European and Eurasian Studies

Western Europe
Russia and Eurasia
Central and Eastern Europe

Study trips to destinations like London, Brussels, and Sarajevo offer the opportunity to visit institutions and employers across Europe.

The program equips concentrators to analyze what is happening in contemporary Europe and Eurasia, including Russia, and to understand the region's role in the world.

Concentrators analyze the trends, events, and ideas that have shaped today's Europe and Eurasia.

Program Activities
Washington D.C.
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Students engage in the study of modern European and Eurasian history, political economy and current affairs. The program equips concentrators to analyze not only what is happening in the European Union and its member states, but also on other nations in Eastern Europe and Eurasia, including Russia, the Caucasus, and Central Asia and to understand the region's role in the world. 

Students may begin the EES program in either Bologna or Washington, DC. The program differs from other concentrations at the school because it does not have any required coursework. Students work with their program advisor and members of the senior faculty to design a course of study to prepare for three comprehensive exams that must be completed to meet the degree requirements. EES concentrators complete a program capstone by reporting on their summer internship experience or conducting an oral examination with members of the senior faculty.

EES & MES students visited the Botanical Gardens of Kuala Lumpur during a Spring Break 2017 study trip to Malaysia to learn about Islamic finance.
EES & MES students with EES Director and Prof. Erik Jones at the Islamic Financial Services Board in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Window view at the SAIS Europe campus in Bologna, Italy (Fall 2017). Shared by a current EES student.
EES students at the Spring 2016 book presentation of The Oxford Handbook of Italian Politics
In May 2016, EES hosted a visit by NATO PA delegation to the school for talks with Dean Vali Nasr, EES Prof Christopher Chivvis, and students on security challenges.
Members of the EES class of 2016 at the school's Commencement Reception.
The Russia-Eurasia Club visited Ambassador Kadyr Toktogulov at the Kyrgyz Embassy in April 2016.
EES students in Washington discussing transnational interest groups and national democracies with EES students in SAIS Europe via videoteleconference during a trans-atlantic research seminar lecture in Spring 2016.
SAIS Europe Class of 2015 with Director Erik Jones and Associate Director Kathryn Knowles
The Vienna Ball is a popular event for EES students in Bologna and several attend every year.
EES students in Brussels for summer 2015 internships. Pictured with SAIS Europe Prof. Fillippo Taddei at an AmCham EU event.
EES students Vincenz Klemm, Brian Fox, Marko Grujicic, and Tine Carmelit, along with fellow SAIS students Sandra Zuniga and Kira Gartzou-Katsouyanni at the 2015 European Student Conference at Yale University.
EES students completing their summer internships in Brussels joined alumni for a networking happy hour
The annual EES Spring Welcome Brunch provides students, faculty, and staff a great opportunity to reconnect after the winter break.
EES Students with Jose Maria Aznar, former President of the Government of Spain.
EES Students and Faculty enjoying the annual EES Spring Semester Brunch.
Students and Faculty at the Annual EES Spring Semester Brunch
EES Professors (L-R) Dana Allin, Christopher Chivvis, and EES Director Erik Jones
EES Students with Prof. Bruce Parrott, Professor of Russian and Eurasian Studies
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Program Activities


The "Third Country Experience"

Brussels, Bucharest or Bologna? Madrid, Milan or Moscow? London, Luxembourg, Warsaw or Zagreb?
Which of these cities will be your summer internship destination?
The unique Johns Hopkins SAIS model of providing a trans-Atlantic education means that students have the opportunity to study international relations first from a European perspective in Bologna and then from an American one in Washington DC One of the goals of the school's European and Eurasian Studies Program in particular is to provide a “third country experience” during the summer between the first and second years of the program, allowing concentrators to experience living and working in their region of study.
This year the program has secured over 50 internship positions across the region in policy research, public affairs consulting, international business development, financial and macroeconomic analysis, political movements and more. Opportunities are specifically designed for students and offer a content-rich experience with senior-level mentors.
Applications are open to MA, MAIA and MIPP candidates of all years and concentrations on all three campuses. Priority is given to first-year students in the EES program, though graduating students interested in working in the region are also considered since summer “exit-internships” are often a way to get a foot on the vieux continent. All recruiting is done through the SAISworks system.
Questions may be directed to Kathryn Knowles, Associate Director of European and Eurasian Studies (


European and Eurasian Research Seminar

Students in this seminar conducted between Bologna and Washington via video conference develop an original question and make a scholarly contribution to the field. MA and PhD candidates learn research methods, analyze a current issue in the region and present their work during an authors’ workshop with program faculty

Program Activities: Washington D.C.

