Political Theory - Banksy "keep the coins, i want change"

Master's specialisation | Joint programme optionalPolitical Theory

Political Theory is not just about interpreting or explaining the world, but also about changing it. From climate change to homelessness, great societal challenges require that we make decent and legitimate political choices. But how can we determine that? This specialisation provides you with the tools to evaluate whether and how the exercise of power by political actors and institutions can be justified.

Go to

Something for you?

  • A down to earth, problem-oriented, and interdisciplinary specialisation at the intersection of political theory, political philosophy, and empirical political science. 
  • Reflect upon contemporary political challenges such as misinformation and polarisation, historic injustice and reparations, gentrification and segregation, environmental justice, civil disobedience, and democratic innovation. 
  • Develop strong analytical and evaluative research skills that allow you to understand, explain, and assess political decisions in any setting– and to design and realize necessary change. 
  • The programme receives high marks for the quality of its small-scale teaching, and its active and engaging academic community (Source: Keuzegids 2024).
Why study this programme?

Admission requirements

Do you want to know if you can be admitted? Read more about the admission requirements of this programme.

Admission and application
I think it is important that there are people in the working field with this degree, because it allows them to think more in-depth and theoretically about political and societal issues.
Fleur Gijsen
Fleur Gijsen Student Read Fleur's story
Get acquainted

What will you learn

This specialisation will help you comprehend and explain the complexity and diversity of today's democratic challenges, from the level of the individual and the city to that of the nation-state and the global sphere. By focusing on political concepts such as power, justice and recognition you will learn to critically assess political values, policies and aspirations in terms of their desirability and soundness. Our emphasis on both (normative) political theory and empirical knowledge will allow you to imagine and design policies that are both viable and defensible. You will be prepared for any career or calling in service of the public good.

Study programme

Future career opportunities

Our graduates are well prepared for jobs such as:

  • Policy researcher
  • Strategic consultant or manager in civic, civil and corporate organisations
  • Public affairs advisor
  • Journalist

Career prospects


To indicate the type of research in this specialisation, a few examples:

  • What, if anything, do we owe to future generations, the Global South, minority groups, planet Earth?
  • What can and should be our ambitions for city governance, given urgent urban challenges such as segregation, gentrification and homelessness?
  • Why do we accept domination and dictatorship in the workplace, and under what (if any) conditions should we demand the democratisation of work?
  • Do corporations have a responsibility for justice, and to what extent are political activities of firms in our democracies desirable and legitimate?

Questions about this programme?

Do you have a question about this programme? We're happy to help. Please contact us, ask a student or check out our information activities.


Tuitions & grants

If you are going to follow this Master's programme, you will pay an annual tuition fee. There are different tuition rates. The amount depends on your personal situation.