Russian and Ukrainian Politics and International Relations

Modular value: 20 credits
Duration: Term 1
Teaching: Two-hour seminar - weekly.

Lecturers: David White and Kataryna Wolczuk

This module provides a detailed empirical and theoretical examination of post-Soviet Russian and Ukrainian politics at the domestic and international levels, covering the development of key institutions, constitutional choices, democratisation and state building, as well as foreign and security policies.

Topics covered will include:

  • The Soviet political system and the break-up of the USSR, development of democratic institutions
  • The multi-party system
  • Regional politics
  • Political culture and public opinion
  • Russia, Ukraine and the West
  • Russia, Ukraine and the CIS; Russia’s security dilemmas
  • The Chechen conflicts

By the end of the module students should be able to

  • Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of Russian and Ukrainian domestic and international politics in the period 1991-date
  • Interpret the broader meanings of these developments with reference to appropriate concepts and theoretical paradigms (drawn in particular from the fields of political science and international relations)
  • Demonstrate their presentation (written and oral) skills


  • One 2,500 word academic essay (50%)
  • One 3,000-word task-based assignment