European and Eurasian Studies Distinguished Lecture Series

The EES Distinguished Lecture Series in Washington is hosted by EES faculty and Author-in-Residence, James Mann. The series features global leaders and experts of the region. Lectures are held on select Tuesday evenings and open to the school's community and the public. RSVP for upcoming events at

Russia/Eurasia Forum

The Russia/Eurasia Forum meets bi-weekly and is hosted by Professor Bruce Parrott. Experts from around the Washington, DC area give presentations on topics ranging from Religion in Contemporary Russian Politics, the Global Revolution in Natural Gas, to the changing relationship between Europe and Russia. Lectures are open to the school's community and the public. RSVP for upcoming events at

Current Events Seminars

Students have the opportunity to gather at this informal seminar led by Professor Charles Gati, and discuss current events in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. The seminar also provides students with the opportunity to present current research and receive feedback from both faculty and their peers. Current Events seminars are open to all Johns Hopkins SAIS Washington students and are held on select Wednesdays, 12:30-1:45pm. Contact Cristina Benitez,, for more information.


For program updates and event alerts, follow us on Twitter @SAIS_EES

Program Activities: Europe

European and Eurasian Studies Seminar Series

EES organizes evening seminars at SAIS Europe as part of the faculty research seminar series. The events provide unique opportunities for students to interact with visiting scholars and practioners from across Europe in an informal setting. Recent series themes include "Europe's Security Challenges", "New Trends in Central Banking and Finance", and "Profits & Politics: Business-State Relations in the Wider Europe." The 2016-2017 series on "Understanding the New Europe" is co-hosted by our EES Director, Erik Jones, and Associate Professor of International Political Economy, Matthias Matthijs.

The Bologna Institute for Policy Research (BIPR)

The BIPR is the research division of SAIS Europe. Its purpose is to promote problem-centered, interdisciplinary research in international policy by drawing upon the global network of Johns Hopkins SAIS faculty, students and scholars. The work of the BIPR is made available to the public with the goal of providing a pivotal forum for thought and debate in international public policy. BIPR employs student research assistants each semester to manage its event reports program and disseminate content from the faculty research seminar series to the wider policy community. Students working on BIPR have been key contributors to a number of promotional projects at SAIS Europe, including the launch of faculty-authored books.


The Center for Constitutional Studies and Democratic Development (CCSDD)

The CCSDD is a research partnership between SAIS Europe and the School of Law at the University of Bologna. The CCSDD conducts research and training in the field of comparative constitutional law, focusing on countries undergoing a process of democratic transition. Through conferences, workshops, publications, summer schools, study trips, and speaker series, the CCSDD addresses issues of civil society development and legal reform. The Center's current research focuses on EU enlargement, contemporary political and constitutional transformations in North Africa, the role of constitutional courts in Central Asia, as well as electoral management bodies. Each year, the CCSDD conducts a number of programs including the "European Union and Legal Reform" Summer School in Montenegro, the Sarajevo Study Trip, and the CCSDD Lecture Series. SAIS Europe students are hired as interns to work on research and teaching-related projects.





European and Eurasian Studies Program Learning Goals and Objectives

Entering Class 2017-2018                                     
MA students must take the equivalent of 16 non-language courses (64 credits) in order to graduate. Those students who are approved for dual degree or advanced standing may only need to take 12 courses (48 credits) or 14 courses (56 credits) as approved by Academic Affairs.



MA students concentrating in European and Eurasian Studies (EES) design their own program of study to achieve fixed learning outcomes as set out in the program syllabus. These learning outcomes are evaluated in three comprehensive exams (in lieu of the Core exam requirement). The program does not have any required courses. Candidates work with their program adviser and senior faculty to plan courses and independent readings that will prepare them for the comprehensive exams.

