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Masters Degrees (Political Ecology)

We have 66 Masters Degrees (Political Ecology)

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The programme attracts applications from students with a variety of academic and experiential backgrounds. Read more
The programme attracts applications from students with a variety of academic and experiential backgrounds. We welcome applications from those who have worked in a broad field of development, but also from students without relevant work experience who can demonstrate a strong interest in, and understanding of, environment-development issues. A good first degree in a social science is preferred.

This programme takes a critical political ecology frame and examines environmental policy and its intersections with development from a social justice angle. It is taught and convened by leading political ecologists and offers a critical analysis of key issues including water, forestry, climate, fisheries, agricultural production, biodiversity, conflicts and energy supply.

The masters asks important questions including:

- How does the environment intersect with global poverty, wealth and questions of inequality?
- Can Carbon trading offer a solution to managing climate change?
- How does access to water intersect with dynamics of wealth and poverty?
- Is wildlife conservation implicated in social injustices?
- What role can and do environmental movements play in development?
- Is there a link between environmental change and violent conflict?
- What is the political ecology of forests?

The MSc programme’s emphasis on transferable analytical skills has been of great benefit to the many graduates who have returned to, or taken up, professional careers in development in international organisations, government agencies and non-government organisations. Students also benefit from the wide range of modules on offer, both within the Department and across the School, allowing them to create individualised interdisciplinary programmes.

The MSc Environment, Politics and Development has four components: two compulsory modules; one full-module option or two half-module options; and a dissertation of 10,000 words. Please see Postgraduate Modules (http://www.soas.ac.uk/development/programmes/pgcourses/) for details on core and optional modules taught within the Department.

Visit the website http://www.soas.ac.uk/development/programmes/mscenvironpoldev/

Structure

- Overview
There are four main components to this degree: three taught modules and a 10,000 word dissertation. All students take a core module, Political Ecology of Development. They then select one of four further core modules: Political Economy of Development; Theory, Policy and Practice of Development; Political Economy of Violence, Conflict and Development; or Law and Natural Resources. Through these modules students build their analytical skills and knowledge of the main issues and debates in Development Studies.

- Specialisation
Students also take optional modules (one full unit module or two half-unit modules), allowing them to specialise in particular areas of environment, politics and development and potentially to develop a dissertation in a related theme. By tying these to their individual dissertation topic, students design their degree to suit their own interests and career development goals.

Students should be aware that not all optional modules may run in a given year. Modules at other institutions are not part of the approved programme structure.

Programme Specification

Programme Specification 15/16 (pdf; 85kb) - http://www.soas.ac.uk/development/programmes/mscenvironpoldev/file101710.pdf

Materials

- SOAS Library
SOAS Library is one of the world's most important academic libraries for the study of Africa, Asia and the Middle East, attracting scholars from all over the world. The Library houses over 1.5 million volumes, together with significant archival holdings, special collections and a growing network of electronic resources.

Teaching & Learning

Modules are taught by a combination of methods, principally lectures, tutorial classes, seminars and supervised individual study projects.

The MSc programme consists of three taught modules (corresponding to three examination papers) and a dissertation.

- Lectures
Most modules involve a two hour lecture as a key component with linked tutorial classes.

- Seminars

At Masters level there is particular emphasis on seminar work. Students make full-scale presentations for each unit that they take, and are expected to write papers that often require significant independent work.

- Dissertation

A quarter of the work for the degree is given over to the writing of an adequately researched 10,000-word dissertation. Students are encouraged to take up topics which relate the study of a particular region to a body of theory.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/howtoapply/

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This Master's degree in politics considers the increasingly pressing political issues of population and demography. World population is growing fast. Read more
This Master's degree in politics considers the increasingly pressing political issues of population and demography. World population is growing fast: having trebled in approximately a century, the UN projects an increase from today's 7 billion to around 11 billion by the end of the twenty-first century. This unique programme explores where this growth is occurring and considers the environmental, economic, political and global implications for both developing and developed countries. We will consider policy debates and responses to population growth and stabilisation, as well as the effects of ageing populations on economies, welfare systems and defence and security. Under the guidance of expert academics, you will examine how ethnic, religious and national identities intersect with questions of resources and population around the world.

