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Summer Programs

Each summer, the school welcomes visiting students and working professionals to explore the world of international relations through courses and certificate programs offered at its Washington DC campus.

Whether you seek to build professional skills in a graduate certificate, complement an internship, prepare for graduate school, learn a new language, or network with classmates across sectors and industries, you will be inspired by world-renowned experts who bring academic and practical experience into the classroom.

The school’s main campus in Washington DC provides an exciting backdrop for the study of international relations and is conveniently located on Embassy Row—a quick walk from the Dupont Circle metro.

Structured for the working professional, summer courses are small and held two evenings per week in a condensed term. Students can earn four graduate level credits per course.

Summer Term 2020

On-campus classes: June 1-July 14
Online classes: June 1-July 26

Structured for the working professional, summer courses are small and held 2 evenings per week from 6pm-9pm in a condensed 6.5 week term. Students earn four graduate level credits per course. Courses may be transferred to a degree program or count towards one of three graduate certificates the school offers.

    John Karaagac
    Core; American Foreign Policy
     
    Covering the history of US foreign relations since 1945, the course emphasizes competing traditions of statecraft, successive administrations and applications from International Relations Theory to American Foreign Policy. After considering the Cold War era, the course will examine future challenges facing American policy-makers and citizens alike.

    Michael Chase
    China Studies
     
    Fueled by decades of extraordinary economic growth, China has transformed itself into a major power on the world stage. Along with its growing economic power, China has been expanding its diplomatic influence and strengthening its scientific and technological and military capabilities. Even as China increases its power and influence, however, it faces daunting challenges, both at home and abroad. This course considers China as an emerging superpower, with a focus on various domestic and international aspects of China's rise.

    Pavithra Suryanarayan
    Core
     
    Focusing on the major institutions of democratic political systems, such as electoral systems, presidentialism, federalism, and judicial and legal systems, the course aims to familiarize students with a diversity of frameworks to understand contemporary politics within countries. The course will draw upon real world cases to highlight functional issues such as democratic transitions, governance and corruption, and the relationship between development and democracy.
     
    Required for those pursuing a Certificate in International Development.

    Nina Gardner
    International Law; International Development
     
    This course will examine the complexities of transnational and cross-political business practices and strengthen students’ ability to counsel corporate clients effectively in a transnational business environment. The class will touch on the legal dimensions of international business and human rights, starting with postwar prosecutions of business leaders in the Nuremburg trials, and continuing through contemporary human rights challenges against corporations and corporate executives based upon their alleged complicity in human rights violations. It will focus on the increasing importance of corporate social responsibility, the creation of shared value for business, and the crucial role of the financial sector, advocacy groups and the internet in rewarding (and penalizing) businesses that do not take human rights and sustainability into account. The class will cover a few sectors that pose specific challenges in the business environment, namely: extractive industries, internet privacy, human trafficking, and health.

    John Harrington
    International Economics
     
    This course provides a comprehensive introduction to econometrics. Develops tools for estimating functional relationships and critically reading empirical studies that use different econometric techniques; presents assumptions of multivariate regression and discusses the most common econometric problems and the potential consequences and remedies; and discusses omitted variables, sample selection, heteroscedasticity, autocorrelation, multicollinearity and use of discrete variables. Introduces students to instrumental variable technique. Uses statistical software in applied exercises.
     
    Prerequisite: Statistical Methods for Business and Economics.

    Johannes Urpelainen
    Energy, Resources and Environment
     
    This course identifies the important linkages between energy and environment. It focuses on how the pollution abatement policies work and examines the use of market-based instruments. Students will analyze policy challenges in resource conservation and waste management, investigate how politics and political economy interfere with energy policy, and evaluate the role of energy policy in climate change mitigation. The use of policy tools to promote clean technology innovation in energy will be reviewed. Students will also assess trade-offs between environmental conservation and economic growth and apply principles of policy analysis to manage global environmental problems in the energy sector.

    Adam Szubin
    Strategic Studies
     
    This course will examine the methodologies used by criminals and terrorists to raise and move money, the tools that governments use to track and stop them, and the latest developments in the field. Students will look at how illicit finance campaigns are being fought in the areas of terrorism, organized crime, human rights violations, and cyber-crime. The course will cover both the systemic/structural (e.g. governments enhancing global anti-money laundering) and targeted/tactical levels of the fight (e.g. law enforcement tracking financial flows to unravel plots). Students will learn not just what is being done but how to critically assess tools and policy efforts in the field. 

    Elie Canetti
    International Economics; International Development
     
    Students will gain an understanding of how and why governments, corporations and financial institutions raise funds in financial markets—debt and equity—domestically and internationally. Themes include how financial markets differ from other markets from a public policy and regulatory perspective; innovations in capital-raising techniques; and the changing pattern of risk in financial markets resulting from globalization. The course will address key factors that distinguish financial markets and institutions in OECD nations from those in developing countries.

    International Economics
     
    Students will learn the basic theory underlying the international monetary system. Topics include balance-of-payments analysis, foreign-exchange markets, interaction of economies at the macro level and exchange-rate regimes.

    Prerequisite: SAIS Macroeconomics, or intermediate macroeconomics from another institution and passing the SAIS Macroeconomics online waiver exam.

    David Steinberg
    International Political Economy; International Development; Latin American Studies
     
    Students will study the relationship between politics and international economics in developing countries, with a focus on the emerging market economies. The course will critically evaluate different political science theories of foreign economic policymaking in emerging markets and focus on developing countries’ embrace of economic globalization over the past thirty years. The course will explore the different political reasons for why emerging market and developing countries have liberalized foreign trade, removed barriers to foreign investment, and reduced the state’s role in the domestic economy since the 1980s.

