Short duration programmes

Specialised online courses

Course duration
one month
Study language
Tuition fee
Free of charge

Course details

Study format

Each course has 32 teaching hours consisting of lectures and seminars. Within each course, the selected participants will undergo intensive studies and earn 1.5 ECTS credit points upon passing the exam associated with their course.

Course sessions take place on specified days via Zoom platform. In total, the participants will meet 3 times a week. All course participants will also have access to the RGSL study portal, where course materials will be available.

Participants are expected to fulfil the assignments during the course as well as pass an exam upon its completion.

Eligible participant profile

Eligible candidates are professionals from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, with at least two years of work experience in the public sector, non-governmental organisations or academia, and an undergraduate degree (bachelor level degree).

Course specialisations

•    Economic Development and International Trade
•    European Political Economy
•    Macroeconomics
•    International Economics
•    European Union Law
•    Fundamental Rights
•    Public International Law
•    International Conflict and Dispute Settlement
•    Good Governance
•    Challenges to Democracies
•    Anti-Corruption
•    European Integration and Decision Making

A more precise schedule of courses will be announced shortly. 

April 2021: European Integration and Decision Making

The course will take place throughout April 2021. 

The course objective is to explain the institutional system in the European Union and to emphasize the interaction between the EU institutions and power-relation in the decision-making process. Course participants will also be introduced with Latvia’s experience in the EU integration process.

The course will be taught by RGSL Professor Dr.Ilze Rūse, who is also a senior diplomat at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Latvia. She holds a Dr.phil. in Political Science from the University of Salzburg, Centre of European Union Studies, 2011, as well as Master’s Degree in International Relations from the Stockholm University, 2000.

May 2021: Public International Law

The course will take place throughout May 2021. 

The course introduces key concepts of international law: sources of law (custom, treaties, soft law, etc.); subjects of law (states, others); territory; statehood; recognition; jurisdiction, immunity from jurisdiction, etc. The participants will navigate through modern treaty law-and-practice. This course is of relevance not only to participants in (senior) government positions but also to those employed in civil society who need to understand how public international law works. This course is interactive with ample opportunity for classroom discussion.

The course will be taught by RGSL Visiting Professor Tjaco van den Hout. Educated in international law at Leiden University, he pursued a career in the Dutch diplomatic service rising to the level of Deputy Secretary-General of the Dutch Foreign Ministry. He subsequently served as Secretary-General of the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague. After nine years at the helm of this international organization, he returned to diplomatic service and was appointed Ambassador to Thailand, Myanmar (Burma), Cambodia and Laos — a post he held until the middle of 2011.

June 2021: Challenges to Democracies

The course will take place throughout June 2021. 

It analyses these contemporary trends over four sessions. The first two sessions examine the nature of democracy and contemporary authoritarianism, outlining processes of regime change, particularly focusing on transition, democratization, democratic consolidation and more recent trends of democratic backsliding and breakdown. The third session focuses on the impact of modern populism on democratic regimes. The final session considers different responses to these contemporary challenges.

The course will be taught by RGSL Visiting Professor Dr.Soc.Pol. Daunis Auers. He is a co-founder and director of Certus think-tank, Associate Professor of Comparative Politics at the University of Latvia and was a Jean Monnet Professor (2013-2016) of European integration. He has been a Fulbright Scholar at the University of California-Berkeley (2005-2006) and a Baltic-American Freedom Foundation Scholar at Wayne State University in Detroit (2014). He has published widely on Baltic and European politics.

July 2021: International Conflict and Dispute Settlement

Participants of the course in International Conflict and Dispute Settlement will gain insight into the mechanisms of international dispute resolution and an understanding of how they function. In the process, participants will also have familiarized themselves with international cases that in light of their significance have attracted worldwide attention.

The course is highly interactive: the ‘Socratic method’ is used to engage participants, encourage debate and stimulate critical thinking about the subject matter.

The course will be taught by RGSL Visiting Professor Tjaco van den Hout. Educated in international law at Leiden University, he pursued a career in the Dutch diplomatic service rising to the level of Deputy Secretary-General of the Dutch Foreign Ministry. He subsequently served as Secretary-General of the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague. After nine years at the helm of this international organization, he returned to diplomatic service and was appointed Ambassador to Thailand, Myanmar (Burma), Cambodia and Laos — a post he held until the middle of 2011.

October 2021: Economic Development and International Trade

The course will take place throughout October 2021.

The course will present the economic development options of small and medium states/
economies in the modern trade and financial environment. From the international political economy perspective, the course will address the fundamentals of open market economies, role of the financial sector and institutional, and the political framework that the European Union and the Eurozone provides for economic activity in the global trade relations, as well as the role and place of international financial system in national economies. This course is interactive with ample opportunity for classroom discussion.

