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Masters Degrees (Humanitarian Actions)

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You will examine the central challenges of the world we live in today from contemporary and historical perspectives. This innovative MA will provide a grounding in international relations theory while examining in depth issues of enduring international significance. Read more
You will examine the central challenges of the world we live in today from contemporary and historical perspectives. This innovative MA will provide a grounding in international relations theory while examining in depth issues of enduring international significance.

•Hear from experts and practitioners in the field of International Relations
•If you are interested in doing an internship we can help arrange one with an appropriate organisation
•Erasmus funding for European student internships
•Participate in field trips to visit and understand the complex workings of institutions and think tanks in the UK and Europe
•Students will be involved in organising and participating in national conference/symposia
•Join a highly motivated postgraduate research community


The MA International Relations is designed to help you examine the central challenges of the world we live in today in both contemporary and historical perspectives.

​The programme takes an expanded definition of what is International Relations and covers a range of subjects from economics, politics, law and culture to examining the actions of international organisations, nation-states and non-state actors.

It provides you with an essential grounding in international relations theory and also provides a range of specialist modules which examine in depth issues of enduring international significance: conflict, US foreign policy, state-building in the colonial and post-colonial world, and the role of humanitarian actions by state and non-state actors.

​In addition to the cross-faculty taught aspects of the MA, this programme recognises the importance of networking by obtaining employment in a related field. This is why we will provide opportunities of an internship programme and will hold and attend regular events and workshops with experts.

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Building on its 20 years of expertise developing teaching and learning programmes, CENDEP (Centre for Development and Emergency Practice) at Oxford Brookes University offers a three module entirely online Postgraduate Certificate designed specifically for practitioners and field workers. Read more
Building on its 20 years of expertise developing teaching and learning programmes, CENDEP (Centre for Development and Emergency Practice) at Oxford Brookes University offers a three module entirely online Postgraduate Certificate designed specifically for practitioners and field workers. This programme tackles the newest and most innovative developments regarding cross-cutting issues such as conflict sensitivity and transformation, culture sensitivity, and participation or urban crises and resilience.

It uses multiculturalism as a teaching tool and as a means of creating more practical and theoretical knowledge about humanitarian action. Creating a space for a true dialogue between different understandings is undoubtedly one of the main challenges of the humanitarian community and of higher education institutions teaching Humanitarianism.

The course is taking the workplace as the main learning environment and allows students from all over the world, involved in humanitarian actions, to engage with a global community of learners and tutors in discussion, conceptualisation and practice based exercises about humanitarian issues in conflict or turbulent environments.

The Student Experience

The weekly student workload is evaluated at around 15 hours which includes reading material, working on the different assignments and communicating with peers and tutors; assessing and applying new learning directly at the field level and reflecting on their application in practice (this does not constitute an extra workload but another way of learning by doing). Tutors bring a large range of different experiences coming from different work-based, geographical and institutional environments within the NGO sector, academia and civil services.

Every week new material is loaded onto Brookes’ Virtual Learning Environment. This material includes readings, audio or video materials and themes for discussions. Assignments are given two weeks before the beginning of each module in order to allow learners to organise themselves accordingly to be able to meet deadlines. Tutors are available to guide learners either as a group or individually. The building of a real community on the web is a key element of the success of a strictly online programme. At the start of the programme, time is spent getting to know each other, knowing and sharing objectives, expectations and experience.

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All countries face a wide range of hazards, both natural and man-made, that have the potential to result in catastrophic damage. Despite actions taken by local emergency management professionals, international trends show that the economic and social impact of disaster has increased around the world. Read more
All countries face a wide range of hazards, both natural and man-made, that have the potential to result in catastrophic damage. Despite actions taken by local emergency management professionals, international trends show that the economic and social impact of disaster has increased around the world. This is especially true in the developing world, where large-scale disasters can result in enormous loss of life as well as considerable economic damage.

