In order to be admitted to the Program, candidates must hold:

  • A first degree (Bachelor’s) from a Greek university, or

  • The equivalent from a foreign institution.

The number of postgraduate students admitted each year is fifteen (15) maximum. Every academic year, towards the end of the Spring semester, an open call is published inviting candidates to submit their application to enter the Programme. The application is submitted at the School Office and must be accompanied by the following required documents (copies):

  • First degree,

  • Transcript for all the duration of their undergraduate studies,

  • A motivation letter between 500-1000 words highlighting their research interests and substantiating their commitment to study political theory and enter the Programme,

  • A foreign language certificate (English, French or German) or a certificate concerning Greek (in the case of candidates from abroad) indicating ‘good knowledge’ (B2).

The selection process is organized in two stages: written examinations & interview. Both stages take place during September, each year.

Covering the history of political and philosophical ideas from antiquity up until late modernity, this MA Program places emphasis on modern and contemporary political theory including the study of ideologies and political discourses. It endorses a multi-dimensional methodological perspective in order to encourage critical and independent thinking and to provide the necessary skills for a reflexive analysis of political ideas, projects and initiatives.

The total number of ECTS needed for the completion of the Programme and for graduation is 90, from which 60 are taken through course examinations and the remaining 30 through the successful completion and defence of the diploma thesis (MA dissertation).

All the courses are taught in Greek. MA dissertations can be submitted in English.

List of postgraduate courses (2023-4):


Compulsory courses


Course title



Modern political theory and philosophy (Sevastakis)



Contemporary political theory (Kioupkiolis)



Theories of social movements (Kavoulakos)



Compulsory courses


Course title



Classical political theory and philosophy (Stylianou)



Ideology critique and political discourse analysis (Stavrakakis)



Political and moral philosophy (Betsakos)



Diploma Thesis (30 ECTS)

Upon completing their studies, graduates who have successfully followed the Postgraduate Program in Political Theory will be equipped with the following skills and competences, which correspond to the learning outcomes of the MA Program:

  • With the necessary political-theoretical knowledge allowing them to map and understand political phenomena with increased scientific rigor.

  • With the necessary tools and methods, emanating from various theoretical and philosophical traditions associated with political science and related social sciences (sociology, law, comparative literature, qualitative social research, moral philosophy, etc.) enabling them to research political life in relatively autonomous and original ways.

  • With the established critical perspective endowing every graduate with the ability to act with scientific ethos, resourcefulness and self-confidence within complex research and professional frameworks.

  • With the practical resources facilitating the collection and scientific evaluation of multi-level information and evidence, the systematic processing and synthesis of elements originating from various sources (conventional and digital), the rigorous scientific questioning as well as the development of organized and convincing arguments in written and spoken discourse (both in Greek and in one foreign language).

  • With the capacity to effectively handle multiple challenges in a synthetic manner, to operate productively within individual and collective settings and to actively participate in the design and implementation of complex scientific and professional projects demonstrating social and democratic responsibility.


Nikolas Sevastakis

Nikolas Sevastakis studied political science at Panteion University (Athens). He continued his studies at postgraduate level at the Institute of Political Studies of the University Lumieres‐Lyon II and received his doctorate from the Department of Political Science at Panteion University, submitting a thesis on the thought of Martin Heidegger. From 1999 to 2006 he taught political and social philosophy in the Department of Sociology at the University of the Aegean before moving to the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. His research focuses on the theories and critique of modernity as well as on values and ideology. His main publications include two collections of essays, Psyche and Idols (Kritiki, Athens 1997) and Towards the Romantic Crisis (Erasmos, Athens 1998), and the monographs: The Alchemy of Happiness (Polis, Athens 2000); Banal Country (Savvalas, Athens 2004), Hospitable Nihilism: A Study of Homo Democraticus (Estia, Athens 2008), Essays and Readings. Politics, philosophy, literature (Opportuna, Athens 2011). He has co-authored with Yannis Stavrakakis, Populism, anti-populism and crisis (Nefeli, Athens 2012). Recent articles include “the dialectics of amnesia”, Synchrona Themata, 120, July 2013; “Theories, critic, the Left. Some thoughts” in the volume Theory, literature, the left (Taxideftis, Athens 2013); “The Greek neo-nazism and the critical juncture”, Synchrona Themata, 121, October 2013; “Addendum. Thoughts about the governance and the present dangers” Synchrona Themata, 130-131, December 2015; “Let us forget the totalitarian: Between theory, memory and history”, Neo Planodion, 2, Summer 2014; “Liberalism, ‘radical critique’ and veils of the crisis”, Neo Planodion, 3, Autumn 2015; “Money-merchandise, literature and cultural crisis. Some thoughts”, in the volume The glimmer of money in modern Greek literature. From the Critical Renaissance of the 21th century (Kostas and Eleni Ouranis Foundation, Athens 2016).