You will be introduced to a spectrum of methodological approaches, including quantitative techniques for analysing and projecting demographic change, discourse analysis of policy documents, and historical case studies of political debates and movements. There will be an opportunity to read some of the classic works on population, such as Adam Smith, Malthus, J. S. Mill and Marx, as well as to study more recent ideas, including demographic transition theory and the environmental concept of the Anthropocene. You will be invited to examine unique case studies using methodologies that include data analysis, critical theory (Marxism, genealogy and critical discourse analysis) and policy analysis.

The core modules explore current demographic and environmental change in the context of politics, economics and international relations and also consider the relationship between immigration, ageing and conflict. You will be equipped with the conceptual ideas, theoretical approaches and analytical research skills needed to study politics at postgraduate level. You will then go on to undertake the researching and writing of a dissertation on the subject that interests you most.

Our Department of Politics is a lively and distinguished centre of interdisciplinary research, with a strong reputation for the quality of our teaching. Some of the world’s most famous libraries are on our doorstep in Bloomsbury, central London, and you can walk down to Whitehall, where Parliament and the UK’s most influential and important think-tanks and centres of political research and analysis are located.

Our departmental building was once a key location for members of the Bloomsbury Group, so you could be studying in rooms that have hosted distinguished visitors, including T. S. Eliot, George Bernard Shaw and Maynard Keynes.

Why study this course at Birkbeck?

This Master's degree is distinctive, combining theoretical and critical perspectives on population and ecology with empirical approaches and real-world case studies.
The programme allows you to follow your own interests, with a wide choice of option modules, while developing your research skills and undertaking a dissertation in an area that interests you.
Our location in central London puts us at the heart of the UK’s political life and at the centre of academic London. You can walk down to Parliament and Whitehall, while Bloomsbury contains some of the world’s most famous libraries and centres of research.
You can take advantage of the rich research collections nearby, including Senate House Library, which is right next door to Birkbeck, the British Library, which is 5 minutes’ walk away, and the British Library of Political and Economic Science at the London School of Economics, which is walkable from Birkbeck.
Our Department of Politics was ranked 12th in the UK in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) results and is a world-renowned centre of original, influential research.
The department organises a lively programme of seminars and conferences and is home to affiliated research centres, such as the Centre for the Study of British Politics and Public Life, which run seminars, conferences and other events where some of the world's best scholars present their latest research.
Our academic staff are international authorities in their respective fields, publishing and delivering stimulating teaching in a wide range of political topics including civil society and the state, public policy, development, gender, international security and terrorism, and social and political theory, among others.
Birkbeck Library has a large politics collection, including the major specialist journals, and provides you with access to an extensive range of online materials.

Our research

Birkbeck is one of the world’s leading research-intensive institutions. Our cutting-edge scholarship informs public policy, achieves scientific advances, supports the economy, promotes culture and the arts, and makes a positive difference to society.

Birkbeck’s research excellence was confirmed in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, which placed Birkbeck 30th in the UK for research, with 73% of our research rated world-leading or internationally excellent.

In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), Politics at Birkbeck was ranked 17th in the UK.

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The world is experiencing important ecological and environmental challenges. To address them we need to expand and link scientific knowledge with practice, for example in the areas of environmental consultancy, policy implementation and development, and fundamental ecological and environmental research. Read more
The world is experiencing important ecological and environmental challenges. To address them we need to expand and link scientific knowledge with practice, for example in the areas of environmental consultancy, policy implementation and development, and fundamental ecological and environmental research.

The MSc in Applied Ecology and Environmental Management incorporates topics in ecology, environmental sciences and environmental management to explore the relationship between the natural world and society. You will explore, within a scientific and an ecological framework, the impact of human activities on the environment, and will obtain a thorough understanding of environmental management and sustainability issues, including policy and legislation, with the development of practical skills.

Visit the website: https://www.canterbury.ac.uk/study-here/courses/postgraduate/applied-ecology-and-environmental-management.aspx

Course detail

Our programme aims to develop and challenge you at a postgraduate level to develop a deeper and applied understanding of environmental biology and science, its relevance to the impact of human activities on environmental systems, as well as the mitigation of those impacts, and the regulatory, political and scientific parameters that frame practice and research in the environmental sciences. We have experienced and research active staff who will be able to convey their enthusiasm for their disciplines, and our facilities will allow you to carry out your studies and projects.

Through this MSc, you will have the opportunity to expand and link conceptual scientific knowledge while also applying it to the practice and application of research as it serves public and private stakeholders, for example in the areas of environmental consultancy, policy implementation and development, and fundamental research.

