University of Tartu International Summer University Program

After the Empire: The Collapse of Communism and Beyond


Visit Estonia and Latvia, while learning about the crucial changes that occurred in these countries after the collapse of communism. This unique, interactive summer program takes students to three countries and three universities to explore social, economic, and judicial issues through lectures, discussions, and excursions. Cultural activities include visits to renowned historic sites, museums, art galleries, and theater performances.

Riga, Latvia; Tallinn, Estonia; Tartu, Estonia

Language of Instruction: English


ISEP-Direct Summer for all ISEP member students    


3-week programme in cooperation with the University of Latvia
5–25 July, 2016 in Riga, Tallinn and Tartu

The aim of this programme is to introduce the crucial changes in two Baltic societies, brought up by the collapse of communism. The programme will introduce the challenges and achievements of social, economic and political reforms and their past, present and future impacts on local as well as on international scale. Students will learn of state-of-the-art achievements generated by quick and efficient transformation from state-controlled economic system into free market economy.

Week I in Riga - Latvia: Society, Politics and Economy
Week II in Tallinn - Estonia as a New Silicon Valley: Current Achievements and Future Visions
Week III in Tartu - EU and Russia Transforming: Implications for the Relationship

Lectures and seminars in English on a variety of topics concerning social, political and economic issues will be provided by the professors of the participating universities. Special seminars and meetings with top-qualified practiciones and politicians are part of the programme, as well as visits to governmental and NGO institutions and ro enterprises.

The programme awards 6 ECTS (usually equivalent to 3 US credits).
Level: BA / MA


I-to-I applicants who are not native English speakers must the ISEP Language Proficiency Report. Note: The host institution ultimately determines proficiency level and course eligibility.


See the Membership Directory for details.


Dates: Early to Late July, 2016


May 15, 2016


$4,500 - $5,000


The program cost covers tuition, double-occupancy housing, and transportation during the program from Estonia to Latvia and to Ukraine. All housing is in renovated hostels or hotels. Bed linens, blankets, and towels are provided. NOTE: Cooking facilities are provided in Tallinn; however, meals are not included in the program cost.


Cultural excursions are part of the program and are outlined in the week-by-week Courses section above.


This programme is a joint course offered by two leading universities in two countries and three cities in Estonia and Latvia:

University of Tartu — established in 1632 and one of the most well-known and oldest universities in the Baltic Sea area

University of Latvia — established in 1919 and listed as one of the leading universities in Latvia


The northernmost of the three Baltic States, Estonia has historically served as a crossroads between East and West. Situated on the shores of the Baltic Sea with a population of about 1.5 million, Estonia is slightly larger than Denmark. It also offers students a great case study of successful transition from Soviet past to democracy and recent accession to the European Union.

Latvia, on the Baltic Sea, shares borders with Estonia to the north, Lithuania to the south, and Russia and Belarus to the east. It is a central part of the Baltic States, with a population of 2.5 million people. As a result of the intense Russification during the Soviet occupation from 1945 to 1991, ethnic Latvians make up only 56 percent of the population. Riga, its capital, was founded in 1201 and is by far its largest city; it is also one of Latvia's major ice-free seaports that handles considerable shipping to and from Russia.


“The trip was a blast. I’d like to give a big thanks to ISEP and Mart Susi, who put on an incredible program!” – James Radcliffe, Whitworth University (Washington, USA)


Please consider the following requirements when filling out the online application :

Participant Profile: REQUIRED
Host Request List:
º Placement: SELECT "Summer"
º Site: SELECT "ISEP Direct"
º Country: SELECT "Estonia"
º Institution: SELECT "University of Tartu"
º Program Type: SELECT "After Empire: The Collapse of Communism and Beyond"
Course Request List: For Course Name, enter "After Empire" and click the disc icon.
Language Proficiency: Are you planning to study at a host program where the primary language of instruction is different than your native language? SELECT "No."
Personal Statement: REQUIRED
Academic References: ONE REQUIRED
Transcript: REQUIRED

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