E‐mail: nsevas@polsci.auth.gr

Yannis Stavrakakis

Yannis Stavrakakis studied political science at Panteion University (Athens) and received his MA degree from the Ideology and Discourse Analysis Programme at the University of Essex, where he also completed his PhD. He has worked at the Universities of Essex and Nottingham before taking up a position at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in 2006. His research primarily focuses on contemporary political theory (with emphasis on psychoanalytic and poststructuralist approaches) and on the analysis of ideology and discourse in late modern societies (with emphasis on populism, environmentalism, nationalism and post‐democracy). He is the author of Lacan and the Political (Routledge, London & New York 1999) and The Lacanian Left (Edinburgh University Press/ SUNY Press, Edinburgh and Albany 2007) and co‐editor of Discourse Theory and Political Analysis (Manchester University Press, Manchester 2000), Lacan & Science (Karnac, London 2002), Aspects of Censorship in Greece (Nefeli, Athens 2008 [in Greek]) and The Political in Contemporary Art (Ekkremes, Athens 2008 [in Greek]). He has co-authored, with Nikolas Sevastakis, Populism, Anti-populism and Crisis (Nefeli, Athens 2012 [in Greek]). His most recent publications include the introductory study, Populism: Myths, Stereotypes and Reorientations (Hellenic Open University Press, Athens 2019 [in Greek]) and the edited volume, Routledge Handbook of Psychoanalytic Political Theory (Routledge, New York 2019). He has served as vice-president of the Hellenic Political Science Association and co-convener of the Populism Specialist Group of the British Political Studies Association. During the period 2014-15 he headed the research project, “POPULISMUS: Populist Discourse and Democracy”.

E‐mail: yanstavr@yahoo.co.uk

Aris Stilianou

Aris Stylianou studied philosophy at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. He continued his studies at the postgraduate level at the Paris‐IV University and received his doctorate from Paris‐I at Sorbonne (1987-1993). He has taught at the Schools of Journalism and Mass Media (1995‐1997), Philosophy and Pedagogy (1997‐2002), and at the School of Political Sciences of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki from 2002 onwards. His research interests include political philosophy and political theory, as well as translation. His publications include: Histoire et politique chez Spinoza (Atelier National de Reproduction des Thèses, Lille, 1994); “Spinoza et le temps historique” (Les Études Philosophiques, 1997); “Spinoza et l’histoire antique” (Studia Spinozana, 2001); Social Contract Theories. From Grotius to Rousseau (Polis, Athens 2006); “Sulla funzione politica degli esempi storici in Spinoza”, Storia politica della moltitudine. Spinoza e la modernita (Derive Approdi, Rome 2009); “Historicité, multitude et démocratie”, (Astérion, 10, 2012). He has edited “Spinoza: Towards Freedom. Ten Contemporary Greek Essays” (Axiologika, special issue 2, Exantas, Athens 2002) as well as the “Special issue on classic rationalism”, Philosphical Memorandum, vol 7 (Polis, Athens, May 2008). He has also translated and edited philosophical texts.