To view the EES Curriculum Matrix, click HERE.
Russia and Eurasia Track: Students who choose the Russia and Eurasia track within the concentration complete Comp III in this area and must achieve Russian language for proficiency.
Comprehensive Examinations
Comprehensive exams are given three to four times per year on both campuses and are graded as pass/fail. Exams may be taken multiple times without penalty. The European and Eurasian Studies comprehensive exams are based on the EES syllabus which sets out the topics and offers a bibliography for each written exam.
Comp I: Modern European History and Ideas
The purpose of this examination is to expose EES concentrators to a broad interpretative framework for understanding the formation and evolution of the international systems of states. Students without a strong background in European history should take or audit the specialized history core course, Evolution of the International System. Students usually take this exam after their first or second semester, depending on their campus of study.
Comp II: European Political Economies
The purpose of this examination is to make sure that students understand the essentials of governance – including economic governance – across the region. This exam encompasses the domestic political economies of the four major Western European nation states, the European Union and European integration generally, the problems of transition in Central and Eastern Europe—including Russia, and Europe’s relations with the US and global economies. Candidates take this exam before or after their third semester.
Comp III: Europe and the World Since 1945
This comprehensive examination covers the relationship between European countries and the outside world. That relationship is both country-specific and regional. This exam has three different elements. The first concerns the international political economy, which is arguably where Europe is most influential. The second looks at the regional dimension of Europe’s relations with the outside world, and draws on the history of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) as well as the European Union. The third focuses on the comparative foreign policies of European countries. Students usually take Comp III at the end of their third of forth semester.
Comp III: Russian and Eurasian Studies
This comprehensive exam is designed for students in the Russia and Eurasia track. It covers the rise and fall of communism in Russia and Eurasia and allows students to focus on two of the following sub-areas: Post-Communist Politics, Post-Communist Economies, Post-Communist National Identities and Ethnic Relations, Post-Communist Civil Societies, and Post-Communist Foreign and Security Policies. Students usually take Comp III at the end of their third of fourth semester.



Students must complete 16 credits. The four required courses are:

  • Microeconomics
  • Macroeconomics (prerequisite or concurrent: Microeconomics)
  • International Trade Theory (prerequisite: Microeconomics)
  • International Monetary Theory (prerequisite: Macroeconomics)

If a student passes a waiver exam in one of these areas, the student must take a replacement International Economics program course(s) to fulfill the concentration requirement.

Starting with the entering class of Fall 2017, students who pass Microeconomics in Pre-Term will have the concentration reduced to 12 credits, but still must complete Macroeconomics, International Trade Theory, and International Monetary Theory (or a replacement course(s) if waiver exam(s) passed). The Pre-Term Microeconomics course is not for credit and is not factored into the GPA.

Beyond the requirements, many students choose to pursue an International Economics Specialization in one of four areas of economics. Students may also choose to specialize in Emerging Markets.

Concentration GPA Requirement
Students must achieve a combined GPA of at least 2.67 in four (or three if Microeconomics is passed in Pre-Term) required International Economics program courses or they must retake the course(s) until a 2.67 concentration GPA is achieved. In the standard case, the concentration GPA will be the average of the grades of Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, International Trade Theory, and International Monetary Theory.

If one or more of the four standard courses is waived, the school will use the highest grade(s) from any eligible replacement International Economics program course(s) to compute the International Economics concentration GPA.



Students must complete one course from the list below.

  • Statistical Methods for Business & Economics 
  • Econometrics (prerequisite Statistical Methods for Business & Economics)
  • Applied Econometrics (prerequisite Econometrics)
  • Macro Econometrics (prerequisite Econometrics)
  • Risk Analysis and Modeling
  • Quantitative Global Economics (prerequisite International Monetary Theory)
  • Credit Markets & Credit Risk (prerequisite Corporate Finance)

Students may not double-count the same course toward the Quantitative Reasoning requirement and as an International Economics concentration course and vice-versa.

If a student passes the statistics waiver exam, the student must take an alternate course from the list above to fulfill the Quantitative Reasoning requirement.

Starting with the entering class of Fall 2017, students who pass Statistical Methods for Business & Economics in Pre-Term will have fulfilled the Quantitative Reasoning requirement. The Pre-Term course is not for credit and is not factored into the GPA.



European and Eurasian Studies concentrators do not need to take any core courses/exams, but they must pass the three program comprehensive exams. EES concentrators substitute Comp I and Comp II for the core requirements in Evolution of the International System and Comparative Politics.



European and Eurasian Studies MA candidates must pass exams to demonstrate proficiency in a modern European language taught at the school (English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish). Students who select the Russia and Eurasia track must pass exams to demonstrate proficiency in Russian. All non-native English speakers are required to pass an English placement exam upon entering the school. Native speakers of a modern European language or Russian (if in the Russia and Eurasia track) must pass proficiency in a second language which can include English. Those students are encouraged to study another modern European language.

