and Diplomacy is uniquely designed to bring you multidisciplinary insights and practical skills essential to negotiation and diplomacy. Read more

In today’s unpredictable political climate international relations are increasingly important. The MSc in International Relations and Diplomacy is uniquely designed to bring you multidisciplinary insights and practical skills essential to negotiation and diplomacy.

In the current era of global interdependence, collaborative efforts are needed to meet the most pressing challenges in international politics, security and economics. This unique Master’s programme is collaborative in nature: taught jointly by Leiden University’s Institute for Security and Global Affairs (Faculty Governance and Global Affairs), Institute of Political Science (Faculty of Social Sciences) and the Netherlands Institute of International Relations Clingendael.

Choose International Relations and Diplomacy at Leiden University:

  • Your understanding and practice of diplomacy are stimulated by a unique combination of academic insights into international relations and political science, plus essential practical skills.
  • Located in The Hague, this MSc puts you in the centre of European and global politics.
  • The shared knowledge and top reputation of Leiden University combined with the expertise and renown of Clingendael offers a prestigious programme that can really launch your career.


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Choice is at the very heart of politics. War or peace, left or right, liberty or security, sovereignty or integration, consensus or conflict—choices matter. Read more

Choice is at the very heart of politics. War or peace, left or right, liberty or security, sovereignty or integration, consensus or conflict—choices matter. Choice is also key to your education. Choose an intellectually challenging programme in which you develop your knowledge and expertise in the study of politics. Choose a respected, selective programme that fits your future ambitions. Choose the MSc programme in Political Science at Leiden University.

By doing an MSc in Political Science in Leiden or The Hague, you will benefit from an advanced grounding in the fundamentals of political analysis and advanced training in essential academic and professional skills. There are six specialisations and two cities from which to choose.

Specialisations



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What does this master’s programme entail?. In this advanced master’s programme, you will gain a thorough understanding of the legislation that governs international relations in an increasingly complex global society. Read more

What does this master’s programme entail?

In this advanced master’s programme, you will gain a thorough understanding of the legislation that governs international relations in an increasingly complex global society. You will learn in-depth about a wide range of aspects that affect our world, in addition to getting the opportunity to specialise your area of study. Through focused seminars and workshops, you will be challenged to develop your own views on the role and functioning of public international law.

For this programme, you will choose one of the following specialisations:

To view the full programme outline, please choose the link to one of the specialisations.

Professional skills

During the programme, you will develop the skills to:

  • thoroughly analyse and interpret legal sources, literature and cases
  • research and formulate an independent opinion on international legal questions
  • clearly present your findings both orally and in writing to legal specialists as well as non-lawyers
  • actively participate in academic debate
  • apply this advanced academic knowledge of public international law in a professional context

Is Public International Law the right programme for you?

The Public International Law programme is a good fit for you if you have a sincere interest in the field and:

  • you are a qualified lawyer who would like to enhance your career prospects
  • you are an excellent student who has completed your legal studies in your home country with sufficient knowledge of Public International Law or
  • you have professional experience in the field

The programme caters to those who are working in or would like to pursue a career in international organisations, governmental institutions, international non-governmental organisations or in academia. You can follow the programme full-time for one year or part-time for two years.

Courses

Core courses

Specialisation courses: International Criminal Law 

Specialisation courses: Peace, Justice and Development 

Please select one of the specialisations to view the full prospectus and a more detailed programme description.

Specialisations



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The Advanced Studies programme in International Tax Law will provide you with the knowledge and skills to navigate the many interrelated areas of international tax law in a constantly changing field. Read more

The Advanced Studies programme in International Tax Law will provide you with the knowledge and skills to navigate the many interrelated areas of international tax law in a constantly changing field.

What does this master’s programme entail?

The programme offers insights into the main topics of international taxation. Some of the many subjects that are covered in the programme include:

  • Tax Treaties
  • Transfer Pricing
  • EU Tax Law
  • International Corporate Tax Planning

The curriculum is constantly being updated in light of relevant developments in the field, such as the OECD BEPS project and the EU Anti-Tax Avoidance Directive.

Reasons to choose the Adv LLM in International Tax Law at Leiden University?

As a student of the Advanced Studies in International Tax Law programme, you will benefit from:

  1. Expert instructors: You will be taught by expert staff and guest lecturers who are widely respected in the field of international tax law.
  2. International environment: In addition to the international focus of the curriculum, the unique blend of students and instructors that represent all continents makes our programme a truly global experience.
  3. Excellent reputation: Leiden Law School has developed its reputation for excellence by combining a high level of academic teaching with acclaimed and innovative research. Its tradition of quality attracts prestigious professors and professionals from around the world who teach you in a challenging and supportive atmosphere.