    International Economics
     
    This course covers the theory and practice of international trade and investment. The first part of the course examines the cause of trade, the sources of the gains from trade and the domestic and international distribution of those gains. The second part examines the instruments and consequences of trade policy measures, especially tariffs and quantitative restrictions. Addresses preferential trade agreements and the practice of trade policy.

    Prerequisite: SAIS Microeconomics, or intermediate microeconomics from another institution and passing the SAIS Microeconomics online waiver exam.

    Vikram Nehru
    International Economics
     
    The course focuses on the key concepts and ideas surrounding economic development. Students will learn about the global patterns of economic development from the mid-19th century to today. They will also learn about key economic development concepts and measurements, and the waves of theoretical thinking in the development economics discipline since the mid-20th century. Finally, the course will explore the development experience of several countries, with an emphasis on the role of economic policy. 

    The course is appropriate for students without prior course work in development. Prior course work in principles of economics is desirable, or additional self-study may be needed. 
     
    Required for those pursuing a Certificate in International Development.

    International Economics
     
    Macroeconomics is an intermediate-level course that studies the theoretical and institutional framework of modern national economies. Develops analytic tools used to understand how the economy functions in the aggregate. Focuses on the primary purpose of those tools to explain national levels of income, employment, prices and interest rates, as well as changes in these variables over time. Devotes equal attention to short-run economic fluctuations and long-run economic phenomena, especially economic growth and development. Assesses the role of fiscal and monetary policy in determining economic outcomes in both closed and open economies as well as the important relationship between financial markets and macroeconomics.

    Prerequisite: Principles of Macroeconomics or equivalent.

    International Economics
     
    Microeconomics is an intermediate-level course that focuses on the theory of decision-making under conditions of scarcity. Analyzes consumer theory, choice and demand, production, cost, the firm, market structures and market failure. Emphatsizes economic efficiency and the application of economic theory to government and firm decisions and public policy problems. Introduces game theory and some differential calculus. Prior knowledge of differential calculus is helpful or additional self-study may be needed.
     
    Prerequisites: Principles of microeconomics or equivalent, high school algebra and facility with graphs.

    Seth Kaplan
    Global Theory & History
     
    Politics affects risk on many levels (e.g., international, national, regional, and local) and is the result of the interaction of many different elements. Students will examine basic issues with regard to risk analysis as well as why forecasts often fall short before examining three broad issues: country structural fragility, problems with collective action policymaking, and operational breakdowns. The class focuses more on the risks that face countries than on how particular risks might impact corporations or NGOs, though the latter is also examined. The course will also examine how to prioritize and mitigate risk. Each class aims to provide students with a set of frameworks to think about and assess these issues and to work on case studies to develop their skills.

    Marsha Olive
    European & Eurasian Studies
     
    Far from expectations of partnership after the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, Russia looms large in today’s international security debates as a nuclear-armed opponent of the US-led world order. The course looks behind the headlines to examine why Russia became a revisionist power that poses a greater challenge to the West than at any time since the mid-1980s. It equips students to understand the domestic dynamics behind Russia’s strategic posture and to formulate approaches for dealing with Russia in the Putin and post-Putin era.  

    John Harrington
    International Economics
     
    Students will study basic statistical tools for data analysis. Emphasizes facility in problem-solving in statistical inference and two-variable regression and correlation analysis. Presents descriptive statistics, probability and probability distributions and their use in hypothesis testing. Uses computer to solve problems and to reinforce statistical concepts.

    John Karaagac
    Core
     
    This course presents a set of tools for understanding, predicting and formulating policy on international conflict and cooperation. Examining leading schools of international relations theory, including Realism, Liberalism and Constructivism, the course will also survey topics such as alliance formation, nuclear deterrence, imperialism and international institutions. Students will explore the domestic sources of foreign policy, trade, global environmentalism, international law, the integration and disintegration of states, globalization and the future of international relations.

    Required for the Certificate in International Studies.

    Joshua White
    Asian Studies; American Foreign Policy; Strategic Studies
     
    Nowhere does the United States face greater long-term security and defense challenges than in Asia. This course, combining a thematic approach with weekly case studies, provides a rigorous examination of key security issues across the Indo-Pacific — from Pakistan to Japan — and their implications for U.S. interests and policy planning. Topics include the evolving Asian security order; defense challenges posed by the rise of China; trends in conventional military modernization; implications of the Sino-Indian rivalry on regional stability; emerging dynamics in Asian nuclear deterrence; and trends in security competition in the maritime, space and cyber domains. This course includes a practical focus on policy writing. 

    Summer Academies

    Spend four weeks of your summer exploring international affairs in the heart of Europe or Washington DC. 

    Rising sophomores, upperclassmen, and recent college graduates earn four graduate-level credits studying with Johns Hopkins SAIS' world-class faculty. 


    Washington DC SAIS Europe

    The Summer Language Institute in Washington DC

    The Summer Language Institute is unique for emphasizing political, economic, and international topics. Small class sizes provide an ideal environment for individualized attention from experienced instructors.

    Language courses in Arabic, Chinese, and Russian meet 3 to 4 evenings per week from 5:30pm-8:30pm over six and a half weeks and reflect your skills and abilities, ranging from novice to advanced levels. You will be required to take a placement test in May before the summer term begins to assess your language competency and will be assigned to a class that fits your ability. 

    June 1st-July 14th: 24 class sessions

    • Week of June 1st: Mon, Tues, Wed, Thurs
    • Week of June 8th: Mon, Tues, Wed, Thurs
    • Week of June 15th: Mon, Wed, Thurs
    • Week of June 22nd: Mon, Tues, Wed, Thurs
    • Week of June 29th: Mon, Tues, Wed
    • Week of July 6th: Mon, Tues, Wed, Thurs
    • Week of July 13th: Mon, Tues (final exam)