Summer School on EU Policy Making

Programme and curriculum

*** If you cannot wait for the summer of 2022 to enrol in a similar programme, check out our Winter School on EU Policy Making (February 2022) focusing on the theme of digital rights and diplomacy.​***

2022 Summer School theme: Analysing civil rights in today's EU

The intensive two-week Jean Monnet Summer School on EU Policy Making, taught on campus, is held one week in Brussels and one week in Vienna from Monday 4 to Friday 15 July 2022. It allows students to explore both the old and the new centre of diplomacy in Europe. The Brussels School of Governance joins forces with the Diplomatische Akademie Wien — Vienna School of International Studies and the University of Vienna to bring you this 'crash course' in European Union Policy Making. The focus area of the Summer edition, which will be civil rights, touching on policy discussions related to human security, migration, anti-discrimination, diversity.

Packed with interactive seminars and study visits, this summer programme attracts students and young professionals who wish to broaden their knowledge of the European institutions, European law and the European decision-making process in general. The first week of the summer school takes place in Brussels and reviews the main EU institutions and decision-making procedures. During the second week students learn more about EU foreign relations, while enjoying the beautiful city of Vienna.

The Summer School corresponds to 5 ECTS. It is also part of the Postgraduate Certificate in EU Policy Making. This certificate is equivalent to 25 ECTS credits and provides an even better insight in the different EU policy areas.

The Brussels School of Governance is an alliance between the Institute for European Studies (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) and Vesalius College. This Summer School is a programme that is organised by the Institute for European Studies (VUB), a Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence. 


Programme information

The Summer School’s main theme in 2022 will be Analysing civil rights in today’s EU.

The first week in BRUSSELS (4 to 8 July) provides an introduction to the various decision-making actors and key policy areas. Lectures, discussions and exercises facilitated by academics and practitioners are complemented with study visits to EU institutions. The lectures include the following topics:

  • Introduction to the European Union
  • Functioning of the European institutions
  • EU decision-making procedures
  • Governance, participation and legitimacy
  • Overview of select EU policy areas with a focus on civil rights: human security, migration, anti-discrimination, diversity.

The second week in VIENNA (11 to 15 July) builds on the first week and offers in-depth knowledge on EU policy making, with a focus on external affairs. Lectures and interactive exchanges with experts are complemented with visits to the UN, the OSCE and the EU Delegation in Vienna. The lectures address the following topics:

  • EU constitutional and legal issues
  • European foreign and security policy
  • Human rights protection
  • The EU and international organisations
  • Overview of select EU policy areas with a focus on civil rights: human security, migration, anti-discrimination, diversity.

Throughout the two weeks, the summer school participants will work in small groups to negotiate a policy solution to a human security-related problem in the EU. They are assigned a role and asked to broker political and legislative agreements among EU member states. Upon attendance and active participation in the two-week programme, the participants receive a 5 ECTS certificate for participation in the Summer School.


Click here to see the summer school programme of the 2021 edition.

Click here to see the summer school brochure.


The European Commission's support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents, which reflect the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

Success stories

  • "The 2020 summer school was an outstanding learning experience. It helped me to better understand the decision making process within the EU and the future challenges the EU has to tackle. Despite being an online experience this year, due to the staff’s dedication, professionalism and the way the lectures were organized, the summer school felt like an on site event. I am more than grateful for this opportunity to learn about the EU in a multicultural environment."

    Bogdan Popescu (Romania)
    Summer School alumnus (2020)
  • "I have participated to the Summer School on EU Policy making 2020. Despite the fact the course had to be held online for the first time, due to the COVID context, the organisers managed to keep it interesting, challenging and interactive! We did workshops, brainstorming, case studies and a simulation game which enabled us to put the theory in practice with direct feedback from experts in the field. I would highly recommend the short but intensive programme for anyone with a political, societal or general European interest (so anyone actually)!"

    Charlotte Vanstallen (Belgium)
    Summer School alumna (2020)
  • As a PhD student in Analysis of Social and Economic Processes, I found this Summer School extremely interesting for my current and future research. A high level of competence in theoretical knowledge and great involvement in practical activities in EU policy-making is the perfect blend we benefitted from. An impeccable organizational structure and a proactive class context enriched this experience of great memories both in Brussels and in Vienna.