More reasons to study International Tax Law at Leiden University.

Is the Adv LLM in International Tax Law the right programme for you?

This advanced Master of Laws programme could be for you if you are a Dutch or international:

  • recent graduate from a university law or economics programme with a substantial legal orientation
  • professional who has worked in private tax law practice for a number of years or
  • professional who has worked with taxes at a governmental organisation (typically a Ministry of Finance or a Revenue Service)


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What effects have globalisation had on international trade? What are the essential elements of international business contracts? When there is a dispute concerning a cross-border business transaction, which country's or region's laws apply and which court has jurisdiction? Learn how to deal with questions like these from both an international comparative perspective. Read more

What effects have globalisation had on international trade? What are the essential elements of international business contracts? When there is a dispute concerning a cross-border business transaction, which country's or region's laws apply and which court has jurisdiction? Learn how to deal with questions like these from both an international comparative perspective.

What does this master's programme entail?

Globalisation and increasing international trade have led to the rapid internationalisation of civil and commercial law, thus forming a complex and multi-layered discipline. Leiden University’s International Civil and Commercial Law programme deals with different levels of international, EU and national laws as they coexist and interact with one another. This programme will equip you with the skills necessary to fully understand and apply such intertwined layers to domain-specific legal issues.

Reasons to choose International Civil and Commercial Law at Leiden University?

As a student of the advanced master’s European and International Business Law, you will benefit from:

  1. Comprehensive approach: This programme is truly all-inclusive in its quest to shed light on transnational, international and comparative aspects of law.
  2. Unique case studies: Many lecturers in the ICCL programme work in civil and commercial law practice and use their real-life cases to enhance your learning experience.
  3. Excellent reputation: Leiden Law School has developed its reputation for excellence by combining a high level of academic teaching with acclaimed and innovative research. Its tradition of quality attracts prestigious professors and professionals from around the world who teach you in a challenging and supportive atmosphere.

More reasons to study of International Civil and Commercial Law at Leiden University.

Is International Civil and Commercial Law the right programme for you?

Are you interested in gaining an in-depth understanding of the intertwined layers of international, EU, UN and national laws which make up the complex area of international civil and commercial law? Then this could be the programme for you.

This programme is a good fit if you are a law graduate wishing to pursue a challenging master’s study or a legal practitioner wishing to specialise in various private and commercial law aspects of cross-border trading, contracting and competing.

You can either complete this programme in one year as a full-time student or in two years as a part-time student.



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What are the rights of the child when it comes to forced marriages or protection against violence or exploitation? Which rights do refugee children have in their host communities? And how can children’s rights be legally enforced in various countries across the globe?. Read more

What are the rights of the child when it comes to forced marriages or protection against violence or exploitation? Which rights do refugee children have in their host communities? And how can children’s rights be legally enforced in various countries across the globe?

What does this master’s programme entail?

Advanced Studies in International Children’s Rights provides in-depth specialisation and teaches you to respond to the increasing international, regional and national legal developments in relation to children. During the programme, you will address highly topical and global issues related to children and their human rights. You will also take a theoretical, legal and practical approach to exploring various fields, including:

  • child and family
  • migration
  • juvenile justice
  • digital technologies

During this programme, you will learn to:

  • look at international children’s rights from a comparative perspective
  • explore the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, as well as major regional legal instruments concerning the rights and status of children
  • assess the impact of international children’s rights on domestic jurisdiction
  • address the most significant challenges with regard to children’s rights implementation
  • analyse the complex roles of the different actors (children, parents, state and non-state actors), and their interrelation in various legal contexts
  • critically reflect on the potential and limitations of international and regional standards for the legal protection of children

Reasons to choose International Children’s Rights at Leiden University?

  1. Only one in the world: The programme prides itself as being the only programme in the world offering a legal degree (LL.M.) on international children’s rights.
  2. Excellent reputation: The Department of Child Law at Leiden Law School enjoys a strong international reputation for its high-quality education and research.
  3. Expert instructors: The academic staff members are renowned legal experts in children’s rights. You will also interact with prominent guest lecturers from international organisations, including the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.

More reasons to study International Children’s Rights at Leiden.

Is International Children’s Rights the right programme for you?

Are you interested in learning how to promote and protect the rights of children around the world? This programme will provide the specialist knowledge and professional skills you need to effectively protect the rights of children worldwide.

