Why Study at IDS
The Institute of Development Studies (IDS) is a leading global institution for development research, teaching and learning, and impact and communications, based at the University of Sussex. The University of Sussex is currently ranked first in the world for development studies, reflecting the strong reputation and quality of research and course offerings across campus, including by IDS.
Postgraduate studies have been central to IDS for nearly 50 years, and we now offer seven specialised MAs and a PhD programme. IDS’ teaching and learning is shaped by our distinctive ‘engaged excellence’ approach. This means working in partnership with those at the heart of the change we wish to see, including policymakers, civil society, activists and practitioners, to produce and mobilise rigorous and operationally relevant research and evidence.
Our European Association of Development Research and Training Institutes (EADI) accredited courses are therefore designed to connect cutting-edge research with policy and practice, and IDS’ teaching and learning is embedded in our efforts to contribute to global transformations that will reduce inequalities, accelerate sustainability and build inclusive and secure societies.
Students and alumni are members of the IDS community, a truly global network that enriches the curriculum experience. Our courses seek to foster mutual learning and critical thinking and inspire innovative approaches to complex development challenges. Our course convenors and instructors are active researchers and aim to enhance the learning experience by bringing their applied knowledge and experiences of ‘the field’ into the classroom.
Learning at IDS combines lectures of 14–25 students with smaller seminars, tutorials and supervision. Students also benefit from a wide range of lunchtime talks and lectures and can develop their professional skills through workshops on critical reading and writing, multi-cultural team work, participatory methods, research communication and policy engagement, research techniques and presentation skills.
Students have access to the British Library for Development Studies (BLDS), Europe’s most comprehensive research collection on economic and social change in developing countries.