Mission Statement

Faculty of Social and Political Science
of the University of Innsbruck is committed to the goal of Scientific Excellency in research and teachings and proceeds from a pluralist science understanding, which is committed to the universal human rights and the democracy. The faculty understands itself as a sociological authority centre of the University of Innsbruck and consists of the Department of Political Science, the Department of Sociology, the Mountain Agriculture Research Unit and a sphere of competence for the Methods of the Social Sciences, which are functionally connected in research and teachings and contribute their specific and professional competences. The request for social science reflection expertise rises from year to year and offers numerous shaping possibilities to a research-active faculty. Apart from the participation in international research programs and qualitatively high-value research and publication achievements the faculty understands itself also as a reflection platform for social developments, as discussion platform for social discourses and as issues founder for social future-questions from a politics-scientific and sociological perspective.

 

Teaching
In realization of the European-wide Bologna process we have started our bachelor programmes in 2007: a Bachelor of Political Science and a Bachelor of Sociology. In 2008 new master programmes have started and have been modified 2014 to address not only interested Austrian students, but also an international clientele: master programme "Political Science: European and international Politics" and master programme "Sociology: Social and Political Theory". Since winter term 2010/2011 we have been started with our brand new master programme "Gender, Culture and Social Change" in cooperation with six other faculties of the University of Innsbruck. Our two PhD programmes intensify our focus on internationalization: PhD Political Science and PhD Sociology.

 

Core themes in the curricula of the Innsbruck School of Political Science and Sociology ranges among others from Political Communication/Journalism/Public Relations, USA and North America Studies, Italy, European Societies in Comparison, International Security Politics, Gender Studies and Social Theory. In addition there are accompanying courses like Peace Studies, European Information Carrier, as well as different Summer and Winter Schools with the Universities of Trento (Italy) and in the Asiatic area (China, Thailand, the Philippines, Indonesia, Viet Nam), which supplements the study program.

In the future the area of Media/Journalism/Public Relations is to be institutionalized and be developed in co-operation with Italian and German universities to an international study program in an international compound. For the teachings guest lecturers from around the world are regularly invited. With numerous prestigious foreign universities intensively used studying exchange programs exist.

 

Research
The School of Social and Politcal Sciences stresses its leading international orientation particularly within the field of scientific research. So far the scientific employees used systematically international research contacts and have been guest lecturers or research fellows at foreign universities. The faculty’s main research center "European Governance and Civil Society" structured trans-disciplinary is covering the full thematic range of the research interests and offers docking points, because of topic clusters, in collegial cross-linkings and research co-operations of members of the faculty. Further main points of research exist in the areas of Social Theory: Action-Culture-Evolution as in the inter-faculty main research center Gender-Identities-Discourses-Transformation, in which the faculty is involved in charge personnel-wise.

Since 2010 our research centers are organized within a new research platform established in cooperation with the Innsbruck School of Management and is called "Organizations and Society". This once more stresses our aim of transdisciplinarity within our research goals.

 

Regional, national and international cross-linking
Location-caused the faculty wants to make itself in particular useful for the region Tyrol/West-Austria/South Tyrol/Province of Trento. The employees of the faculty will be available, as hitherto for extramural activities, to give information on the studying program, which is provided and formed for these regions and especially for the students from these regions. In the coming years the faculty will increasingly develop it’s regional, national and international co-operations. Already existing co-operations are to be further maintained and preferably strengthened, since they promote concrete chances for European oriented research and teachings in a border-crossing international network, which represent the core goals of the general principle of the Innsbruck School of Political Science and Sociology.