To be a good fit for this programme, one of the following should apply:

  • you are a legal professional
  • you have a full law degree (offering access to legal practice) or
  • you have a degree at an equivalent level in another discipline, with a sufficient background in or understanding of law


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The Advanced Studies in European Tax Law is a small-scale programme. It will provide you with a strong foundation in EU tax law and the option to specialise in direct taxation, indirect taxation or state aid law. Read more

The Advanced Studies in European Tax Law is a small-scale programme. It will provide you with a strong foundation in EU tax law and the option to specialise in direct taxation, indirect taxation or state aid law.

What does this master's programme entail?

In the master’s programme in European Tax Law, you will develop a firm grasp of key European case law and fundamental legal concepts. You will also become familiar with prominent scholars in the field of European tax law. At the same time, you will acquire the skills needed to translate EU tax law into practice in a commercial, public sector or judicial setting.

Reasons to choose European Tax Law at Leiden University?

As a student of the European Tax Law programme, you will benefit from:

  1. Expert instructors: The lecturing staff are highly regarded for their teaching and research, and many also work as independent practitioners. This ensures that current developments in EU tax law are integrated into the curriculum.
  2. Small-scale teaching: The programme’s small class sizes allow you to really get to know your professors and fellow students and to actively participate in the discussions.
  3. Excellent reputation: Leiden Law School has developed its reputation for excellence by combining a high level of academic teaching with acclaimed and innovative research. Its tradition of quality attracts prestigious professors and professionals from around the world who teach you in a challenging and supportive atmosphere.


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When human rights are violated by a particular state, is it more effective to use the national, regional or international human rights protection mechanisms to address the issue? And what mechanism will probably be most effective in addressing specific types of human rights violations?. Read more

When human rights are violated by a particular state, is it more effective to use the national, regional or international human rights protection mechanisms to address the issue? And what mechanism will probably be most effective in addressing specific types of human rights violations?

What does this master's programme entail?

Human rights are at risk in all societies. Though various national, regional and international laws and treaties have been developed to protect the human rights of all people, some laws are more effective than others in particular situations. In this programme, you will compare the functionality of different protection mechanisms that are currently in place. You will also learn how to apply them successfully in different political, social and cultural settings.

Reasons to choose European and International Human Rights Law at Leiden University?

As a student of the European and International Human Rights Law Advanced Studies programme, you will benefit from:

  1. Expert instructors: In addition to learning from the expertise of our academic staff, you will participate in lectures, masterclasses and workshops given by renowned human rights experts working for the UN, the EU, NGOs or other organisations.
  2. Life-changing work: You will learn how to develop your own voice to speak for people in the world who may have otherwise been silenced. You will become an effective advocate for restoring the basic rights and fundamental freedoms that are inherent to all human beings.
  3. Excellent reputation: Leiden Law School has an excellent reputation in human rights research and education.

Is European and International Human Rights Law the right programme for you?

Would you like to actively work to protect the rights of people across the globe? Are you interested in applying your knowledge of human rights law to real-world political, social and legal settings? Then this is the programme for you. You should also have a sufficient background in law.



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The European Union is one of the most influential international organizations in the world. But how does it impact on governance, enterprise and innovation within a global economy, in the area of business law? And how does EU law interact with that of other international organisations?. Read more

The European Union is one of the most influential international organizations in the world. But how does it impact on governance, enterprise and innovation within a global economy, in the area of business law? And how does EU law interact with that of other international organisations?

What does this master's programme entail?

As the EU passes a growing number of economic regulations, these mandates increasingly interact with global trade regulations and with those of its Member States. Businesses that operate internationally are faced with various layers of jurisdiction that sometimes have an unclear hierarchy. In this programme, you will learn how to decipher the complex hierarchy of European and international business law.

You will learn to:

  • apply your knowledge of the law, your experience and your skills in a professional environment
  • formulate research questions and appropriate strategies for answering these questions and testing hypotheses
  • apply adequate legal scientific research methods and tools and to present and communicate results and findings, both in an academic as well as in professional context

Reasons to choose European and International Business Law at Leiden University?

As a student of the advanced master’s European and International Business Law, you will benefit from:

1.      Excellent reputation: This programme has more than two decades of history and is offered through Leiden Law School’s Europa Institute. The teaching is grounded in the Law School’s distinguished research programme ‘The progression of EU law: accommodating change and upholding values.’

2.      Expert instructors: Courses are taught by expert staff with an international reputation as well as by guest lecturers who hold senior positions with legal firms, international courts or business organisations.

3.     Moot court skills: You will have the possibility of participating in the European Law Moot Court (ELMC), the most renowned competition in the field of EU law. If you advance to the oral round of the ELMC competition, you will receive training in research, analysis, legal writing and pleading in a simulation of an EU law case. If interested, you may have the opportunity to present at the ELSA Moot Court, which relates to the field of WTO law.

