International Public Law

40.04.01In english and russian

Level of education Master

Type of instruction Full-time

Duration 2 years

Main academic courses
  • Law of Treaties
  • Liability in International Law
  • International Maritime Law
  • International Humanitarian Law
  • International Trade Law
  • International Protection of Human Rights 
  • Theory and History of International Law
  • International Adjudication (in English)
  • The Law of International Organisations
  • Interaction of International and National Law 
  • International Protection of Foreign Investments
  • International Space Law and Telecommunications Law
  • International Law in Action: Master Classes
Our advantages
  • The master's programme ‘International Public Law’ is a classical master's programme in international public law. It combines elements of an academic and practice-oriented master's programme. Globally, it consists of the following three units.
  • In the first unit ‘General International Law’, students are deeply immersed in the general theory and specific theoretical issues in international public law. In addition to the general introductory course, the programme includes specific courses in: responsibility in international law; the law of treaties; and the features of international organisations in comparison with states as primary and main subjects of international law.
  • The second unit ‘Special Part’ makes it possible to: apply and develop the designed methodology; and analyse the features of specific areas of regulation through special courses. These include: International Protection of Human Rights; International Humanitarian Law; International Maritime Law; International Trade Law; and a number of other courses. An important feature of this unit is that the courses are taught by lecturers who practise international law. Moreover, students have an opportunity to take part in seminars and other additional academic events organised by teachers of the programme.
  • The third unit of the programme contains the so-called ‘basic’ disciplines: Issues in the Philosophy of Science and Methodology of Legal Research. They are aimed at acquiring skills and abilities important for the development of an academic career. On the contrary, internship is designed to help students learn the fundamentals of practical activities in the organisations and bodies that apply international law.
  • Thus, graduates of the programme: know the methodology of research and the functioning of international law; have a good command of the features of regulation in specific areas; taking into account the methodology, are able to predict the development and see the mechanisms and methods for solving challenging issues in application and interpretation of international law in any areas; are able to prepare scientific research, and expert and advisory opinions on international law issues, and put these into practice; and are ready to advise on compliance with international law or represent the position of the disputing party in international/national courts and monitoring bodies for the protection of human rights.
International relations

During the training, master’s students have an opportunity to use the extensive international relations of St Petersburg University.

Among the University’s partners are:

  • Universität Hamburg (Germany)
  • Freie Universität Berlin (Germany)
  • Vilnius University (Lithuania)
  • Charles University (the Czech Republic)
  • The University of Belgrade (Serbia)
  • The Academy of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Belarus
  • Peking University (China)
  • Hanoi Law University (Vietnam), and others

There is an opportunity to have internships in foreign universities under the interstate agreements of the Russian Federation. In particular, there is an agreement with the Ministry of Education of the People’s Republic of China on student exchange programmes.

Main areas of research
  • Theory and history of international law
  • Space law
  • International economic law
  • Protection of human rights in international courts
  • Biomedicine and protection of human rights
  • International humanitarian law
  • International maritime law
  • Law of treaties
  • Interaction of international and national law
Career opportunities


  • academic career in Russian and foreign universities
  • courts, including the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation
  • federal agencies of the Russian Federation
  • state-run corporations
  • Russian and international consulting companies
  • international bodies and organisations

Educational qualifications make it possible for graduates to be engaged in the full range of legal activities. Graduates of the programme who are prone to research activities continue their education in doctoral programmes and prepare their dissertation research. Graduates are ready for practical activities in: legislative, executive, and judicial authorities; and public defender’s office and prosecutor’s office. They can hold positions in preliminary investigation bodies of any jurisdiction and can provide legal services to enterprises, institutions, and organisations.

Organisations where our graduates work

Graduates are in demand in all spheres and areas of professional legal activities. They work in: government agencies in positions related to issues of international cooperation between Russia and other countries; foreign institutions of federal ministries and departments of Russia; Russian non-governmental organisations as lawyers, whose functions include a wide range of international law issues; international intergovernmental organisations (representative offices of Russia in international intergovernmental organisations); and non-governmental organisations.

Among other areas of our graduates’ activities are:

  • diplomatic and consular service, trade missions of the Russian Federation abroad
  • representation in the European Court of Human Rights and other supervising agencies bodies and committees
  • court representation in disputes involving foreigners
  • a wide range of government agencies
  • administration of justice