MA in Diplomacy and International Law

As populations flee repressive regimes and political issues have ramifications beyond any one state’s borders, the need for real-world solutions and the leaders who can implement them is paramount. The highly competitive one-year MA in Diplomacy and International Law offers you an interdisciplinary degree including a summer certificate program in human rights run at AUP. Through the program, you will acquire both the fundamental knowledge and practical skills necessary for careers in international law, diplomacy and international advocacy.

Real-world solutions

The program enables you to think critically about complex diplomatic and international legal issues in real-world contexts. By applying theory to practice, you will address some of the key questions facing public and non-governmental institutions around the world, such as “Why do states participate in international institutions that promote global cooperation?” or “How do states and institutions interact when cooperation breaks down and conflict ensues?”

A European Campus

With increasing global interdependence, hard distinctions between foreign and domestic policy no longer exist. The program capitalizes on its location in the heart of Europe to prepare you to tackle pressing contemporary issues in public, comparative, humanitarian and human rights law from a uniquely international perspective.

Innovative solutions, Transferable skills

Your coursework in diplomacy and international law includes elements of international relations, economics, law and political science to examine the problems of our day – and search for the best way to administer and manage innovative solutions. Through the program you will be prepared with the analytical and practical skills to prepare you to serve across cultures and national boundaries, and to analyze geopolitical and diplomatic challenges. You will develop expertise in negotiation, strategic diplomatic thinking and legal analysis to support your next career step.

A Commitment to excellence and social justice

As a student of the program you will be an active proponent of social justice. You will be educated to work in an international environment and to contribute to the resolution of complex global issues that affect the public, non-profit, and private sectors. Arriving at AUP you will have demonstrated academic excellence and a wide range of personal, professional and academic experience, with a strong commitment to an international career in law or public policy.

Program Requirements

As a student of the MA in Diplomacy and International Law you will engage with discipline-specific theoretical constructs through modules designed to enhance critical thinking, as well as graduate-level research and writing capacities. You will have the opportunity to supplement rigorous coursework and professional modules with internships, fieldwork for thesis research, and case study methods for thesis production.

The program features core and elective courses, allowing you to focus on various fields of practice. We cover a rich scope of content from law to international relations and diplomacy, from conflict resolution to human rights, including:

Core Courses


International Affairs Course:

PO5005 Philo. Found. Of Internat'l Relations

Articulated within the emergence of the European nation-state and born in the context of the First World War and its aftermath, the discursive field of International Relations is organized around the constitutive concepts of conflict, anarchy, power, system, rule, law, and justice, and the practices of civil society and political economy. These concepts and practices organize, in turn, both the major schools of International Relations theory and contemporary methodological pluralism. This course interrogates these founding concepts from a philosophical perspective within the historical and discursive context of each major school: 1) from classical liberalism to international liberalism; 2) from classical realism to modern realism; 3) the ‘English School’ of IR theory (Bull); 4) Marxist tenets within international relations (from Karl Marx to international political economy); 5) Modern and Contemporary Critical Liberalism (Polanyi and Held); 6) The philosophical grounds of contemporary Constructivism.


PO5075 Ecole De Guerre Practicum

This course prepares AUP students to play the role of international NGO humanitarian aid workers, responsible for providing relief to tens of thousands of civilians caught in the crossfire during the Exercise Coalition, a polyvalent simulation of military intervention organized and operated by the French War College (Ecole de Guerre) with civilian partners.



Select two of the following:

PO5025 Communication & The Global Public Sphere

This course focuses on the concept of the/a public. Discusses how media and political actors rhetorically constitute the public; how they (and occasionally governments) constitute “public spaces”(virtual and material) in which public discourse takes place, and how institutional and technological forces constitute “public opinion” and articulate “the public interest.” On the other hand, we will consider how political economy of media and social practices facilitate or stifle spaces, political actors, and publics. The course will also compare contemporary manifestations of public-making with Habermas’s theory of the public sphere, which he thought was an area of social life vital to a legitimate democracy. The potentiality, control, and use of new communication technologies are explored in relation to the existence and future of a global public sphere.


PO5026 Politics & Economics Of Global Media

This course examines the dynamics of the global media system. Students will gain a critical awareness of how international flows of information, entertainment and lifestyle values play a powerful role in shaping cultural and political realities. The concept of "soft power" is key in examining the influence of Western pop culture, whether as "imperialism" or as "globalization". The course examines soft power in various forms: Hollywood movies, television series, pop music, Disney cartoons, fast food such as Coca-Cola and McDonalds, and social media networks such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. The course also analyzes the influence of non-Anglo-American pop culture — from Turkish soap operas to Latin American "telenovelas".


PO5031 Politics & Policy II

This course covers three topics: 1. The process of policy formation – Students will gain an understanding of the process by which policy decisions are made in societies with democratic governmental institutions. They will be able to utilize alternative models of the policy process to make judgments about the likely participants in and outcomes of policy debates. 2. The nature of policy analysis and its role in policy formation – Students will know the tasks involved in professional policy analysis and how they are typically completed. They will develop an ability to assess policy analysis as consumers of analytic reports and will gain a foundation for further work in developing the skills used in conducting policy analysis. They will also understand the limits of policy analysis and how it relates to political considerations in the policy formation process. 3. The nature of program evaluation and its role in public management and policy making – Students will understand the purposes of evaluations, the alternative methods available for evaluation including their strengths and weakness, and the ways manger can use evaluations to improve program performance. Particular attention will be paid to considerations in the design of evaluations and the use of logic models in the design.