Course is taught by Dr. Karlis Bukovskis, the Deputy Director at the Latvian Institute of International Affairs (LIIA). Bukovskis is also an Assistant Professor at Riga Stradins University, where he focuses on the global political economy, the international financial system and the European Union. In 2021 Dr. Bukovskis was a Fulbright Fellow at the Foreign Policy Institute of Johns Hopkins SAIS. He acquired master’s degrees from the University of Latvia and the University of Helsinki, and a doctoral degree (Dr. sc. pol) in International Politics from Riga Stradins University. 

He is the author of numerous articles and the scientific editor of several popular books on the European Union issues. Bukovskis has dealt with European Union institutional, political and economic developments while serving at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Latvia, at the Secretariat of the Latvian Presidency of the Council of the European Union (where he developed the Presidency’s six-month work program), and at the Ministry of Finance of Latvia. Dr. Bukovskis also produces and co-hosts a program on Latvian Radio 1 in which he analyses the political economy of various world countries.

November 2021: European Political Economy

The course will take place throughout November 2021.

Although predominantly economic in its form, the EU is a political project by its very nature. This course will address European integration from a political-economic perspective. It aims to reveal the impact of both political and economic factors in shaping the Single Market and the Single Currency, the euro. What opportunities and constraints do the interactions between political and economic logic create for different European actors? What can other states learn from the EU’s experience? This course is interactive with ample opportunity for classroom discussion.

The course is taught by PhD cand. Aldis Austers. Adis Austers was awarded a degree of engineering in administration of business foreign relations at Riga Technical University in 1995 and a degree of master of advanced international studies at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna in 1998. During his career as a diplomat at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, from 1995 to 2002, Austers was posted at the Mission of Latvia to the EU, where he was responsible for economic cooperation affairs between Latvia and the EU, and the coordination of Latvia’s accession negotiations to the EU. From 2003 to 2011 Austers worked for the Bank of Latvia as a specialized attaché in the rank of counselor at the Permanent Representation of Latvia to the EU and was in charge of financial regulation, monetary policy, the exchange rate, and general economic policy affairs. 

Currently, Austers is a researcher at Latvia’s Institute of International Affairs and at the Institute of European Policies Research of the Latvian Academy of Sciences. Austers is also a guest lecturer at the Riga Graduate School of Law and at the University of Latvia. His fields of interest include monetary economics, political economics, the migration of people, and European integration.

January 2022: International Economics

The course will take place throughout January 2022.

International Economics course combines the most important aspects of international trade, trade policy tools and monetary economics. First part analyses gains from trade and resulting income redistribution between economic agents (in the short run and in the long run) by revising main trade models (Ricardo, Heckscher-Ohlin, Pure Exchange, Immobile Factor, Specific Factor). Second part reviews main trade policies (import tariff, import quota, export subsidy, export tax) in a large and small country environments, analyzes its gains and losses to economic agents (with and without externalities), and how these trade policies might be replicated with domestic policies. Third part presents the impact of exchange rate movements on international trade flows by employing tools of Mundell-Fleming model.

Olegs Krasnopjorovs got a PhD in Economics (subfield of Econometrics) from the University of Latvia. Before he got a Master's Degree in Economics (Mathematical Economics) and Bachelor's Degree (Analytical Economics) from the University of Latvia. Moreover, he graduated several study courses in macroeconomics and econometrics in Austria, Germany, Switzerland and the UK.

Olegs Krasnopjorovs won several competitions for young economists, later – participated in European Central Bank working groups and in international conferences.  He has expert rights in the field of Economics from Latvian Council of Science, he is a member of Strategic Management Council in education research of the Ministry of Education and Science, as well as a Deputy Director of University of Latvia Productivity Institute (“LV PEAK”). Author of several Bank of Latvia working papers and more than 100 publicistic articles.

Olegs research interests cover the topics of labour market, inflation forecasting, productivity, structural reform impact on economic growth and convergence, as well as analysis of education quality. He participates in drafting Latvia's macroeconomic projections and in negotiations with international institutions.

Olegs Krasnopjorovs is also actively engaged in young economists training by supervising internships at Latvijas Banka, lecturing at the University of Latvia (Faculty of Business, Administration and Economics) and supervising graduation papers in Stockholm School of Economics in Riga.

January - February 2022: European Union Law

The course will take place throughout January and the beginning of February 2022.

