Development Studies


As the world’s balance shifts increasingly towards the South, the aspirations and struggles of its peoples will shape our collective futures and concerns. The Master in Development Studies is the Institute’s oldest interdisciplinary programme. It aims to equip students aspiring to careers in development with the theoretical, policy, and practical skills to tackle the great development challenges of our time. MDEV combines training in quantitative and qualitative methods with disciplinary courses in Anthropology/Sociology, Economics, History, and Law, and a unique interdisciplinary approach to three critical areas: Conflict and Peace-building; Development and Sustainability; and Human and Social Development.

Class-room instruction is complemented by independent research towards a dissertation. Applied research projects expose students to stakeholders beyond academia and develop skills to design and execute research projects in partnership with them. Specialized, interactive workshops with hands-on training are designed to enhance students’ professional skills and prepare them for careers in development. Internships for credit also allow students to develop works skills and experience. The programme is also open to mid-career professionals with suitable work experience.

As an MDEV student you will join a lively and diverse student body. One of the world’s most international cities, Geneva is reputedly the ‘soft power capital of the world’. As the European headquarters of the United Nations and home to numerous international organizations, NGOs, and a flourishing private sector, Geneva thrives on a lively cross-fertilization of ideals, experiences, and ideas from round the world. In this incomparable setting, our unique and exciting MDEV programmes offer rigorous yet holistic, professional, and practical training to advance your career dreams and equip you with the ability and skills to make a difference to our world.