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Summer School Online

Welcome to our summer school community at the University of Amsterdam! Below you can find all sorts of content - lectures, podcasts, articles, and videos - related to our programmes and summer in our city. We will add more content over the coming months so check back regularly for new interviews, mini-lectures or podcast episodes, and follow us on Instagram for updates.

  • Explore Amsterdam online

    The University of Amsterdam is a globally renowned university. With just over forty thousand students and eight thousand employees, the UvA is a focal point within the fabric of Amsterdam. If you want to get a sense of our international education community, take a virtual tour of our Roeterseiland Campus, the home of our UvA summer programmes.

    Curious about the role of the UvA in the fabric of Amsterdam? Visit, an online platform where researchers, policy makers, projects, and community members are brought together to help tackle the big problems of today. 

    Looking to delve into Amsterdam's cultural scene? Many of our city's famous cultural venues have made exciting free online content and tours.

    • The Rijksmuseum | World-renowned collection of Dutch art and artefacts from all ages of Dutch history. Its Gallery of Honour holds some of the most important works of Dutch art. 
    • The Van Gogh Museum | With its famous permanent collection and new pavilion, the Van Gogh Museum is one of Amsterdam's busiest. 
    • The Stedelijk Museum | Amsterdam's museum for modern and contemporary art has featured works by some of the world's most renowned artists. 
    • Allard Pierson Museum | The UvA's very own museum and special collection archives the city's history. 
    • Artis Micropia | The world's only museum dedicated to the fascinating and unseen world of microbes. 
    • De Ceuvel | A hub and urban laboratory for sustainable and circular development, De Ceuvel features (online) events on a variety of topics. 
    • Mediamatic | A collective for art, nature, food and biology in the heart of Amsterdam, Mediamatic is an experimental playground for the senses. 
    • Pakhuis de Zwijger | One of Amsterdam's most famous cultural organizations, De Zwijger organizes online events and pannel discussions on today's most pressing topics. 
  • Academic articles and essential texts

    Urban Studies 

    A key introductory text for many of our urban studies programmes is this Amsterdam city profile on geography, housing, spatial development and politics. One of the authors, Willem Boterman is also a returning guest lecturer for our programmes. Also discussed in both Planning and Living in Cities and Sense, Space and Strategy is this text by John Boy and Justus Uitermark on the representation of cities on social media. Or, you could brush up your Urban Studies knowledge through reading papers by our Academic Director duo, Rowan Arundel & Richard Ronald: about urban form and sustainable communities or on the false promise of homeownership

    Interested in sustainability and circular economies? Read this text about the challenges of tomorrow by Mendel Giezen, Academic Director for The Circular City, or read his article on policy making around the circular economy

    Researchers at the UvA have been teaching on the subject of Placemaking as a collaborative approach to urban planning and design since 2017, and collected their projects on Placemaking in Amsterdam. The website is in Dutch, but projects by our summer students are available in English (for instance, the spark village common room project).

    Amsterdam is recognized around the world as one of the leading cycling cities: but how did we get to where to we are, and what important changes to policy and behaviour are needed to transition to a cycling city? Our colleagues at the Urban Cycling Institute have a team of experts researching cycling as an important part of the fabric of the city. They have also developed an open online course that serves as an excellent introduction to our Planning the Cycling City programme. 

    Globalisation, Economics and Multilateralism 

    Our academic director for Economics: Markets & Society Dawid Walentek and two of his colleagues have recently published an article in Public Choice, in which they are applying evolutionary game theory to global trade cooperation. 

    Andrew Chackhoyan, academic director of Multilateralism, Globalization & Corporate Diplomacy, regularly delivers keynotes, hosts roundtables or joins panel discussions on conferences around the world. Curious? Check out his talk at TEDxBucharest or his Future Societies talk at Web Summit. Andrew also frequently writes for World Economic forum, for instance on tech companies and the public good. Or read his article Four Lessons on Corporate Diplomacy

    Addiction Studies and Mindfulness 

    For some cultural and historic background on the study of addiction, this is one of the key introductory texts for our Summer Institute on Addiction. This text by John Saunders is a good one to read up on definitions and diagnostic criteria. It is also interesting to browse the Jellinek website (Amsterdam's main center for information, prevention and treatment when it comes to alcohol, drugs and addiction) and find out about the why's and how 's of drug testing in the Netherlands or the influence of different drugs on the brain

    For both Addiction Studies and Mindfulness, this text by Brian Ostafin on mindfulness and self-regulation provides key insights. Ostafin has been a guest lecturer in both programmes, in joint as well as individual sessions. 

    Other recommended readings for those interested in our course on Mindfulness and Compassion-based Interventions are this research review on emotion regulation or this text on compassion interventions

    Migration, Social Change and Security Studies 

    A key introductory text for our course Migration and Integration: Refugees, Rights & Realities is Who is a Refugee by Andrew Shacknove. We also always discuss the global trend reports by the UNHCR. The report on 2019 is planned to be online in June. 

