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EU Democracy Promotion
Start date: Sep 1, 2016, End date: Aug 31, 2019 PROJECT  ONGOING 

The University of New York Tirana (UNYT) wishes to undertake the following Jean Monnet Module activities for the primary purpose of deepening this university’s focus on European Union studies. Specifically, this Module proposal aims at designing two highly customized courses on EU Democracy Promotion (the bachelor level course will be titled “Intro to EU Democracy Promotion”, and the master level course titled “EU Democracy Promotion: Theory and Practice”). Historically, democratization was thought to take place primarily within the domestic context. However, with the growth of promotional aid activities by international actors such as the EU, UN and US, it became apparent that international factors can have a positive effect in achieving successful democratic transitions. No actor has been more active in this respect than the EU itself. Yet despite this growing body of literature, democracy promotion remains an under-theorized research program. In other words, the conditions under which democracy promotion is likely to be effective, the mechanisms through which democracy promotion is likely to be more efficient, and other similar theoretical questions remain unclear. It is this theoretical gap, which this Module proposal targets in order to better understand the causal mechanisms of EU democracy promotion. Among the number of possible courses that this proposal could have chosen, EU Democracy Promotion was selected for a number of reasons. First, as was just highlighted, democracy promotion remains under-theorized. Second, and more importantly, as Albania itself is currently in the process of European integration, the course is highly pertinent to current political debates and discourses within the country. And thirdly, as UNYT is currently in the early phases of setting up a European Union Studies Centre, a Jean Monnet Module would be a great addition to the university’s curricula that could act as a start-off moment for achieving that goal.
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