    Enrico Ubiali (Italy)
    Summer School alumnus (2019)
  • “I found the summer school really valuable. Although it was part of the Postgraduate Certificate in EU Policy-Making anyway, it gave me an opportunity to meet all my classmates who I had been occasionally doing group assignments with or having discussions with online without having met in person. Logistics and meals were coordinated way better than I imagined. A huge thanks to Trisha, Marion and Silviu for their unwavering support.”

    Mariaam Bhatti (South Africa)
    Summer School alumna (2019)
Admission requirements

It is recommended to be (at least) in the final year of a Bachelor degree. Candidates from partner countries neighbouring the EU are especially encouraged to apply. All candidates must demonstrate a high level of motivation and interest in their letter of intent. A good level of English is necessary.

Deadlines and application process

To apply, please click the ‘Apply here’ button at the top of this page, which will take you to a page on a website dedicated to this programme, on which you will find the application form that you can use to submit your information and accompanying documents that we require from you to assess your application.


  • Please note that applications will be reviewed as of January – you may of course already apply before that date.
  • Early bird deadline: 15 March
    Applicants who submit their application by 15 March at the latest and are subsequently admitted to the programme, are eligible for a 10% discount on the tuition fee.
  • Tuition fee waiver deadline: 15 March (see information below).
  • Application deadline: 1 May
Tuition fee information

The tuition fee for the Summer School is 1900 EUR. This fee includes: course material, access to online platform, daily breakfast in Brussels, daily lunch in Brussels and Vienna, flight from Brussels to Vienna on the Sunday at the end of the first week of the summer school, and study visits. The tuition fee does not include: accommodation, daily breakfast in Vienna, evening meals, flights to Brussels and from Vienna.

How can I apply for a tuition fee waiver?

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How can I apply for a tuition fee waiver?

In 2022, the Brussels School of Governance is able to grant a full tuition fee waiver to one student of the summer school programme.

The tuition fee waiver will be attributed on the basis of merit and motivation. The waiver will in general, but not exclusively, be granted to a student from a partner country neighbouring the EU

If you think you may be eligible for the waiver, you will need to provide the following supporting documents as part of your application to the programme:

  • A motivation letter
  • A transcript of your academic records.

The deadline for applying for the tuition fee waiver is 15 March

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Are any alumni available for feedback about the summer school?

Could I have more information about the accommodation for the Summer School?

Does this programme provide me any ECTS credits?

What is the cancellation policy?

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Are any alumni available for feedback about the summer school?

Yes – you will find their contact details at the bottom of this web page. Feel free to reach out to them to get their honest, first-hand feedback to your questions!

Could I have more information for the accommodation for the Summer School?

Optional accommodation is available through the programme organisers.

In Brussels, accommodation consists of a shared room (2 persons per room). It could be at Citadines Toison d’Or in the centre of Brussels (to be confirmed). A week in a shared studio costs €350 pp (suggested check-in on Sunday 4 July).

Click here for more information about accommodation in Brussels.

In Vienna, accommodation consists of a shared room (2 persons per room) at the Carlton Opera Hotel (walking distance to the DA). As the programme does not finish until the evening of 17 July, it is advisable to return on 18 July. A week in a shared room costs €300* pp (check-in on Sunday 12 July, check-out on Saturday 18 July).

Click here for more information about accommodation in Vienna.

Please note that you are responsible for booking your return flight from Vienna.

*the price is subject to modifications beyond our control

Does this programme provide me any ECTS credits?

As of 2012, the Summer School on EU Policy Making has received official accreditation from the VUB. Thus, the Summer School corresponds to 5 credits (equivalent to 5 ECTS).

What is the cancellation policy?

  • More than 45 days before arrival: no cancellation charges
  • Between 45 and 30 days before arrival: 50% cancellation charges
  • Between 30 and 15 days before arrival: 75% cancellation charges
  • Less than 15 days before arrival: 100% cancellation charges
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Have a question about this programme? Ask our alumni…

If you want to know more about our Summer School, who better to ask than the people who have recently finished it? The alumni below are available to provide you with their honest, first-hand feedback!

Year of graduation: 2018
Year of graduation: 2019
Year of graduation: 2020
Year of graduation: 2020

…or get in touch with us directly!

I have already applied and have a question about my application.


If you have not submitted an application yet, use the Contact Form on this page, or
one of the other contact options below.

I have not applied yet and want to book a virtual appointment.

Contact us