Suitability

The programme is suited for those interested in the applied aspects of ecology and environmental sciences for environmental management and consultancy, or for those interested in delivering user­defined integrative solutions via research, management and consultancy within the areas of animal behaviour, welfare and conservation, human and physical geography, crop protection, and applied ecology and environmental management.

Content

This MSc covers several main themes which make the core modules, including:

• Environmental Management and Sustainability
• Environmental Science
• Applied Ecology and Conservation
• Research Methods
• Applied Skills in Ecology, Environmental Management and Research
• Understanding Landscapes
• Agro-ecology
• Dissertation

Format

We use a variety of teaching methods that provide support and guidance within a participative learning environment, including:

• Interactive lectures (students and lecturers or speakers),
• Practical sessions (field and laboratory),
• Seminars and workshops,
• Virtual learning environments,
• Problem-based learning as individuals and groups,
• Tutorials with supervisors.

Assessment

This programme is assessed through coursework only, including essays, mock grant proposals and consultancy reports and portfolios consisting of desk-studies, critical reviews, reports, data presentation and analysis as well as literature reviews and other pieces of scientific writing.

What can I do next?

The programme has been developed to address the skills and knowledge gaps in ecological and environmental research and management. The modules in this programme are designed to allow students to learn the theoretical framework, practical skills and transferrable skills that are required for developing a career in ecological and environmental research with an applied focus, and in environmental assessment and consultancy. Employability is promoted and embedded across individual modules within the programme. Students will gain a broad range of skills to enhance employability.

How to apply

For information on how to apply, please follow this link: https://www.canterbury.ac.uk/study-here/how-to-apply/how-to-apply.aspx

Funding

-Masters Loans-

From 2016/17 government loans of up to £10,000 are available for postgraduate Masters study. The loans will be paid directly to students by the Student Loans Company and will be subject to both personal and course eligibility criteria.

For more information available here: https://www.canterbury.ac.uk/study-here/funding-your-degree/funding-your-postgraduate-degree.aspx

-2017/18 Entry Financial Support-

Information on alternative funding sources is available here: https://www.canterbury.ac.uk/study-here/funding-your-degree/2017-18-entry-financial-support.aspx

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Programme description. In this programme, leading academics encourage students to think across different disciplines to blend scientific, socioeconomic and policy perspectives for a stronger understanding of sustainability and how it can be achieved. Read more

Programme description

In this programme, leading academics encourage students to think across different disciplines to blend scientific, socioeconomic and policy perspectives for a stronger understanding of sustainability and how it can be achieved. This wider perspective is attractive to organisations which promote sustainable development or seek to reduce humanity’s effect on the environment.

Ensuring the environmental sustainability of society is one of the major challenges facing humanity in the 21st century. How can the needs of the world’s growing population be met without threatening the ecological processes that support human wellbeing?

How can the economy and energy systems be restructured to combat climate change? What policies foster sustainability? How can the necessary changes in the behaviour of organisations and individuals be promoted? This MSc programme explores these and related, topical questions.

This programme is affiliated with the University's Global Environment & Society Academy.

Programme structure

This programme consists of six taught courses, studied over two semesters. Students will also undertake a research project leading to a dissertation of up to 20,000 words.

Compulsory courses typically will be:

  • Principles of Environmental Sustainability
  • Case Studies in Sustainable Development
  • Dissertation

Option courses: In consultation with the Programme Director, you will choose from a range of option courses. We particularly recommend:

  • Atmospheric Quality and Global Change
  • Ecosystem Services 1: Ecosystem Dynamics and Functions
  • Foundations in Ecological Economics
  • Human Dimensions of Environmental Change and Sustainability
  • Integrated Resource Management
  • Project Appraisal
  • Marine Systems and Policies
  • Development: Principles and Practices
  • Understanding Environment and Development
  • Energy Policy and Politics
  • Environmental Impact Assessment
  • Forests and Environment
  • Global Environmental Politics
  • Participation in Policy and Planning
  • Political Ecology
  • Sustainability of Food Production
  • Waste Reduction and Recycling
  • Water Resource Management
  • Climate Change and Corporate Strategy

Courses are offered subject to timetabling and availability and are subject to change.

