Participation, Power and Social Change MA

Key information

Duration:
1 year full time, 2 years part time
Start date:
September 2017

Explore how people engage with each other and with decision-makers in pursuit of social justice. Designed for experienced practitioners, this MA combines coursework with work-based learning and action research.

You’ll be based at the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) and gain:

  • knowledge of different conceptual, theoretical and methodological approaches to participation
  • an understanding of how to apply these approaches to development and governance challenges
  • practical skills in participatory process and research
  • critical thinking, analysis and reflective practice abilities
  • personal development of values and attitudes useful in pursuing participatory approaches.

At IDS, our work is part of a global research collaboration. We work to identify and implement alternative approaches to social change. You learn to engage critically and constructively with change processes at various levels, using appropriate analysis, facilitation and research skills.

Why choose this course?

  • Ranked 1st in the world (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2017).
  • Rated as one of the top five best university-affiliated think tanks in the world (University of Pennsylvania: Global Go To Think-Tanks Report, 2015).
  • As part of the IDS community you are connected to a global network of over 360 partners, 3,000 alumni and hundreds of current and former staff.

Entry requirements

Degree requirements

An upper second-class (2.1) undergraduate honours degree or above.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please select your country from the list.

Argentina

Degree requirements

Licenciado/Titulo with a final mark of 7.5-8.5 depending on your university.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Australia

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with second-class upper division.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Azerbaijan

Degree requirements

Magistr or Specialist Diploma with a minimum average mark of at least 4 or 81%

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Bahrain

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with CGPA 3.0/4.0 (Grade B).

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Bangladesh

Degree requirements

Masters degree with CGPA of at least 3.0/4.0.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Brazil

Degree requirements

Bacharel, Licenciado or professional title with a final mark of at least 7.5 or 8 depending on your university.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Brunei

Degree requirements

Bachelors (Honours) degree with GPA 4.0/5.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Canada

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with CGPA 3.3/4.0 (grade B+).

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Chile

Degree requirements

Licenciado with a final mark of 5-5.5/7 depending on your university.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

China

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree from a leading university with overall mark of 75%-85% depending on your university.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Colombia

Degree requirements

Licenciado with ‘Acreditacion de alta calidad' and a GPA of 3.5.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Cyprus

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree or Ptychion with a final mark of at least 7.5.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Ecuador

Degree requirements

Licenciado with a final mark of at least 17/20.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Egypt

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree from a university with an overall grade of 75%

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

France

Degree requirements

Licence with mention bien or Maîtrise with final mark of at least 13.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Germany

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree or Magister Artium with a final mark of 2.4 or better.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Ghana

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree from a public university with second-class upper division.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Greece

Degree requirements

Ptychion from an AEI with a final mark of at least 7.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Hong Kong

Degree requirements

Bachelors (Honours) degree with second-class upper division.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

India

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree from a leading institution with overall mark of 55-70% depending on your university.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Indonesia

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with GPA 3.5/4.0.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Iran

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree (Licence or Karshenasi) with a final mark of at least 15.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Italy

Degree requirements

Diploma di Laurea with an overall mark of at least 105.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Japan

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with a minimum C/GPA of at least 3.0/4.0 or equivalent.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Jordan

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with CGPA of at least 3.0/4.0.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Kazakhstan

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with an overall mark of 4 or better (on a scale of 1-5)/GPA 3,33.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Kenya

Degree requirements

Bachelors (Honours) degree with second-class upper division.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Kuwait

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with CGPA of at least 3.0/4.0 or B+

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Lebanon

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with CGPA 3.5/4.0 or 14/20.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Malawi

Degree requirements

Masters degree, depending on your university.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Malaysia

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with CGPA of at least 3.3/4.0 or B+

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Mexico

Degree requirements

Licenciado with a final mark of at least 8.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Nepal

Degree requirements

Masters degree with overall mark of 80%

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Nigeria

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with second-class upper division or CGPA of at least 3.5/5.0.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Norway

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with an overall grade of B.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Oman

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with CGPA of at least 3.3/4.0.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Pakistan

Degree requirements

Four-year bachelors degree with overall grade of 65% or Masters with 60%

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Palestine

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with GPA of at least 3.5/4.0 or B+

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Paraguay

Degree requirements

Bachelors with a final mark of at least 7.5/10.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Peru

Degree requirements

Licenciado with a final mark of 14/20 depending on your university.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Philippines

Degree requirements

Masters degree with 'very good' overall, or equivalent depending on your university.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Qatar

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with an overall CPGA of at least 3 (on a scale of 4).