The course will be taught by Inga Reine, Judge at the General Court of the European Union. Inga Reine graduated in law from the University of Latvia and obtained a master’s degree at the European Inter-University Centre for Human Rights and Democratisation. She began her professional career as a lawyer at the Latvian National Human Rights Office and later worked as an adviser to the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in missions in Kosovo and Montenegro. From 2003 to 2012 she held the position of Latvia’s representative at international human-rights organisations. During this time she was also a member of the Steering Committee for Human Rights (CDDH) of the Council of Europe. Between 2012 and 2016 she was a legal adviser at the Permanent Representation of Latvia to the European Union. Inga Reine is a Judge at the General Court of the European Union since 8 June 2016.

The course will provide an introduction into the European Union Law and decision-making process. The main objective of the course is to allow participants to understand the cornerstones of interaction between EU Member States and EU institutions on the following issues: Defining and implementing EU internal and external priorities and policies; Laying down EU legal norms; Implementing EU law.


February 2022: Fundamental Rights

The course will take place throughout February 2022!

The course will embark to discuss the main tenets of human rights. It will start by general introduction to historical and philosophical foundations of international human rights law and will then proceed with an examination of the principles of human rights implementation and the interaction between national and international levels in this regard. National, regional and international human rights protection systems will be explored. Further, the course will focus on the examination of the substantive human rights law, offering a comparative perspective involving a number of human rights protection instruments. Such rights as the right to life, prohibition of inhumane or degrading treatment, or torture, the right to liberty and security, the right to fair trial, the right to private life, freedom of expression etc. will be discussed and analysed, especially considering the contemporary and emerging challenges associated with digitalisation, climate change, global pandemic and global security threats.

The course will be taught by Dr. Arina Melse and Ilze Tralmaka.
Dr. Arina Melse is Visiting Lecturer at the Riga Graduate School of Law and Lead Researcher at the non-governmental organization Baltic Human Rights Society. She was Affiliated Researcher at the University of Copenhagen’s iCourts, Centre of Excellence for International Courts. She has worked for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia and the International Criminal Court in The Hague. Dr Melse specializes in and teaches International Human Rights Law, Public International Law, and International Humanitarian Law.

Ilze Tralmaka is Senior Legal and Policy Officer at the international non-governmental organization Fair Trials. She specializes in international and European human rights, with a particular focus on fundamental rights in criminal justice and European and comparative criminal law and procedure. She has previously worked as a Senior Legal adviser for the Latvian Parliament leading its litigation before the Constitutional Court of Latvia. Ilze holds an LLM in public international law from Leiden University and the University of Latvia.

February 2022: Digitalization and e-governance

The course will take place throughout February 2022!

For the first time the specialized course on digital aspects of public sector will be offered throughout February 2022 – “Digitalization and e-governance”. The field of technologies, its application, governance and impact is new and constantly evolving, yet we have to apply it in public sector along the ongoing innovations and evolvement of the technology.

The course will provide an overview and guidance in key sectors for public service to develop its own policy and implementation tools. We will take closer look in existing experience and case studies to practice concrete application of policy and its tools, but also cover some international policy aspects that set the trends globally.
The course is structured in a few blocks beginning (1) with more general introduction in technologies, how the platform economy and social networks developed and shaped society (2) understanding the digital transformation of public sector, its role and organization in various fields like education, health, security and taking closer look at (3) cybersecurity field and (4) information space and civic participation in public policy. Some of the lectures will be joined by guest speakers from the field to share first had experience.

The course will be taught by Ieva Ilvesa, who is MA graduate from the University of Latvia specializing in international relations and security policy and MIPP graduate from the Johns Hopkins University. In addition, she has graduated certified course on Cybersecurity from Harvard and Digital Transformation course from MIT.

She has worked for public sector more than 25 years starting with career in foreign and security policy and focusing on digital aspects for the last decade. She led the drafting of the first national cybersecurity strategy and headed the team setting up the NATO Strategic Communications Center of Excellence. Currently she works as Advisor to the President of Latvia on digital policy and is board member of Electronic Communications Office of Latvia. She advocates for tech-savvy public sector serving its citizens, responsible use of technologies in private and public sector as well as advancing the digital skills of people. She is mentor of Riga Tech Girls to advocate for digital education among women and leads the project “Computer for every child” in Latvia. Ieva Ilves writes on digital policy regularly in national outlets, she shared her COVID tracing app experience to the Guardian and has recently published a study on the same topic in the Cyber Security Peer-Reviewed Journal.

March 2022: Good Governance and Anti-Corruption

The course will take place throughout March 2022!