Learning outcomes

Students will be equipped to:

  • assess the sustainability of policies, programmes and projects at scales ranging from the local to the global
  • analyse environmental problems using knowledge from different disciplines, leading to well-founded and effective solutions
  • advocate sustainable development and engage in informed debate on current environmental controversies

Career opportunities

This programme prepares students for a wide range of roles within environmental consultancy, national and local government, non-profit organisations, education or research. The choice of option courses and dissertation projects can be tailored towards your chosen career path.

Student experience

Would you like to know what it’s really like to study at the School of GeoSciences?

Visit our student experience blog where you can find articles, advice, videos and ask current students your questions.



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Programme description. The MSc in Environment and Development (E&D) is an interdisciplinary programme exploring the inter-dependencies between pressing environmental concerns and development pressures. Read more

Programme description

The MSc in Environment and Development (E&D) is an interdisciplinary programme exploring the inter-dependencies between pressing environmental concerns and development pressures. It explores these themes, the disputes around it and practical issues from an informed theoretical perspective, with an abiding concern for social justice claims. Conventional academic approaches focus on development or the environment as separate categories, while this programme looks at socioeconomic development as a socio-ecological and politicoecological process.

In particular this E&D programme focuses on:

  • grounding students in an awareness of the contested development paradigm;
  • inculcating an awareness of economic, political and cultural links between environmental change and social inclusion.

Those issues will be studied at the local and national level, but also taking into account the global scale of environmental and development agendas. In many cases the root causes of inequality and poverty, both in the Global South and in the Global North, are driven by regional or global economics far beyond the borders of a particular country, village or region.

The programme will teach you to critically evaluate the multiple dimensions of the relationship between development and the environment. Teaching, fieldwork, group and practical exercises will use examples of relevance to Northern and Southern countries.

The breadth and depth of the School of GeoSciences enables students to explore a variety of environment and development issues relevant to the programme: e.g. biophysical dynamics, food insecurity, environmental governance, river basin management, cultural studies, climate change, multiple scarcities and inequalities, gender and development,etc. Students are challenged to cultivate research thinking that is cross-cutting and globally relevant, but also grounded in cases that focus on particular issues, places or systems, providing insights to effective solutions.

This programme is affiliated with the University's Global Development Academy.

Programme structure

This MSc consists of two semesters of taught courses. Students take two compulsory and four option courses, each a balance of lectures, seminars, workshops and visits, followed by an individual dissertation.

Compulsory courses typically will be:

  • Understanding Environment and Development
  • Development: Principles and Practices
  • Dissertation

Option courses:

In consultation with the Programme Director, you will choose from a range of option courses. We particularly recommend:

  • Applications in Ecological Economics
  • Atmospheric Quality and Global Change
  • Case Studies in Sustainable Development
  • Ecosystem Services 1: Ecosystem Dynamics and Functions
  • Energy & Society
  • Energy Policy and Politics
  • Environmental Impact Assessment
  • Forests and Environment
  • Foundations in Ecological Economics
  • Gender and Development
  • Global Environment and Society
  • Global Environmental Politics
  • Governing Mineral Extraction in Africa
  • Human Dimensions of Environmental Change and Sustainability
  • Integrated Resource Planning
  • International Political Economy
  • Interpreting Development: Institutions and Practices
  • Interrelationships in Food Systems
  • Land Use/Environmental Interactions
  • Marine Infrastructure and Environmental Change
  • Marine Systems and Policies
  • Participation in Policy and Planning
  • Political Ecology
  • Principles of Environmental Sustainability
  • Principles of Geographical Information Science
  • Research Design in Human Geography
  • Soil Protection and Management
  • South Asia: Roots of Poverty and Development
  • The International Politics of Money
  • Waste Reduction and Recycling
  • Water Resource Management

Courses are offered subject to timetabling and availability and are subject to change.

Career opportunities

This programme is suitable for students seeking roles within international and national development agencies, thinktanks, NGOs, environmental consultancies or the private sector, or those going on to PhD research.

Student experience

Would you like to know what it’s really like to study at the School of GeoSciences?

Visit our student experience blog where you can find articles, advice, videos and ask current students your questions.



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Programme description. This programme will give you a fundamental understanding of the issues affecting the Earth enabling you to play a vital role in devising and enacting strategies to protect and conserve the environment, both in Europe and beyond. Read more

Programme description

This programme will give you a fundamental understanding of the issues affecting the Earth enabling you to play a vital role in devising and enacting strategies to protect and conserve the environment, both in Europe and beyond.