E-mail: stilianu@polsci.auth.gr


Associate Professors

Karolos Kavoulakos

Karolos Iosif Kavoulakos was elected lecturer in 2009, assistant professor in 2019 and associate professor in 2023. He has studied at the Panteion University, Athens, Freie Universität, Berlin and The National and Kapodistrian University, Athens, from which he received his PhD. He has worked as researcher at the National Center of Social Research, the Research Center for Gender Equality and the University of Thessaly. Since 2011 he is a Visiting Fellow at the Department of Social and Policy Sciences, Bath University; since 2008 he is also teaching at the Hellenic Open University. His research interests include social movements, civil society, collective mobilisation, urban policy and urban sociology. He has participated in several research projects and published in Greek and International periodicals as well as collective works. His main publications are related to urban social movements, alternative political and economic ventures and racist mobilisation. His recent publications include: (with G. Gritzas) Alternative Economic and Political Space: Civil Society, Social Movements and Spatial Development (Kallipos 2016), “Diverse Economies and Alternative Spaces. An overview of Approaches and Practices”, European Urban and Regional Studies (2016), “Movements and Alternative Space in Crisis Stricken Greece: A New Civil Society” (2015), in N. Georgarakis & N. Demertzis (Eds.), The Political Portrait of Greece. Crisis and Deconstruction of Politics. (Gutenberg, Athens 2015). “Public Space and Urban Movements” in Th. Maloutas (Ed.) Atlas of the Social Geography of Athens. Harokopio University, electronic publication, (2016), K. I. Kavoulakos & N. Serdedakis “Collective Action and Social Movements”, in A. I. Metaxas (Ed.) Political Science: interdisciplinary and contemporary investigation of political action (Sideris, Athens 2016), “Movements and Public Spaces in Athens: Spaces of Freedom, Spaces of Democracy, Spaces of Authority”, in G. Kandylis, R. Kaftatzoglou, Th Maloutas, M. Petrou, N. Souliotis (Eds.) The City Center as (New) Political Challenge (EKKE, Athens 2013).

E-mail: kkavoula@gmail.com

Alexandros Kioupkiolis

Alexandros Kioupkiolis studied Greek literature (classics) at the University of Athens, Faculty of Philosophy, and political theory at the University of Essex (MA in Political Theory) and the University of Oxford (DPhil). He has taught political theory at the University of Oxford and the University of Cyprus. In 2009 he was elected lecturer at the School of Political Sciences of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and he now serves as assistant professor. His research interests focus on modern philosophies of freedom, contemporary philosophies of justice, theories of democracy, analyses and critiques of power. Recent publications include: ‘The Post‐political Multitude in the Streets of Athens. Two Theses on Radical Democracy” (Synchrona Themata, 2008), “Post‐critical Liberalism and Agonistic Freedom” (Contemporary Political Theory, 2008), “Keeping it Open: Ontology, Ethics, Knowledge and Radical Democracy” (Philosophy and Social Criticism, 2009), ‘Three Paradigms of Modern Freedom’ (Εuropean Journal of Political Theory, 2009), Freedom After the Critique of Foundations: Marx, Liberalism and Agonistic Autonomy (Palgrave-Macmillan, Hampshire 2012), “The commons of liberty” (Exarchia, Athens 2014). He has also co-edited: Radical Democracy and Collective Movements Today. The Biopolitics of the Multitude Versus the Hegemony of the People (Ashgate, 2014, Turkish translation: Koç University Press, 2016), Discourse theory: Creative applications (Gutenberg, Athens 2015).

E‐mail: alkioup@polsci.auth.gr

Specialized Teaching Staff Members

Vassilios Betsakos

Vassilios Betsakos studied classical literature at AUTH. In his postgraduate studies he studied the moral and political philosophy of Aristotle. His doctoral research focused on the reception of Aristotelian philosophy by byzantine theology and philosophy. He worked in Secondary Education from 1998 to 2021. From 2005 to 2015 he taught at AUTH as a contract employee. For three years (2016-2019) he was a member of the Collaborating Scientific Staff of the Hellenic Open University. His research interests focus on Aristotelian philosophy (physics, ethics, politics). For the past two years he has been studying the political discourse of ancient Greek writers in the context of writing a study with the same title.

E-mail: bbetsakos@polsci.auth.gr

Entering and following the Program is offered to students gratis. No fees are charged to students for their postgraduate studies.

Director: Professor Yannis Stavrakakis

Steering Committee: Nicolas Sevastakis, Yannis Stavrakakis, Aris Stylianou, Karolos Iosif Kavoulakos, Alexandros Kioupkiolis

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