cod. 1008975

Academic year 2021/22
2° year of course - Second semester
Academic discipline
Diritto internazionale (IUS/13)
A scelta dello studente
Type of training activity
Student's choice
12 hours
of face-to-face activities
2 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Integrated course unit module: B4PEACE. The Challenges to the European Peace

Learning objectives

The course aims at discussing the broad concept of peace through a multidisciplinary approach. More specifically – building upon research and teaching carried out by its faculty in the field of economics, sociology, international and European Union law and political science – B4PEACE aims at investigating both the internal and the external dimension of peace in the European Union. On the one hand, its goal is to explore the theoretical determinants of the European Peace at the domestic level (the development of the European Social Model as a tool for social cohesion and its possible evolution); on the other, it aims at discussing its main international implications (the promotion of democracy, peace and security by the European Union).

Knowledge and Understanding:
the course provides students with an overview of the European peace in its multiple dimensions. It also offers some theoretical tools that are needed to critically understand both the evolution of the Welfare state in Europe and the principles that shape the European Foreign Policy. At the end of the course, students will acquire a basic knowledge of the European Social Model and understand the role of the EU as a Global Actor of Peace.

Applying knowledge and understanding:
peace is a multi-faceted phenomenon that has to be studied in its multiple dimensions. For this reason, besides knowledge, the course will provide students with a method for the study of social science phenomena, adopting an innovative approach to teaching. At the end of the course, students should be able to apply their knowledge to the study of other relevant social issues, analyzing social science topics through a multidisciplinary approach.

Making judgments:
the course offers a multidisciplinary knowledge on the evolution of the European Social Model and on the European approach to foreign policy. At the end of the course, it is expected that students will be able to formulate their own point of view on those issues, critically understanding both the relationship between economic growth, social inclusion and welfare policies carried out in the EU, and the European Union’s role in maintaining and promoting peace, democracy and human rights also outside its borders.

the inter- and multidisciplinary of the course should also impact on students’ ability to communicate their own point of view on European issues using the jargon that is used in Politics, Sociology, Law and Economics. Moreover, at the end of the course they should be able to clearly express and debate any point related to both the European Social Model and the European Foreign and Security Policy, making reference to the main theoretical perspectives and to the founding principles of the European Union.


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Course unit content

For a course description, see
Please note that the whole program for the B4PEACE course (including schedule, required readings and assessment methods and criteria) will be available on the project website ( and on Elly before the beginning of the course. Students are advised to check out those websites for a better understanding of the course.

The International Law Module is divided into two parts:

FIRST PART (Prof. Pineschi & Prof. Carpanelli)

In her lecture, Prof. Pineschi will provide students with an overview of major strategies and synergies that the United Nations and the European Union are currently implementing to address the major threats to international peace and security of the twenty-first century. In particular, the attention will be focused on:
- the notion of “security”;
- the major threats: economic and social threats, including poverty, infectious diseases and environmental degradation; inter-State and internal conflicts, including genocide and other large-scale atrocities; nuclear, chemical and biological weapons; terrorism; transnational organized crime; cybercrime;
- the basic assumption that «Today’s threats recognize no national boundaries, are connected, and must be addressed at the global and regional (.) levels. No State, no matter how powerful, can by its own efforts alone make itself invulnerable to today’s threats. And it cannot be assumed that every State will always be able, or willing, to meet its responsibility to protect its own peoples and not to harm its neighbours» (A More Secure World. Our Shared Responsibility, 2004)
- the legal and practical tools that can be employed by the UN and the EU to ensure a more effective response to current threats;
- strengths and weaknesses of the present legal framework.

In her lecture, Prof. Carpanelli will provide students with an overview about transitional justice (i.e. the range of mechanisms and processes aiming at ensuring accountability and reconciliation after abuses have taken place on a large scale) in conflict and post-conflict settings, including the relevant international instruments governing it (1h). It will then review the European Union’s approach to transitional justice and the role it has played or might play with respect to the prevention of future crisis and human rights abuses (1h). In particular, the attention will be focused on:
- The EU Action Plan on Human Rights and Democracy
- The EU’s Policy Framework on support to transitional justice
- Promotion of truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence after past violations and abuses
- State- and peace-building
- Conflict prevention

SECOND PART (Prof. Spagnolo)

This activity aims at providing students with basic knowledge of the functioning of the EU Security and Defence Policy and of advanced knowledge of the features of EU military operations, with a particular focus on the relationship between Third States and other International Organizations. In particular, the attention will be focused on:
- First part (1,5 hours): basic introduction to EU Security and Defence Policy
- Second part (2 hours): basic and advanced introduction to EU peace operations
- Third module (1 hours): the relationship between the EU and Third States and International Organizations (UN, NATO) in the context of peace operations
- Fourth module (1,5 hour): case study on EUNAVFOR Atalanta

Full programme

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The program and all readings materials will be available on the project website ( and on Elly before the beginning of the course.

FIRST PART (Prof. Pineschi & Prof. Carpanelli)

- A More Secure World. Our Shared Responsibility, Report of the HighLevel Panel on Threats, Challenges and Change, UN Doc. A/59/565, 2 December 2004;
- The European Agenda on Security, Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions, Strasbourg, 28.04.2015, COM (2015)185 final highlighted in their Report,

SECOND PART (Prof. Spagnolo)

- Power Point Slides provided by the Professor; articles and book chapters handed out in class by the Professor

Teaching methods

Theoretical approach (lecture) and case study analysis (FIRST PART). Seminar-style lectures with the involvement of a Political Scientist as a discussant; debates and discussion of case studies (SECOND PART)

Assessment methods and criteria

Attending Students will be evaluated through a midterm exam and a final paper.
MIDTERM: The midterm exam will be scheduled after the first part of the B4PEACE course for attending students. The midterm exam will be written and divided in two sections:

a) a first section with 10 closed-ended questions (multiple choice) on topics discussed in the first part of the course;
b) a second section with 4 open-ended questions on topics discussed in the first part of the course.

Students’ knowledge and understanding of concepts, approaches and paradigms will be assessed through the first, multiple choice section (1 point for each question). Their ability to apply their knowledge and understanding, and to make judgements will be verified through the four open questions (5 points max for each question).

FINAL EXAM: For the second part of the course, students will be asked to submit a short essay connecting issues that have been discussed in seminars with EXT Professors. This final exam will also evaluate Students’ ability to make interdisciplinary references among topics.
Non attending Students are kindly required to contact the module’s coordinator for the required readings and the evaluation

Other information

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