The Center for Cultural Diplomacy Studies

MA Program in Cultural Diplomacy and International Sport (One Year Program)

The program is offered by the University of the West of Scotland (UWS) in partnership with the Academy for Cultural Diplomacy

MA Program in Cultural Diplomacy and International Sport


The MA Program in Cultural Diplomacy and International Sport is a one-year program offered by the University of the West of Scotland in partnership with the Academy for Cultural Diplomacy.

Credits - 90 ECTS Credits

Length - 2 Trimesters (plus Dissertation)

Location - Paisley, Scotland and Berlin, Germany

Tuition - €9,000

Sport has come to occupy a central role in the economic, physical, psychological and socio-cultural fabric of nation states.  Historical and cultural identity cannot be reflected, understood or critiqued without recourse to the place and influence of sport. Importantly, and despite the rhetoric of politicians and governing bodies, sport is a powerful political vehicle. As a driver of economic wealth, tourist attraction, business development and urban regeneration sport is a major plinth in the policy process. Moreover, in a techno-cultural age of digital and social immediacy, sport has become a key media and experiential spectacular, constantly deployed across the geo-political stage.  Modern sport is now a global power player intrinsic to the perpetuation of the spectacle of consumer capitalism, which solidifies its status as a primary vehicle of cultural diplomacy.

Sport, sport events and the media are, more than ever, intrinsically linked.  The trajectory of such a union is traced through the rise of the hallmark, major and mega events (e.g. Olympics and World Cup), which see the mediatisation of experience subtly mixed with the pride and prestige with identity politics and ideological power (Getz, 2014). Whether the propaganda of Nazi Germany, race relations of Mexico Olympics, terrorism of Munich Olympics, 1980s Cold War boycotts, favela clearances of 2016 Rio World Cup to human rights and FIFA allegations of 2022 Qatar World Cup sport is embedded in the arena of political contestation. The role of sport as a vehicle for peace and development are increasingly promoted by governing bodies of sport and ambassadors for developing nations. Again cultural diplomacy comes to the forefront with sport as we see governing bodies of sporting events, policy institutions and transnational corporations assert counter-discourses that see sport claimed as a supranational values vehicle for peace, human rights and equality.  Whether in the bidding phase, lead up, mediatised event or post-event legacy and leverage claims sporting events bring geopolitical differences to the fore.  This MA blends expertise in sport with that of cultural diplomacy to ensure the sporting leaders or diplomats of the future are prepared to deal with the global sporting arena and its potential political, social and cultural outcomes.

The program provides students with expertise in the field of International Sport and Cultural Diplomacy, a new and attractive field of studies, which is currently offered as an academic field only through the Center for Cultural Diplomacy Studies of the Institute for Cultural Diplomacy. This particular emphasis on Cultural Diplomacy and its historical and contemporary application in the public sector, private sector and civil society, provides students with expertise in three distinct academic fields, thus with an academic and practical advantage in the European and Global Arena.

The program addresses contemporary international issues, with classroom seminars and lectures, as well as online resources including vodcasts, recorded lecturers and presentations.  Additionally, educational & cultural events, conferences, professional trainings, tours, visits and meetings with foreign officials, are further incorporated into the curriculum. Students will meet with leading experts working in international organizations, embassies, and academic institutions, and will engage with specialists in the areas of International Events, Sport, Sport Media, Sport Policy, Culture, Communication, Politics, Human Rights, Culture, Peace Building, Multilateral Diplomacy, Conflict Resolution, and Development.

The program provides students with practical experience for both academic and professional development, preparing students for careers in diverse fields, such as international sport events, sports policy, sport governing bodies, international relations, conferences and events, the humanities, politics, and culture, foreign policy and international policy.  On a practical level, the international environment of the Center for Cultural Diplomacy Studies offers students a unique opportunity to interact with leading experts and academics at a wide variety of international organizations and research centers. This exceptional learning environment leads to original research and independent study opportunities. It allows students to create a solid professional network and form a concrete base for future academic and professional career choices, preparing students for engagement in the international arena, civil society, politics, governmental organizations and international economic organizations, as well as the private sector.

Dates of Next Program for 2018 »

Enrolments to the Program are possible towards the fall, winter and spring semesters’ start each year. To learn about the possible Start Dates of the program for the academic year 2018, please click HERE.

Professional Development Program »

The Professional Development Program was created and developed in order to equip students with the relevant skill sets, knowledge, professional experience and professional relationships, so that they will be able to acquire a job immediately upon completion of the degree. One of the main goals of the Professional Development program is to enable students to acquire job opportunities and develop their careers in institutions such as the UN, EU, African Union, national governments, national parliaments, international corporations and international NGOs. (More)

Program Structure

The program consists of 90 ECTS credits in total and has duration of two trimesters, and a Thesis to be submitted towards the completion of the program. The first trimester of the program is hosted by the University of the West of Scotland in Paisley and the second trimester is hosted by the Institute for Cultural Diplomacy in Berlin.  

The program follows the conventional university structure of a one year academic program divided into two trimesters, where Students are offered elective courses to accompany mandatory courses, a professional development experience and the final thesis.

Program Curriculum

Trimester 1 (30 Credits)

Trimester 1 introduces the students to their pathway route in International Events and Cultural Diplomacy

Mandatory Courses for Trimester One are:
  • Module: Global Events Policy: critical perspectives
    Event Formations
    Event Rationales
    Event Implementations (International Event Cases)
  • Module: Sport and Society
    Sport, Theory and Culture
    Sport and Contemporary Society
    Sport, Politics and Government
    Sport, Peace and Development
  • Module: Research Methods
    Research topics
    Quantitative methods
    Qualitative methods
    Analysis and evaluation

Trimester 2 (30 Credits)

The main priority of the curriculum for the second trimester is to provide students with a solid foundation and understanding of the history and contemporary practice of Cultural Diplomacy, as well as future applications of the field.

Mandatory Courses for Trimester Two are:
  • The History and Evolution of the Field of Cultural Diplomacy
  • Future Trends in International Relations and Cultural Diplomacy
* Elective Courses for Trimester Two, (2 of which each student must undertake), include:
  • Nation Branding and Unilateral Cultural Diplomacy
  • International Case Studies
  • Soft Power, Hard Power and Smart Power

Professional Development Training Program is available as an additional module should the students wish to take this (12 credits)

The Professional Development Training Program provides students with the opportunity to apply in practice what they learn in theory in their studies and gain valuable professional experience. The program can be completed simultaneous to the students’ studies or before or after the second semester. The professional development program is designed individually with each of the students and is composed of part or all of the following main components:
  • Research
  • Development of Cultural Diplomacy Initiative
  • Participating in and Contributing to ICD’s Projects, Activities and Conferences

Master Thesis (30 Credits)

During the second Trimester, students will start preparing for their Thesis, which is due to be submitted towards the completion of the program. Staff from UWS will provide 4-5 lecture/workshops in Berlin to help the students develop their topic in Trimester 2. A supervisor will be provided from either UWS or ICD to work with the students on their dissertation.