    If you are interested in both migration and social change, we recommend this text on immigrant rights activism. Interested in intersectionality and student movements in Amsterdam? Read No Democratisation without Decolonisation. Want to know more about how protest movements are built online? Read this text by Sander van Haperen. These three texts together should give you a feel of the topics discussed in our programme Activism and Social Change

    For those interested in our course Security Governance and Conflict Resolution we recommend this text about the 'world risk society', this text about new wars and contemporary insecurities or academic director Martijn Dekker's essay A Monopoly on Responsibility?

    We also highly recommend this excellent animation on authoritarianism, made by the Political Science department here at the UvA. 

    Sexuality Studies

    Sexuality studies has a rightful home in Amsterdam: the city has long been a safe-haven for anyone who was 'different', and the Dutch mindset of tolerance proved an ideal support for the growing LGBTQ community in Amsterdam, that has only grown since its inception. Those interested in reading more about the intricacies of the Dutch response to homosexuality should start with Gert Hekma and Jan Willem Duyvendak's The Netherlands: Depoliticization of Homosexuality and Homosexualization of Politics.

    Want to know more about sexuality studies in Amsterdam? Visit the website of the Amsterdam Research Centre for Gender and Sexuality and get to know about ongoing research, or visit the Atria Institute on Gender Equality and Women's History online. Or for a different perspective, get in touch with the folks at the Prostitution Information Centre to organize an information session, or lecture. 

    The Anthropocene

    If you want to take a deep-dive into the topic of the Anthropocene, reading Bruno Latour is a great place to start for grasping some key concepts. See if you can access--or consider purchasing-- his book Facing Gaia (2017). Alternatively, there are some lectures by Latour available on Youtube, for instance his talk for the Haus der Kulturen der Welt.  Other scholars we would recommend reading are Timothy Morton and Anna Tsing. 

    Further, The Human Planet by Simon Lewis & Mark Maslin is a well-written pelican introduction to the topic. If you are interested in the way writers and artists are responding to the Anthropocene, this article in the Guardian is an excellent read if only for the many examples discussed. In the creative non-fiction section we would recommend The Sixth Extinction by Elizabeth Colbert (2015) or This Changes Everything by Naomi Klein (2015).

    Epidemics and Social Science

    Read up on people-centered epidemic preparedness and response in this report by the Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development (AIGHD), co-written by academic director Danny de Vries. If you are interested in new Covid-19 related research project, take a look at the project tracker by UKCDR & GloPID-RThe sonar global website is also a great resource. 

    For those interested in a more solid introduction to the social science study of epidemics and pandemics, our academic directors recommend: The Pandemic Perhaps by Carlos Caduff (2015), The Viral Network by Theresa Mackphail (2014), Global Health by Mark Nichter (2008) and Catastrophe & Culture by Hoffman and Oliver-Smith (2002).

    Journalism, Media, and the Politics of Suspicion 

    Analysing the present takes many forms. Coming to terms with the fast pace of the world today, as well as the media we consume is a tall task. If you're interested in putting the present into a long-term perspective, we recommend Dutch journalist and author Rutger Bregman's article in Time: The Moment to Change the World is Right Now. 

    If you are interested in the study of our media landscape (news, films, popular culture), fake news and the rise of conspiracy theories, the website EU versus Disinformation is a great resource. They zoom-in on political questions regarding data and media, especially when it comes to disinformation campaigns from Russia that are affecting the European Union. Also recommended: this New York Times article on coronavirus conspiracy theories, and the role conspiracy theories play in our current global media ecosystem. 

    Western Esotericism 

    The Occult: a term that includes a wide variety of academic inquiries into spiritualism, questions about humanity and its origins, philosophy, the natural sciences, and a wide variety of esoteric traditions. Occultism is a study at the intersections between science and religion, and has been around for centuries. It includes texts from some of the world's most influential thinkers. Interested in esotericism and the study of the occult? Check out Dr. Wouter Hanengraaff's introduction to the Infinite Fire Webinar Series at the celebrated Ritman Library. In this video interview (in Dutch with English subtitles), the library's founder Joost R. Ritman introduces us to the topics, movements, and objects that his family spent years gathering. Questions of esotericism aren't just about reading ancient textts: listen to this 30 minute concert of early music by hermetic philosopher and mucision Robert Fludd.  

    Would you like to digitally enter the famous Ritman Library? They now offer a virtual tour, through which you can also take a look at their current exhibition on Jacob Böhme! 

  • Contact

    Summer School Online is brought to you by the Summer Programmes Office at the Graduate School of Social Sciences. If you have inquiries about one of our programmes, you can get in touch by mailing