The MSc in International Disaster Management is designed for participants who want to increase both theoretical and practical management skills in enhancing resilience to disasters through prevention, preparedness, response and recovery from natural and man-made disaster events. Within the HCRI, this will take place through multidisciplinary study focusing on the critical analysis of current trends in global policies, particularly those related to international disaster risk reduction, sustainable development, climate change adaptation and humanitarian action tools commonly used by disaster risk reduction professionals. To this end, the core curriculum brings together the realms of disaster risk reduction, sustainable development, climate change adaptation and humanitarian action. The interdisciplinary team of researchers at the HCRI will also support academic study through practical applications of theory to disaster resilience, prevention, mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery.

In this way, the MSc in International Disaster Management is unique as it incorporates a wide variety of available course units from history, politics, development studies, the arts and medicine. This results in a course that is suitable as a way to development initial skills in disaster risk reduction or support continuing education for disaster risk reduction professionals.

Aims

On completion of the course, you should be able to show a critical understanding of:
1. Key issues and debates related to the theory and practices of disaster risk reduction. Students will show familiarity with different theoretical approaches, practical problems and an appreciation of the diversity of polices at international and national levels, including the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, Sustainable Development Goals, 21 st Conference of Parties on Climate Change (COP21) and the outcomes of the World Humanitarian Summit.
2. The range of environmental, health and social science topics which influence disaster risk reduction and management (including political, historical, anthropological understandings). Students will become familiar with the methodological and normative underpinnings of these disciplines.
3. The analytical and policy literature concerning the related issues of disaster risk reduction including environmental/geological studies, emergency management structures and institutions, the role and perspectives of the state, multilateral and bilateral agencies, international and domestic NGO's and other civil institutions.
4. An understanding of common approaches to disaster risk reduction (i.e. risk matrices, disaster typologies), including an awareness of the problems and critiques associated with disaster prevention, mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery in both industrialized and developing countries.
5. The development of a range of academic and professional/transferable skills through both independent and group-based work.
6. A detailed understanding of a specific conceptual and/or policy-related area of disaster risk reduction along with implications and limitations of research findings on this subject, and of how to produce an original piece of academic research. Delivered via a dissertation.

Special features

HCRI also offers bespoke training in International Disaster Management and Continuing Professional Development courses.

HCRI at The University of Manchester is inspired by the need to conduct rigorous research and to support postgraduate training on the impact and outcomes of contemporary and historical crises. Directed by Dr Rony Brauman (former President of MSF France, Associate Professor at L'Institut d'Études Politiques, Paris, and Director of Research at the MSF Foundation, Paris), HCRI is widely recognised as being a leading international research institute focusing on the study of humanitarianism, conflict response and peacebuilding.

Our work is driven by a desire to inform and support policy and decision makers, to optimise joint working between partner organisations, and to foster increased understanding and debate within the field. Bringing together the disciplines of medicine and the humanities (including international relations and political science) to achieve these goals, HCRI aims to facilitate improvements in crisis response on a global scale whilst providing a centre of excellence for all concerned with emergencies, conflicts and peace. In offering a range of postgraduate courses we embrace this opportunity to develop a scholarly and professional agenda for humanitarians and peacebuilders around the world.

Teaching and learning

Delivery of the course will be done through face-to-face teaching at the University of Manchester. This will be supported by streamed lectures, discussion boards and other e-learning elements.

Coursework and assessment

Graduation requirements will be the completion of 180 credits. A total of 120 credits of module coursework will be required for students to move on to dissertation writing. A passing dissertation will lead to the final 60 credits needed for MA completion.

Career opportunities

Students completing this programme may consider a wide range of career choices, including careers with:
-Civil Service (working within various government ministries, including the foreign office, international development office and local resilience forums)
-International Institutions (such as the UN Peacebuilding Commission, Department of Peacekeeping Operations and regional bodies such as the European Union, African Union, Organization of American States)
-NGO's (local and international) working on peacebuilding initiatives
-Academia/Research Institutes/Think-Tanks

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