About Us

The International Association for Political Science Students

The International Association for Political Science Students (IAPSS) is a platform for political science students and students interested in political science issues. The association is international, politically independent, non-profit and student-run, and aims to have global impact in the political science sphere. IAPSS seeks to strengthen the academic profile and skills of all members by offering various opportunities for development.

With twenty years of existence behind its back, IAPSS currently embraces over about 10 association members and almost 1,000 individual members spread all over the world. It evolved from a loose network to an association with an official address and mailbox in Nijmegen, the Netherlands, while the IAPSS Executive Committee is working internationally on a daily basis to initiate and coordinate projects and activities.

Through such projects, IAPSS is striving to give its members a sense of responsibility concerning their role in creating an improved political and social environment, as well as the skills and knowledge necessary to act in this direction. It does so by organizing conferences where students from all over the world can exchange their knowledge (IAPSS World Congress, the Autumn Convention and Academic Conferences), a Winter and Summer School and by organizing Study Trips, which grant first hand insight into the live of political institutions, and by regularly creating and distributing academic and opinion publications (POLITIKON – the IAPSS Journal of Political Science, Encuentro Latinoamericano – Revista de Ciencia Política, A Different View – the IAPSS online blog).

The Association

  • Our Mission

    The International Association for Political Science Students (IAPSS) is the worldwide representation of students of political science and related studies. IAPSS strives to deliver a sustainable academic contribution to the education of its members, to foster exchange among young political scientists across the globe and to promote social and scientific responsibility. We do this by offering a multiplicity of events, publications, professionalization and career services as well as lobbying for political science interests on the international level.

  • A Global Player

    IAPSS embraces more approximately 1,000 individual members and 10 association members from all over the world. The Association – founded in 1998 in Leiden (the Netherlands) – is exclusively student-led, non-profit orientated and politically independent. The IAPSS Headquarters is located in Nijmegen (the Netherlands) – hosted and supported by Radboud University Nijmegen, IAPSS’ premium partner and itself a leading institution in the political science arena in Europe.

  • Partners

    On the international level, IAPSS works closely together with the International Political Science Association (IPSA), the European Consortium for Political Science Research (ECPR), the American Political Science Association (APSA) and the International Studies Association (ISA). Additionally, IAPSS permanently cooperates with all major European youth organizations in the field of political science, education and youth affairs, including the European Students’ Union (ESU), the Erasmus Student Network (ESN) and the Young European Federalists (JEF). It also holds institutional ties with UNESCO and the Council of Europe for many years.

  • Three Pillars

    Our portfolio and annual agenda provided with great dedication to our members is built up around three pillars. In each pillar, we conceptualize and realize activities, projects and services that contribute to the academic, personal and social development of our members. Worldwide. 365 days all year long.

    1. IAPSS Events – Global Political Science Gatherings
    2. IAPSS Academic – Journals, Publishing, Delegations & Research
    3. Professionalization and Career Development

    IAPSS’ unique international network of more than 12,000 members enables us to influence debates, initiatives and scientific developments internationally. More than 115,000 individuals are following IAPSS through social media and regular consultations are taking place with all international partners in the field of political science.

The Story Behind

The idea of establishing an association for political science students was born in 1996 in Rome (Italy), when SPIL (the Society for Political Science Students in Leiden, the Netherlands) visited its local counterparts in Rome.

One Association for all Political Science Students Worldwide

Most academic disciplines already had student networks, but for students of political science there was none. By registering its first statutes, IAPSS was formally established in Leiden on October 31, 1998. IAPSS was meant as an umbrella uniting local political science associations and students by granting them access to a constant information flow of current matters in the field of political sciences. Furthermore, IAPSS should provide a platform for the exchange of ideas and for help on studies and research. Since IAPSS’ centre of gravity was Europe, for the first three years of its existence, it managed to unify 17 association members in Europe. During those years it was lead in succession by the local students associations from Leiden (the Netherlands), Oslo (Norway), Debrecen (Hungary), and Rome (Italy) in 2001.

A First Permanent Headquarters in Slovenia

Probably the most important turning point in the history of IAPSS had its beginnings in the year 2003, with local association member POLITUSS Ljubljana managing the fate of IAPSS. At the legendary General Assembly – the highest decision making body of IAPSS – in Ljubljana (Slovenia), the delegates decided for an important step, leading the Association from a loose network to a more stable and predictable organization by establishing a permanent seat and secretariat at the University of Ljubljana.

While the association was led by a joint Executive Committee consisting of local member associations from Marburg (Germany) and Cluj-Napoca (Romania) during 2004, the work on the implementation of the permanent seat and secretariat began in order to be functional at the start of the Executive Committee mandate 2004/2005.

Expanding Beyond Europe in 2001

One crucial turning point occurred in 2001, when together with seven additional European associations three associations from the African continent joined. IAPSS turned into the direction of becoming a worldwide network. Just one year after this first transcontinental enlargement, the first local political science student associations from North and South America as well as Asia became member of IAPSS.

2013: Back to the Netherlands

At the General Assembly in Bremen (Germany), the delegates the association agreed that the IAPSS Headquarters should relocated to Nijmegen (the Netherlands) by 2013. This resolution was carried out by the 16th IAPSS General Assembly in Rome (Italy), in March 2013. The head office was moved to the Netherlands again, near to the city where it once has been founded. Nowadays, IAPSS’ operational base is embedded at one of Europe’s leading universities in political science: Radboud University Nijmegen.

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