Human activities are recognised as having an increasingly significant effect on the Earth’s biosphere. Our use of natural resources, deforestation, soil erosion, the release of potentially toxic compounds and pathogens, and the increase in greenhouse gases are all examples of pressures that have potentially serious consequences for humanity and other life on Earth.

On this programme you will learn about the issues that face the Earth and gain an in-depth understanding of natural resource management and the processes that give rise to environmental degradation and pollution problems.

It will allow you to play a vital role in planning and putting into action strategies to protect and conserve the environment.

This programme is run in collaboration with Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC).

This programme is affiliated with the University's Global Environment & Society Academy.

Programme structure

This programme involves two semesters of taught courses, which are a balance of lectures, seminars, workshops and visits, plus a research dissertation project of about 16,000 words.

Compulsory courses typically will be:

  • Atmospheric Quality and Global Change
  • Analysing the Environment
  • Land Use/Environmental Interactions
  • Analysing the Environment Study Tour
  • Dissertation

Option courses:

You will also choose four optional courses^. We particularly recommend the following:

  • Soil Protection and Management
  • Integrated Resource Management
  • Ecosystem Dynamics and Functions
  • Marine Systems and Policies
  • Archives: History, Geography, Politics
  • Carbon Capture and Transport
  • Culture, Ethics & Environment
  • Encountering Cities
  • Environmental Geochemistry
  • Foundations in Ecological Economics
  • Human Dimensions of Environmental Change and Sustainability
  • Principles of Environmental Sustainability
  • Principles of GIS
  • Project Appraisal
  • Understanding Environment and Development
  • Values and the Environment
  • Environmental Impact Assessment
  • Waste Reduction and Recycling
  • Sustainability of Food Production
  • Participation in Policy and Planning
  • Forests and Environment
  • Carbonate Sequence Stratigraphy
  • Climate Change and Corporate Strategy
  • Hyperspectral Remote Sensing
  • Integrated Resource Planning
  • Introduction to Environmental Modelling
  • Political Ecology
  • Ecosystem Values and Management
  • Soil Science Concepts and Application
  • Water Resource Management

Courses are offered subject to timetabling and availability and are subject to change.

Field trip

Part of this programme is a week-long study tour in spring. Past study tours have been held in France, Greece, Portugal, Israel and Morocco.

Learning outcomes

Students will:

  • develop a scientific understanding of some of the major processes which influence the quality of land, air and water resources
  • acquire knowledge of the most effective methods of environmental protection
  • develop expertise in the design and implementation of programmes of environmental protection
  • have the opportunity to study the integrated protection and management of particular ecosystems or resources

Career opportunities

Our graduates have a solid record in finding employment in the environmental sector while some choose to further their studies through a PhD.

There are also opportunities in consultancy positions and with environmental regulators, government and NGOs.

Student experience

Would you like to know what it’s really like to study at the School of GeoSciences?

Visit our student experience blog where you can find articles, advice, videos and ask current students your questions.



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Programme description. Ecological Economics focuses on how to make sustainability and environmental management work in practice by applying economic principles. Read more

Programme description

Ecological Economics focuses on how to make sustainability and environmental management work in practice by applying economic principles.

This programme is run in collaboration with Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC). Graduates with postgraduate training in this area are in greater demand than ever before in business, industry and government.

This programme is affiliated with the University's Global Environment & Society Academy.

Applicants who applied after 12 December 2016 receiving an offer of admission, either unconditional or conditional, may be required to pay a tuition fee deposit. Please see the fees and costs section for more information.

Programme structure

You will learn through lectures, group work, informal group discussion and individual study, as well as the spring study tour. After two semesters of taught courses, you will begin work on your individual dissertations. You will be able to choose from a wide selection of option courses to suit individual interests and career goals.

Compulsory courses typically will be:

  • Foundations in Ecological Economics
  • Applications in Ecological Economics
  • Dissertation

Option courses:

In consultation with the Programme Director, you will choose from a range of option courses^. We particularly recommend:

