Riga (fall)Week-Long Study Tour | Politics & Security Program

Required Course(s)
European Security Dilemmas

Located on the eastern flank of NATO and the EU, the Baltic states offer a stark view of the emerging European security architecture. Our Study Tour brings us to Latvia, one of these Baltic states where European security issues represent a consequential, real-world issue, not just a theoretical concern.

Over the course of our tour, we will dive deep into NATO’s security roles, explore the historical backdrop underpinning Eastern European politics, and deepen our understanding of the nuanced relations between the Baltic States and Russia. We’ll also delve into the intricacies of Euro integration, grounding our understanding of these critical issues in the Latvian context.

Our time in Riga will also allow us to experience Latvia’s culture directly, highlighting the country’s unique contributions to the Baltic regions heritage. Through comparative analyses, we will identify and discuss the similarities and differences among the Baltic States, enhancing our grasp of their individual and collective identities.

This trip is an integral part of our curriculum, designed to enrich your academic experience with practical insights and a deeper understanding of the subjects at hand. It’s an opportunity to apply classroom knowledge to real-world contexts, observe the dynamics of European geopolitics up close, and gain a more nuanced perspective on the region’s cultural and historical landscape.

Tour Objectives

  • Gain a nuanced understanding of the distinctive security challenges facing the Baltic nations
  • Carefully examine why Baltic security is tightly linked to NATO security in general and Swedish security in particular
  • Apply the major theoretical perspectives from security studies to the real-world challenges - and strategies - of the Baltic nations

Possible Activities

  • Explore both old-city Riga and Soviet-era Riga with a knowledgeable local guide
  • Meet with Latvian experts to discuss the current security situation in the Baltic States
  • Discover the delicacies of Latvian cuisine
  • Visit a Soviet-era bunker
  • Visit historical museums such as the KGB museum and the Museum of Occupation
  • Meet with local Latvians to discuss the joys and challenges of life in Riga