More reasons to study European and International Business Law at Leiden University.

Is European and International Business Law the right programme for you?

Are you interested in learning how to navigate conflicts between international trade law and European laws as they reflect on global businesses? This programme will provide you with all the tools to strengthen your keen commercial and business sense.

You should have a law degree or a sufficient background in law to qualify for admission.

You can either complete this programme in one year as a full-time student or in two years as a part-time student.



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Public International Law is a one-year Master’s specialisation at the internationally acclaimed Leiden Law School at Leiden University. Read more

Public International Law is a one-year Master’s specialisation at the internationally acclaimed Leiden Law School at Leiden University. The programme focuses on legislation that governs international relations in an increasingly complex global society.

Course detail

In this programme you will gain a thorough understanding of the fundamental doctrines of public international law, studying different perspectives from theory and practice. We will also challenge you to develop your own views on the role and functioning of law in international society.

As a result of globalisation and international interdependence, international law is changing. Whereas in the past, this law was limited to relations between states, in recent years, organisations, peoples, business and individuals have also become part of the realm of international law. Who is entitled to intervene in situations of mass violations of human rights? Which means are allowed to combat international terrorism? Can the international community develop governance mechanisms, including law, to deal with problems such as global climate change?

Format

This Master’s is taught in Leiden and at Campus The Hague. A unique feature of the programme is that it makes use of the expertise available in the various international institutions located in The Hague, such as the International Court of Justice, the International Criminal Tribunal for Yugoslavia, the International Criminal Court and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.

Careers

The Public International Law Master’s programme offered at LeidenUniversity will provide you with a broad academic training. You will gain the knowledge and skills necessary to pursue a career within:

• your national legal system;

• international law departments of national institutions;

• international governmental or non-governmental organisations;

• internationally operating business enterprises;

• academia.



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European Law is a one-year Master’s specialisation at the internationally renowned Leiden Law School at Leiden University. The programme distinguishes itself by its multidisciplinary approach, covering substantive and institutional EU law as well as economic law and human rights within a EU perspective. Read more

European Law is a one-year Master’s specialisation at the internationally renowned Leiden Law School at Leiden University. The programme distinguishes itself by its multidisciplinary approach, covering substantive and institutional EU law as well as economic law and human rights within a EU perspective.

Course detail

European law is an exciting and rapidly developing discipline. There are few areas of national law and policy within Europe that remain untouched by the influence of European legislation. The scope of EU law, however is even wider, as Europe is becoming an increasingly important actor on the international stage.

In this programme, you will focus on the various aspects of European Law, as well as the European protection of human rights. You will study topics ranging from EU competition law to EU external relations law, from European social policy to internal market regulations and EU institutional law. You will gain in-depth knowledge about these aspects, while at the same time developing the professional skills needed in a EU-related legal career.

Purpose

Our aim in this programme is to provide you with in-depth academic knowledge, and to equip you with the professional skills needed in a EU-related legal career. For this purpose, teaching is done in small, seminar-style classes, with ample attention for practical skills in special `privatissimum’ and `practicum’ classes. Our programme attracts students from within and outside of the EU, which makes for a truly international atmosphere.

Programme

The European Law Master’s specialisation is founded on the Europa Institute’s research, ‘Securing the Rule of Law in a World of Multi-level Jurisdiction’. This has three components (‘Trias Europea’): the institutional structure of the Union, the protection of fundamental rights in an integrated Europe, and the regulation of economic relations. These three topics are included in every component of this programme, addressing the question as to how the rule of law (i.e. democracy, protection of human rights, adequate legal remedies) can be maintained while the law is developed at several levels.

Treaty of Lisbon

You will study the institutional structure of the Union (looking at the present Treaty structure as well as at proposed reforms in the Treaty of Lisbon) and the manner in which compliance with the fundamental rights within the legal order of the Union is ensured. In addition, you will learn about the position of the European Union in the world, the relation between EU law and national law, and the way in which trade and commerce is regulated by the EU.

Careers

The European Law Master’s programme offered by Europa Institute at Leiden will provide you with the skills necessary for a successful legal career in the private or public sector. Our alumni have found employment in:

• European institutions, such as the Council of Europe;

• international organisations, such as the United Nations, the OECD and the OCSE;

• national and local government;

• governmental and non-governmental organisations, such as UNHCR, IOM, Amnesty International and Greenpeace

• corporate companies;

• major law firms in Amsterdam, London, Brussels and Luxembourg;

• academia.



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