PO5072 Us & World Affairs

America's predominant position in the modern world system derives from a continuous process of expansion. Using a pluridisciplinary approach with a strong historical focus, this course critically explores the US’s ascending movement from the confines to the center of the world system and the ways in which America has shaped the global political economy. It will allow students to anchor controversial contemporary debates (imperialism and hegemony, cooperation and conflict, multilateralism and unilateralism, globalization, transnationality and the nation state, etc.) in historic and comparative perspective. Major IR and IPE theoretical frameworks (realism, liberalism, Marxism, transnational theories) will be discussed and their relevance assessed when applied to different issue areas.


PO5073 Media & Society In The Middle East & N.afr.

This course examines the role of Media in the Middle East and North Africa (primarily Arab countries). It analyzes the different ways in which Media and politics intersect. It covers the evolution of the Middle Eastern Mediascape, its relation to ideologies, to political and intellectual circles, to the emerging ruling elites, to entertainment and to financial sponsors. The course discusses as well the emergence of Pan Arab Media outlets (from newspapers to Satellite channels), their impact on the regional media scene, and then the beginning of the digital era or the "democratization" of media with internet, social networks, smart phones, and their roles in revolutions. Islam, its perceptions, its political impact, and the way some Islamist movements deal with or use the Media are topics to explore. LEARNING OUTCOMES: 1. To provide students with an understanding of important media trends in the Middle East. 2. To help students reflect on the role of Media in Middle Eastern culture and politics. 3. To assist students think through the roles that traditional and new/digital Media have played in revolutions in the region


PO5091 Topics In Politics

Topics change each semester- see the current Academic Schedule for current course descriptions.



Law Course:

LW5000 International Public Law

This foundational course introduces the student to the nature, major principles, processes and institutions of the international legal system, the relationship between international and domestic law and the role of law in promoting world public order. Students will acquire an understanding of the conceptual issues underlying this discipline and a critical appreciation of how law interacts with contemporary world politics. Topics include the creation and status of international law, participation and competence in the international legal system, primary substantive norms such as the law regulating the use of force and enforcement procedures.



Select one of the following:

LW5020 Comparative Law

This course covers the world’s wide-range of legal systems; offers comparative evaluation of the merits of differing legal solutions to social problems; and explores many of the current attempts to unify common and civil law at the international level. Special attention is given to the prominent features of civil law and common law systems, such as the rule of precedent (common law) versus the reliance on good faith (civil law), or the investigatory civil procedure (civil law) and the adversarial civil procedure (common law). Selected civil law judgments and common law judgments will be compared.


LW5080 Women, Conflict Res., & Internat'l Law

This course will examine the existing international legal framework for the protection of women’s rights and contrast the law with the nearly universal perception that the world of women is a private sphere, one where laws made in the public realm have less weight, or are more difficult to implement due to lack of witnesses, or worse, community acceptance of certain types of gender-based violence. But activists are making progress across the globe in combating insufficient implementation of women’s rights. This course will explore their remarkably innovative strategies to achieve conflict resolution and the protection of women in challenging circumstances.


LW5091 Topics In Law

Topics change each semester- see the current Academic Schedule for current course descriptions.


Ensure your professional impact

Whether in the public or private sector, professionals need to be international and transnational in their outlook and vision. The program prepares you for exciting career paths to effect real change using foundational knowledge of international law across several fields.

As a graduate of the MA in Diplomacy and International Law you will:
  • Build an in-depth understanding of a cosmopolitan canon of academic and expert publications in international affairs, international law, public policy, transnational affairs, conflict resolution and civil society development

  • Develop clear analytical thinking as demonstrated by contributions to in-class discussions and argumentation as developed in written work including in the exploration of causality in your Masters thesis

  • Demonstrate initiative in selecting a range of rigorous academic sources for oral and written work and in the pursuit of original research for your Masters thesis


Close to 9 out of every 10 graduate alumni that graduated from The American University of Paris during the years 2012-2014 have found a job, become entrepreneurs or pursued additional educational routes within one year of graduation. Our graduate programs provide academic excellence and practical knowledge that prepares you to successfully enter the international employment market after graduation. 


During the course of your study, you are encouraged to build on your education at AUP by applying gained knowledge and skills. An internship provides you with the crucial connection between theoretical knowledge and the real world experience that can ultimately kick start your professional career.

In the past our students have undertaken placements with companies that include:



International Chamber of Commerce (ICC)

Bredin Prat

US Embassy Paris

Pour Une Planete sans Frontieres

African Artists for Development

Ogilvy & Mather Paris

Elan Edelman S.A.S.

United Nations


Turner Broadcasting

Alumni and Students say...

Experience the Program

Learning methods focus on conventional techniques as well as critical management studies and approaches from other academic disciplines. Courses combine lectures, seminar discussion, case-method and student-directed projects. Within this context, a special emphasis is put on professional skills development and career development. Students also have the opportunity to collaborate with each other and program faculty for research projects and specialized directed study courses.

Program Highlight

In 2018, Nicole Santiago (MA International Diplomacy and International Law) and Gabriel Green (Senior, Major International Comparative Politics/Minor International Law), had the opportunity to present to the United Nations. Thanks to the support of the Civic Media Lab.