  • Human Dimensions of Environmental Change and Sustainability
  • Principles of Environmental Sustainability
  • Project Appraisal
  • Ecosystem Dynamics and Functions
  • Understanding Environment and Development
  • Marine Systems and Policies
  • Atmospheric Quality and Global Change
  • Culture, Ethics & Environment
  • Encountering Cities
  • Frameworks to Assess Food Security
  • Integrated Resource Management
  • International Development in a Changing World
  • Introduction To Spatial Analysis
  • Principles of GIS
  • Society and Development
  • Soil Protection and Management
  • Environmental Impact Assessment
  • Climate Change and Corporate Strategy
  • Participation in Policy and Planning
  • Waste Reduction and Recycling
  • Water Resource Management
  • Political Ecology
  • Case Studies in Sustainable Development
  • Management of Sustainable Development
  • Ecosystem Values and Management
  • Forests and Environment
  • Further Spatial Analysis
  • Integrated Resource Planning
  • Interrelationships in Food Systems
  • Introduction to Environmental Modelling
  • Sustainability of Food Production
  • Understanding the City

Courses are offered subject to timetabling and availability and are subject to change

Field trip

To experience and understand conflict between ecosystem conservation and human development needs at ground level, this programme typically includes a unique 7-10-day study tour, usually overseas and in the developing world (previous destinations have included South Africa, Kenya and Tanzania).

Career opportunities

Being able to identify ecological economic problems, and apply economic principles and methods to solve these problems is increasingly valued by employers.

Our graduates are working in a variety of sectors, including environmental consultancies; international and governmental agencies; NGOs; financial institutions; multinationals; environmental education and research.

Additionally around a quarter of our masters students go on to doctoral research programmes.

Student experience

Would you like to know what it’s really like to study at the School of GeoSciences?

Visit our student experience blog where you can find articles, advice, videos and ask current students your questions.



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All environmental issues derive from natural processes, but at the same time are social and political, and it is this unique interdisciplinary approach which drives this MSc. Read more
All environmental issues derive from natural processes, but at the same time are social and political, and it is this unique interdisciplinary approach which drives this MSc. It will appeal to natural resource specialists and agriculturalists, as well as those from a social science background who work or are interested in and wish to study development issues, sustainability and the environment.

The interaction between environment and development is studied through analysing policy processes at local, national and international levels, as played out by a large cast of actors: policy makers, politicians, business administrators, rural and urban resource users.

We use a wide range of critical and constructive skills, analytical techniques and contextual knowledge to advance our understanding of these processes. A main focus of the MSc is on the political ecology approach to understanding debates and policy processes underpinning responses to environmental and natural resource problems.

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The need for sustainable development is a global concern. This flexible Masters degree prepares you to address the challenges faced in safeguarding the planet’s ecosystems in a fast developing world. Read more

The need for sustainable development is a global concern. This flexible Masters degree prepares you to address the challenges faced in safeguarding the planet’s ecosystems in a fast developing world.

This programme is ideal if you want a career in the environmental field, in the private, public, or not-for-profit sectors. It can be taken as an MA or MSc depending on your dissertation topic.

You will be based within one of the largest groups of environmental scientists in the UK and will be taught by world-leading researchers from our three internationally-renowned partner organisations: Lancaster Environment Centre, Rothamsted Research and the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, which has a government laboratory at Lancaster. Their expertise spans a wide range of disciplines in the natural and social sciences including the sustainable use of resources, food security, energy, water and soil science, political ecology and environmental pollution.

You will complete six taught modules and a dissertation research project, with individual supervision from a research active expert. We offer great flexibility with over 40 modules to choose from, spanning the natural and social sciences from sustainable soil management and conservation biology to environmental law and globalisation. This enables you to construct a degree that fits your interests and career ambitions and to put your learning in a wider cultural context.

You will gain a solid foundation in the key theoretical issues around environment and development. You will apply this learning to real-world problems and gain the practical problem solving skills valued by employers. Hands-on experience in the laboratory is complemented by field work opportunities in the beautiful and topographically varied countryside around Lancaster and internationally. There are also opportunities to gain work experience through one of our many business and research partners.

Your dissertation forms a substantial part of your Masters degree and will enhance your practical and analytical skills and give you the opportunity to apply your learning to a rea- world challenge. Our many research projects and partners across the globe provide exciting fieldwork opportunities when you are choosing your dissertation subject.

Examples of previous dissertation topics are:

  • Quantifying Biological Control in Arable Crops
  • Amending DECC 2050 Pathways to Include Hydrogen for Energy Storage in Suitable Applications
  • Solar Parks to Double Crop Food and Energy from the Same Land?
  • The Role of Ecosystem Service Concepts in Reconnecting or Disconnecting People from Nature
  • Spatial Heterogeneity in the Size-Structure of the Zooplankton Community of a Eutrophic Lake
  • Waste Water Treatment in Vegetable Processing - New Technologies in Reducing Chemical Demands Used in Treating Portable Water
  • Spent Coffee Grounds as an Alternative Energy Feedstock for Biodiesel Production
  • Urban Poverty and Climate Change


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Programme description. This exciting MSc gives you the breadth and background to bridge disciplinary divides and tackle the environmental issues that face us all. Read more

Programme description

This exciting MSc gives you the breadth and background to bridge disciplinary divides and tackle the environmental issues that face us all.

