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The Czech Way of Methodological Training in Political Science from an International Perspective


Methodologies and methods represent one of the most fundamental and
persistent topics of scientific debates, especially in western political science.
While Czech political science strives for deeper international integration,
such an effort may be limited by (among other things) the insufficient
methodological training of its scholars. Acknowledging this concern, the
article compares the levels of methodological education at elite western
universities and selected Czech universities. The resulting comparison
shows that Czech political science programs offer (i) less methodological
courses in general, (ii) but especially in the realm of quantitative
methodologies, and (iii) above all, they do not provide training in advanced
(qualitative as well as quantitative) methods at all. The long term effects
include the limited ability of Czech researchers to productively use works
utilizing more sophisticated methods, which may in turn negatively affect
their chances of publishing research in some of the prestigious
international journals. Under these adverse conditions researchers may
unwittingly eschew research questions whose solutions presume the
employment of an advanced method. Considering, however, on the one
hand, the deep rooted and self-reproducing historical embeddedness of the
Czech way of methodological education, and the financial weakness of
Czech universities on the other, one apprehends that there will not be a
significant improvement in this area in the middle-term horizon.


methodology, education, qualitative methods, quantitative methods, political science, Czech Republic

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Author Biography

Jan Kofroň

Jan Kofroň, born in 1984, he is an assistant professor at the Institute of Political Studies
of the Faculty of Social Sciences, Charles University in Prague. He focuses
on geopolitics and warfare in his research.

Ilona Kruntorádová

Ilona Kruntorádová, born in 1986, she is a PhD candidate at the Institute of Political Studies of the Faculty of Social Sciences, Charles University in Prague. In her work she
focuses on research of local politics, the autonomy of local governments
and the pushing through of municipal interests.