After completion of the SAIS and EES language requirements, full-time students may pursue additional European language studies and may take the following courses at Georgetown University free of charge: Advanced German, Advanced Italian, Polish, Turkish and Ukrainian.



European and Eurasian Studies concentrators must complete ONE of the following capstones:

  • Internship and Report. An 8-12 week summer internship between the first and second year of study, relevant to program course work. Those who complete an internship secured by the EES program are automatically approved for the report option. Those who complete internships outside the EES program should first send a note to Associate Director Kathryn Knowles for approval. The report should be 2000 Words in length, include a photo and present: 1) the content of the internship; 2) how your first year at Johns Hopkins SAIS prepared you for the experience; and 3) how the internship aided in your academic or potential career choices.
  • European and Eurasian Studies Oral Exam. Candidates submit, in advance, a brief paper with a topic they are prepared to discuss. It should feature a contemporary issue in the region, in light of its historical, institutional, political and economic settings. Participation in the non-credit current events seminar and at the various lectures on contemporary political and economic issues is a good way to prepare for the oral.
  • MA Oral Exam (to compete for honors—if eligible).


Entering Class 2016-2017
Entering Class 2015-1016
Entering Class 2014-2015
Entering Class 2013-2014
Entering Class 2012-2013
Entering Class 2011-2012
Entering Class 2010-2011
Entering Class 2009-2010 



Entering Class 2012-2013
Entering Class 2011-2012
Entering Class 2010-2011
Entering Class 2009-2010


European and Eurasian Studies Minor Requirements: 

  • 3 European and Eurasian Studies (or cross-listed) courses* (12 credits)

*SA.100.771 Evolution of the International System and SA.100.750 Comparative Politics may not be used to fulfill minor requirements.

General Minor Requirements:

  • MA students may pursue an optional minor in a policy or regional program. A student cannot pursue a minor in General IR or International Economics, but can pursue a Specialization in International Economics
  • A student can have only one minor and can declare a minor at any time prior to graduation.
  • Students do not receive bidding priority for a minor.
  • All minors require three courses. Some minors require a specific course(s) and/or language proficiency.
  • A student may use a maximum of one applicable cross-listed course (4 credits) toward both a minor AND concentration requirements. In the IR or Asia concentrations, the cross-listed course must be from the primary concentration area and not from the 2 additional required courses in the other IR or Asia areas.

To add or change a minor, please click HERE.


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EES Alumni Annual Newsletter

The Annual EES newsletter goes out in August of each year. Read the latest edition:

2017 EES Alumni Newsletter
2016 EES Alumni Newsletter
2015 EES Alumni Newsletter



EES Adjunct Professor Christopher Chivvis of the RAND International Security and Defense Policy Center discusses France's recent intervention in Mali and offers insight on strategic lessons.
The Oxford Handbook of Italian Politics provides a comprehensive look at the political life of one of Europe's most exciting and turbulent democracies.
Is the West in Decline? is a collection of ten essays by prominent scholars of international relations and current history, many of them associated with the European Studies program of the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.
EES Professor Charles Gati discusses Zbigniew Brzezinski’s multifaceted career dealing with US security and foreign policy.
Adjunct Professor Matthew Rojansky's field research in Ukraine sheds light on the history, causes and methodologies of corporate raiding, as well as on the costs and consequences of raiding for Ukraine's further development.
EES Director and Professor Erik Jones discusses the end of the European crisis from the June 2012 European Council summit through the bailout of Cyprus.
Edited by Ronald Tiersky and Erik Jones, Europe Today offers a range of perspectives on the process of European integration, the evolution of economic performance, the spread of judicial authority, and the reaction to multiculturalism and immigration.
EES Professor Christopher Chivvis discusses the role of the United States and NATO in Libya's war of liberation and its lessons for future military interventions.
A collection of papers from a Conference in honor of Professor David P. Calleo.

Contact Us

Erik Jones
Director of European and Eurasian Studies and Professor of European Studies and International Political Economy
Based in Bologna, Italy

Kathryn Knowles
Associate Director
Based in Bologna, Italy

Cristina Benitez
Academic Program Manager
Based in Washington, DC

Address & Phone

European and Eurasian Studies
Washington, DC:
1619 Massachusetts Ave, NW
Rome 519
Washington, DC 20036

Bologna, Italy:
via Belmeloro 11
40126 Bologna, Italy

DC: +1 202 663 5796 | Bologna: +39 051 291 7811