The Certificate in Political Risk Analysis prepares students to work in this highly interdisciplinary area, which requires a keen understanding of business practices and the political situation facing countries. Political risk analysis focuses on the effect that country characteristics and events have on sovereign risk (ability of a country to repay its debts), company security, supply chains, and the safety of individuals working or traveling in a country. Understanding this risk is part of helping companies better manage their investments, assets, and activities in foreign countries based on threats that a company might face.

The certificate demonstrates to companies that students have the requisite training to work in this area. The political risk analysis certificate was developed in conjunction with individuals working in this area and the Association of International Risk Intelligence Professionals. Feedback about the curriculum has been received from individuals working in the industry so that it provides the training that students need to be competitive in this area. Alumni are active in assisting students with advice on internships and careers.

Learning Outcomes

Students will be able to:

  • demonstrate knowledge of relevant economic and risk principles for an organization,
  • demonstrate knowledge of country and international system factors that influence an organization, and
  • analyze these system factors to show how they impact the risk for an organization.

The undergraduate Certificate in Political Risk Analysis requires a minimum of 18 s.h. of credit. Students must maintain a g.p.a. of at least 2.00 in work for the certificate. Certificate courses cannot be taken pass/nonpass. A maximum of 6 s.h. of transfer credit may be accepted toward certificate requirements, with the approval of the political risk analysis advisor.

The certificate may be earned by any student admitted to the University of Iowa who is not enrolled in a UI graduate or professional degree program. Undergraduate to Graduate (U2G) students may earn the certificate when the undergraduate classification is primary.

The Certificate in Political Risk Analysis requires the following coursework.

Core Courses

The course FIN:3400 has ECON:1100 Principles of Microeconomics and ECON:1200 Principles of Macroeconomics as prerequisite courses; the prerequisites do not count toward the certificate.

Financial Risk Principles

This course:
FIN:3400Principles of Risk Management and Insurance3

Quantitative Analysis

One of these:
POLI:3000Analyzing Political Data3
STAT:1020Elementary Statistics and Inference3
STAT:1030Statistics for Business4
STAT:2020Probability and Statistics for the Engineering and Physical Sciences3

Politics Foundation

One of these:
POLI:1400Introduction to Comparative Politics3
POLI:1500Introduction to International Relations3

Elective Courses

Students select three courses from the following.

Country and International Risk

POLI:2415Latin American Politics3
POLI:3405Authoritarian Politics3
POLI:3408Chinese Politics and Society3
POLI:3410Russian Foreign Policy3
POLI:3411Democracy: Global Trends and Struggles3
POLI:3418Governance in the Middle East3
POLI:3420Southeast Asia: Politics and Development3
POLI:3422Horn of Africa: Politics and Transnational Issues3
POLI:3423The Middle East: Policy and Diplomacy3
POLI:3426Outliers: Comparing Odd Countries3
POLI:3428Statecraft, Diplomacy, and World Order3
POLI:3450Problems in Comparative Politics3
POLI:3503Politics of Terrorism3
POLI:3505Civil Wars3
POLI:3506Consequences of War3
POLI:3509International Courts: The Intersection of Law and Politics3
POLI:3512International Conflict3
POLI:3514Regional Peace and Security3
POLI:3516The Politics of International Economics3
POLI:3518Water Wars: Conflict and Cooperation3
POLI:3522Ending Wars and Keeping Peace3
POLI:3550Problems of International Politics3

Experiential Learning Requirement

All students select one of the following after consultation with the political risk analysis advisor.

Study Abroad

Students register for study abroad credit (prefix ABRD)


POLI:3001Hawkeye Poll3
POLI:3127Legislative Policy Seminararr.
POLI:3530Diplomacy Labarr.
POLI:4701Undergraduate Research Tutorial3
URES:3992Undergraduate Research and Creative Projects0
URES:3993Undergraduate Research and Creative Projects1-4
URES:3994Undergraduate Research and Creative Projects1-4
URES:3995ICRU Research Fellow0


POLI:4900Government and Politics Internship1-3
Another approved internship course