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Russia

Degree requirements

Magistr or Specialist Diploma with a minimum average mark of at least 4.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Saudi Arabia

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with a CGPA 3.5/5.0 or 3/4.0.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Singapore

Degree requirements

Bachelors (Honours) degree with second-class upper division or CAP 4.0.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

South Africa

Degree requirements

Bachelors (honours) degree with second-class division 1.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

South Korea

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree from a leading university with CGPA of at least 3.5/4.0 or B+

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Spain

Degree requirements

Licenciado with a final mark of at least 2/4.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Sri Lanka

Degree requirements

Bachelors Special degree with upper second honours.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Switzerland

Degree requirements

Licence or Diplôme with 5/6 or 8/10.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Taiwan

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with overall mark of 70%-85% depending on your university.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Thailand

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with CGPA of at least 3.0/4.0 or equivalent.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Turkey

Degree requirements

Lisans Diplomasi with CGPA of at least 3.0/4.0 or equivalent depending on your university.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

United Arab Emirates

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with CGPA of at least 3.0/4.0 or equivalent.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

USA

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree with CGPA 3.3-3.5/4.0 depending on your university.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Vietnam

Degree requirements

Bachelors degree (with a Graduate Thesis/research component) with CGPA of at least 3.3/4.0 or 7.5/10.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Zambia

Degree requirements

Masters degree with GPA of 2.0/2.5 or equivalent.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Zimbabwe

Degree requirements

Bachelors (Honours) degree with second-class upper division.

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

My country is not listed

If your country is not listed, you need to contact us and find out the qualification level you should have for this course. Contact us at pg.enquiries@sussex.ac.uk

Subject-specific requirements

Your qualification should be in the social sciences or a related subject. 

English language requirements

IELTS (Academic)

Higher level (7.0 overall, including at least 6.5 in each component). 

Check your IELTS qualification meets all of our entry requirements and find out more about IELTS

Alternative English language qualifications

Proficiency tests

Cambridge Advanced Certificate in English (CAE)

For tests taken before January 2015: grade B or above.

For tests taken after January 2015: 185 overall, including at least 176 in each skill

We would normally expect the CAE test to have been taken within two years before the start of your course.

You cannot combine scores from more than one sitting of the test. Find out more about Cambridge English: Advanced.

Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE)

For tests taken before January 2015: grade C or above.

For tests taken after January 2015: 185 overall, including at least 176 in each skill.

We would normally expect the CPE test to have been taken within two years before the start of your course.

You cannot combine scores from more than one sitting of the test. Find out more about Cambridge English: Proficiency.

Pearson (PTE Academic)

67 overall, including at least 62 in all four skills.

PTE (Academic) scores are valid for two years from the test date. Your score must be valid when you begin your Sussex course. You cannot combine scores from more than one sitting of the test. Find out more about Pearson (PTE Academic).

TOEFL (iBT)

95 overall, including at least 22 in Listening, 23 in Reading, 23 in Speaking, 24 in Writing.

TOEFL (iBT) scores are valid for two years from the test date. Your score must be valid when you begin your Sussex course. You cannot combine scores from more than one sitting of the test. Find out more about TOEFL (iBT).

The TOEFL Institution Code for the University of Sussex is 9166.

English language qualifications

AS/A-level (GCE)

Grade C or above in English Language.

Hong Kong Advanced Level Examination (HKALE)/ AS or A Level: grade C or above in Use of English.

French Baccalaureat

A score of 12 or above in English.

GCE O-level

Grade C or above in English.

Brunei/Cambridge GCE O-level in English: grades 1-6.

Singapore/Cambridge GCE O-level in English: grades 1-6.

GCSE or IGCSE

Grade C or above in English as a First Language.

Grade B or above in English as a Second Language.

German Abitur

A score of 12 or above in English.

Ghana Senior Secondary School Certificate

If awarded before 1993: grades 1-6 in English language.

If awarded between 1993 and 2005: grades A-D in English language

Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE)

Level 5, including at least 4 in each component in English Language.

Indian School Certificate (Standard XII)

The Indian School Certificate is accepted at the grades below when awarded by the following examination boards:

Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) – English Core only: 80%

Council for Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE) - English: 80%

International Baccalaureate Diploma (IB)

English A or English B at grade 5 or above.

Irish Leaving Certificate

Grade C (Honours) or above in English.

Malaysian Certificate of Education (SPM) 119/GCE O-level

If taken before the end of 2008: grades 1-5 in English Language.

If taken from 2009 onwards: grade C or above in English Language.

The qualification must be jointly awarded by the University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate (UCLES).

West African Senior School Certificate

Grades 1-6 in English language when awarded by the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) or the National Examinations Council (NECO).

