This degree provides you with a theoretical and practical understanding of debates on political change and how public authority is created and exercised. Based at IDS, you’ll build your critical and analytical skills, and improve your ability to develop and implement policies across state and non-state organisations.
The Institute of Development Studies (IDS) delivers world-class research, learning and teaching that transforms the knowledge, action and leadership needed for more equitable and sustainable development globally. IDS is ranked first in the world for development studies, in partnership with the University of Sussex.
We welcome applicants with a broad range of career trajectories. Successful applicants will have some practical experience in development alongside an interest in critical academic enquiry. The majority of MA Governance, Development and Public Policy students are experienced professionals, having worked in government, private sector, NGOs, bilateral and multilateral donor and lending agencies, as well as UN agencies. Our students bring a vast diversity of cultures, experience and perspectives – alumni from this course have come from over 70 countries and work or have worked in over 150 countries.
The academic year commences in September. Three terms run as follows: autumn term (September to December), spring term (January to March) and summer term (April to June).
A distinct feature of our MA is the focus on policy and practice.
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.
Optional modules, which build on these foundations, apply concepts and theories to a range of development issues, focusing on equipping students with the methodologies and tools to assess and critique different policy options. We draw upon case-studies, faculty, students, and research partners from Africa, East Asia, Europe, Latin America, North America, and South Asia, to enrich the curriculum of the MA.
This list gives you a flavour of our options, which are kept under review and may change, for example in response to student feedback or the latest research.
While it’s our aim for students to take their preferred combinations of options, this can’t be guaranteed and will be subject to timetabling. Options may be grouped and if so, students will be able to choose a set number of options from the selection available in any particular group.
Democracy and Public Policy (core)
We’ll make all reasonable efforts to provide you with the courses, services and facilities described in this prospectus. However, we may need to make changes due to significant disruption, for example in response to Covid-19.