In this course, participants will learn the basics of good governance and how to counter corruption on a national level. The course includes an introduction to modern public sector governance and covers a mixture of concepts and practical tools for preventing and controlling corruption, featuring case studies from Latvia and other European Union countries. The course focuses on the links between integrity, transparency, and other good governance principles and anti-corruption, and also explores modern forms of corruption and crimes related to corruption.  

After completing the course participants will understand the fundamentals of successful anti-corruption approaches and the main challenges of designing and implementing national level anti-corruption reforms.

The course will be taught by Liene Gātere, Anti-corruption and good governance expert; Iveta Kažoka, Director and senior policy analyst in good governance at local, national and EU level of the think-tank "Providus"; Līga Stafecka, Senior policy analyst in anti-corruption and good governance of think-tank "Providus".

March 2022: Project Management for Public Sector

The course will take place throughout March 2022!

A successful Project Manager must simultaneously manage the four basic elements of a project: resources, time, money, and scope. These elements are all interrelated, each must be managed effectively and all must be managed together if the project, and the project manager, is to have a successful outcome. The course will cover the project lifecycle and its application from inception to completion and delivery. Because of these factors, projects are now an essential process in business.

The course will be taught by Waleed Gumaa. He has been a lecturer for the last 12 years, teaching various Business and Project Management courses and a strong management background coupled with consulting experience throughout some of globe’s leading organisations for over 17 years. Waleed has experience in consulting and management in a wide spectrum of industries ranging from Aviation, Finance, Technology, Recruitment, Government and Education, and this serves to strengthen what he brings; the practical aspects to the classroom to the benefit of the students.

He holds an M.B.A. in International Business & Strategy from Bayes Business School, London, UK complemented by a B.A. in International Relations from Clark University, Massachusetts, USA as well as specialised courses from Harvard and SOAS in global interdependence and development economics.

Currently he is the director of Master Programmes at the Riga Graduate School of Law, Riga, Latvia, where he is responsible for 6 Master programmes. He teaches 5 courses on various business topics. He is also a guest faculty member at the Duale Hochschule Baden-Württemberg Mannheim, Germany,  Faculty of  Transport and Logistics where he delivers lectures on business Strategy.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: I am a national of a country that is not on the list of eligible countries. Can I apply?
A: Unfortunately, no. The list of eligible countries is exhaustive.

Q: Is there an age limit for the programme?
A: No, no age limits are applied.

Q: What is the minimum IELTS/TOEFL score?
A: The required minimum level is 525 points for TOEFL (for a computer test - 196; Internet-based test - 69-70) and 5.5 for IELTS.

Q: I don’t have an IELTS/TOEFL score. Could I prove my English proficiency by some other means?
A: Yes, as an alternative, you may submit a letter from your employer, confirming your ability to undertake studies in English.

Q: I am an undergraduate student. Can I apply?
A: Candidates can apply to the programme if they have obtained at least a first-level university degree (Bachelor degree) at the time of application.

Q: I have a University degree, but not in Law. Can I apply?
A: Yes, having a degree in Law is not obligatory.

Q: What kind of professional experience is required?
A: Applicants should have recent professional experience (at least past 2-3 years) in the public sector (government and municipal institutions, public offices), non-governmental organisations or academia.

Q: I am working at a law firm/banking sector/limited liability company. Can I apply?
A: Regretfully, applicants working in the private sector are not eligible.

Q: I am not working at the moment. Can I apply?
A: Candidates with no job experience for the past few years are not eligible.

Q: Can I send you some documents after the application deadline?
A: No new documents will be accepted after the application deadline.

Q: How can I submit my recommendation letter?
A: You need to indicate your referee’s e-mail in the application form. Then, your referee would submit a recommendation letter directly to the application system.

Q: The referee has received a link to the application system. How much time does he/she have to submit the reference?
A: The referee has to submit a reference until the application deadline.

Q: Can I participate in two or more courses?
A: No, you can only participate in one specialised online course.

Q: I applied for one course but got rejected. I am also interested in the topic of another specialised course – can I apply?
A: Yes, you may apply again. Not being selected for one course does not preclude you from applying for other specialised courses.

Q: Will these courses take place in Riga?
A: No, the specialised courses take place online. 

Q: Do I have to attend all the lectures?
A: In order to receive 1.5 ECTS, you have to attend at least 80% of all lectures and pass a final exam.

Q: I got selected for one course, but I cannot participate due to personal reasons. Can I transfer my place to another course?
A: No, regretfully, places can not be transferred. If you are interested in the topic of another course, you would have to apply and pass the selection again.

Q: What language is are courses taught in?
A: All courses are taught exclusively in English.

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Key information

Eligible countries• Kazakhstan
• Kyrgyzstan
• Tajikistan
• Turkmenistan
• Uzbekistan