English language support

If you don't meet the English language requirements for your degree, you may be able to take a pre-sessional course.

Visas and immigration

Find out how to apply for a student visa

Admissions information for applicants

How to apply

You apply to Sussex using our postgraduate application system

Personal statementYes
Work experienceYes

You must write a detailed, two-page personal statement. 

Find out how to write a personal statement 

You should have two years' development-related work experience.

If your qualifications aren’t listed or you have a question about entry requirements, email pg.enquiries@sussex.ac.uk

Course details

Full-time and part-time study

Choose to study this course full time or part time, to fit around your work and family life. Modules for the full-time course are listed below.

For details about the part-time course, contact us at teaching@ids.ac.uk

How will I study?

You’ll learn through core modules and options and a three month student-led Critical Enquiry into Practice project.

You’ll be assessed through:

  • essays
  • a research plan
  • presentations
  • an action research group project
  • a 15,000-word synthesis paper.

Placement

Between May and August, you take your Critical Enquiry into Practice placement to gain practical skills in preparation for your career.

You’re responsible for finding a host organisation and location for your placement.

Modules

Core modules

Core modules are taken by all students on the course. They give you a solid grounding in your chosen subject and prepare you to explore the topics that interest you most.

Options

Alongside your core modules, you can choose options to broaden your horizons and tailor your course to your interests.

Please note

If you’re receiving – or applying for – USA federal Direct Loan funds, you can’t undertake your placement/internship in the USA. Find out more about American Student Loans and Federal Student Aid 

Our experts

Course enquiries

+44 (0)1273 606261
teaching@ids.ac.uk

Find out about the Institute of Development Studies

Fees and scholarships

How much does it cost?

Fees

UK/EU students:
£8,000 per year
Channel Islands and Isle of Man students:
£8,000 per year
International students:
£15,100 per year

Note that your fees may be subject to an increase on an annual basis.

Living costs

Find out typical living costs for studying at Sussex

How can I fund my course?

Postgraduate Masters loans

You can borrow up to £10,280 to help with fees and living costs if your course starts on or after 1 August 2017. Loans are available from the Student Loans Company if you’re from the UK or if you’re an EU national studying for a Masters.

Find out more about Postgraduate Masters Loans

Scholarships

Our aim is to ensure that every student who wants to study with us is able to despite financial barriers, so that we continue to attract talented and unique individuals.

How Masters scholarships make studying more affordable

Working while you study

Our Careers and Employability Centre can help you find part-time work while you study. Find out more about career development and part-time work

Careers

IDS postgraduates have gone on to work in:

  • conservation, agriculture and food
  • finance and state ministries
  • UN agencies such as UNESCO
  • government departments such as DFID
  • NGOs including ActionAid.

They are all working to define and solve some of the most pressing global challenges. Some also go on to work in academic research.

Graduate destinations

100% of students from the Institute of Development Studies were in work or further study six months after graduating. Recent IDS students have gone on to jobs including:

  • project manager, European Women's Lobby
  • campaigner, Greenpeace
  • project assistant, International Organisation for Migration.

(EPI, Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education Survey 2015 for postgraduates)

Dissertation Participation, Power and Social Change

  • 45 credits
  • Summer Teaching, Year 1 credits

Following the submission date for the second semester coursework, you are required to undertake an individual project based on original research, which culminates in a 10,000-word dissertation. Most students will rely on secondary sources. Primary data collection (fieldwork) is not essential, although some students who are able may wish to conduct a short period of fieldwork during the summer. Those wishing to undertake primary fieldwork will have to take one of three methods courses offered in the second semester. You must identify a supervisor and submit a Certificate of Approval for your dissertation by the end of May. Supervisors will guide you on developing your argument, structuring your dissertation and additional readings.

Aid and Poverty: the Political Economy of International Development Assistance

  • 15 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 1 credits

International development assistance (aid) has apparently strong theoretical justification, and rich countries are increasing their aidflows to unprecedented levels in pursuit of poverty reduction. But the political economy of aid is becoming more polarised as global security concerns and global trade reform influence the purposes and practice of aid. Critics are many and anthropological, economic and political science analyses the dominant aid paradigm.

This course provides you with a historically-grounded assessment of international development assistance and its potential to reduce poverty through detailed treatment of the arguments for and against aid. There will be a strong emphasis on the new aid architecture as well as the special circumstances of 'fragile' states and the role of aid.

Climate Change and Development

  • 15 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 1 credits

This course provides you with an understanding of the science, politics and developmental implications of climate change and disasters, focusing on the perspectives of poor households, communities and developing countries. You will assess the overlaps between disasters, climate change and poverty, focusing on climate change adaptation and disaster risk-reduction approaches, critically analysing options to reduce negative effects and harness opportunities.  You will also examine the social, political and economic drivers of vulnerability, considering how policy processes at different scales influence risk management activities and local coping strategies.

