MA Governance and Development

The Governance and Development course provides students with a theoretically informed understanding of debates on governance, enhancing their capacity to develop and implement policies in NGOs and public organisations. This MA aims to cover both the 'state-centric' and 'societal' aspects of governance, although the primary focus is on the functioning of political institutions in their societal context.

A Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) member, wearing orange.

Good governance emerged in the 1990s, as one of the most important and enduring new areas of policy and practice in development studies. Since then, a critical policy issue has been how to reform and rebuild states in the developing world, focusing on two key areas: the creation of more effective and legitimate legal, administrative, financial and policymaking institutions; and the promotion of social justice and empowerment for poor people by harnessing an active civil society.

The main objectives of the course are to enhance the ability of students to:

  • Critically assess competing theories of the role of the public sector and public finance in social and economic development
  • Understand the significance of current globalisation processes for international and national institutions
  • Develop policies for improving the effectiveness, accountability and legitimacy of governance in specific settings

Further information

"An amazing element of studying at IDS is the range of careers and countries represented amongst your fellow students, which gives the opportunity to share perspectives of development practice and culture both in and out of the classroom."

Ben Begbie-Clench, MA Governance and Development student 2010/11

A good honours degree in a social science or related discipline, and substantial professional work experience in a developing country or in development-related work. The minimum acceptable level of English language competence is grade 7 overall, and no less than 6.5 in each section of the IELTS test (or equivalent).

the opportunity to share perspectives of development practice and culture both in and out of the classroom

Course information

Fees: £13,750 (2014/15)
Start date: 17 September 2015
Based: University of Sussex, Brighton, UK
How to apply: Visit the University of Sussex website