Democracy and Public Policy

  • 30 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 1 credits

This module examines the theory and practice of democracy and its role in development. The first part discusses theories of democracy, from classical to modern, mapping their core concepts and establishing clear analytical relations between frameworks of democracy and their historical contexts. The second part relates these theoretical discussions to empirical concerns and case studies around the notion of development and social change, including the relationship between democracy and economic development, the impact of religion and culture, the relationship between formal and informal institutions, citizen participation and democracy promotion. The final session discusses the future of democracy and its dilemmas in contemporary times.

Development in Cities

  • 15 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 1 credits

You learn how development in cities is critical for the delivery of Sustainable Development Goals.

You examine how:

  • more than half of humanity lives in urban areas and poverty is urbanising
  • cities are places of economic growth and opportunity
  • urbanisation is accompanied by rising inequalities, security and safety concerns and challenges to sustainability.

You look at key concepts and challenges, and the necessity to understand cities as quantitatively and qualitatively different from, but closely connected to, the rural contexts for which much of the traditional development approaches have been devised.

You learn the key frameworks for understanding and learning about the unique challenges of development in cities.

Health and Development

  • 30 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 1 credits

Despite 20th-century medical and technological advances, health status is desperately low in many parts of the world and millions of people lack access to basic services. This course examines health systems in the face of the major developmental and organisational challenges of the 21st century. The course takes a fresh approach to the political economy of health care, examining health systems as 'knowledge economies' - ways of organising access to expert knowledge or expertise, embodied in both people and products - and focuses on how health systems could better benefit the poor.

Nutrition

  • 15 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 1 credits

This module is intended to equip you with an understanding of: the causes, extent and distribution of global undernutrition and its consequences; what works in terms of direct and indirect interventions to address undernutrition; and mechanisms designed to raise the political profile, commitment and leadership behind undernutrition reduction.

The module will be taught by a mixture of lectures and seminars and will be grouped under the following topics: 

  • Introduction to course: the nature of undernutrition - determinants and consequences
  • What works: immediate level interventions
  • What works: underlying indirect interventions
  • Addressing the basic causes - approaches to the politics and economics of undernutrition 
  • The enabling environment: transforming leadership, commitment and resources, the role of metrics, accountability mechanisms and real time surveillance

You will be encouraged to participate actively and reflect on your learning throughout the module through non-assessed groupwork. To assess individual progress a final assessment will be held at the end of the course.

Poverty, Violence and Conflict

  • 15 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 1 credits

This course will assess conflict shocks and examine their differences relative to other socio-economic shocks. This will draw on both existing literature on conflict and the history of conflict analysis within different social sciences. You will examine the difficulties or research in conflict areas, including measurement, ethical concerns, and security concerns, and assess where we stand in terms of empirical knowledge. You will critically review the latest research on micro-level analysis of conflict, going on to examine the impact of conflict shocks on households and individuals, drawing on insurance and risk theory, and assess the impact of conflict on education, health and poverty. You will then examine preventive policies including the potential role of social protection in preventing conflict and post-conflict situations. The course, finally, will turn to an assessment of the role of international institutions, NGO's and community-driven initiatives in the context of conflict-affected 'fragile' states.

Public Financial Management

  • 15 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 1 credits

States in developing countries frequently lack the resources, administrative capacity and legitimacy needed to reproduce themselves and pursue their goals and the goals of society. This course explores the behaviour of states through the lens of public finance. How do states manage international capital flows, including FDI, debt, and aid? What domestic sources are available without excessively burdening economic actors or coercing popular sectors? How do states prioritise and allocate their resources in ways that deepen democracy, manage macroeconomic balances, pursue efficiency, and improve distribution?


We will address these questions by considering the following four broad themes: capital flows (including FDI, debt, and aid); revenues (rents and tax); budgeting; and the political economy of public finance.

Sustainability and Policy Processes: Issues in Agriculture, Environment and Health

  • 30 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 1 credits

Delivered jointly with SPRU, this course provides you with an in-depth analysis of the relationship between knowledge, power and policy processes. Initially you will examine the historical and philosophical roots of key environmental, science and policy debates. A case study approach explores real-life examples from forestry, pastoral development, health service delivery, vaccines, occupational disease, agricultural biotechnology, water resources and biodiversity conservation. In exploring the cases, the focus is on the interrelationships between local contexts, community involvement and wider national and international policy processes influencing livelihood outcomes.

Return to top of page