This programme provides up-to-date knowledge of the contemporary issues and debates on the relationships between the environment, nature, culture and society.

This interdisciplinary programme draws on expertise from across the University, especially from geography, philosophy, theology, science, technology studies and development studies, providing a unique critical perspective.

You will develop the research skills and abilities to assess the importance and implications of geographical, philosophical and other theoretical debates which shape environmental policy and practice.

Our graduates are equipped to think critically, to generate new knowledge related to the environment, and to use this knowledge effectively to address urgent environmental challenges.

This programme is affiliated with the University's Global Environment & Society Academy.

Programme structure

This programme consists of six taught courses, including four option courses, studied over two semesters. In addition, students undertake an individual dissertation project.

Compulsory courses typically will be:

  • Values and the Environment
  • Political Ecology
  • Dissertation

Option courses:

In consultation with the Programme Director, you will choose from a range of option courses. We particularly recommend:

  • Archives: History, Geography, Politics
  • Culture, Ethics & Environment
  • Encountering Cities
  • Ethics in a Technological Society
  • Foundations in Ecological Economics
  • Foundations of the Bioeconomy
  • Global Environment: Key Issues
  • Research Design in Human Geography
  • Human Dimensions of Environmental Change and Sustainability
  • Understanding Environment and Development
  • Atmospheric Quality and Global Change
  • Distributed GIS
  • International Development in a Changing World
  • Key Concepts in Global Social Change
  • Soil Protection and Management
  • Principles of GIS
  • Principles of GIS for Archaeologists
  • Society and Development
  • Ecology, Ethics and Spirit
  • Marine Systems and Policies
  • Climate Change, Justice and Responsibility
  • Global Environmental Politics
  • Green Thoughts: Landscape, Environment and Literature
  • Methodological Debates in Human Geography
  • Urban Development
  • Biobusiness
  • Case Studies in Sustainable Development
  • Climate Change and Corporate Strategy
  • Environmental Impact Assessment
  • Forests and Environment
  • Global Environment and Society
  • ICT for Development
  • Interpreting Development: Institutions and Practices
  • Land Use/Environmental Interactions
  • Man and the Natural World in the Enlightenment
  • Management of Sustainable Development
  • Sustainability of Food Production

Courses are offered subject to timetabling and availability and are subject to change.

Career opportunities

Graduates have pursued careers in environmental policy, conservation, animal welfare, NGOs (environmental charities and development organisations), public consultation and PhD research.

Student experience

Would you like to know what it’s really like to study at the School of GeoSciences?

Visit our student experience blog where you can find articles, advice, videos and ask current students your questions.



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The MSc in Medical Anthropology offers a unique opportunity to engage with anthropological approaches to the study of health drawing on sociocultural, ecological and evolutionary perspectives. Read more

The MSc in Medical Anthropology offers a unique opportunity to engage with anthropological approaches to the study of health drawing on sociocultural, ecological and evolutionary perspectives. The course provides a strong grounding in ethnographic approaches to the study of health, the political ecology of health and the application of anthropology to contemporary public health concerns, as well as a diverse range of options in areas such as theories of the body and evolutionary medicine. Our unique biosocial approach to the anthropology of health is one of our key strengths and attracts a wide range of students, contributing to a stimulating and exciting learning environment. An emphasis on developing and applying research skills is also central to our degree. The course is taught by the academic researchers from our highly regarded Anthropology of Health Research Group http://www.durham.ac.uk/anthropology/research/health

Please see the website for further information on modules.

Course Learning and Teaching

The full-time course runs for a full year, from October to September. Full-time students attend classes between October and December (Michaelmas Term) and January and March (Epiphany), with further assessment in April and May (Easter Term), and then work, under the supervision of a specialist supervisor, to complete a dissertation by September. Core modules introduce the Anthropology of Global Health and Public Health Anthropology, and anthropological methods. Students can choose to focus on qualitative or quantitative methods or to train in both.

The programme is delivered through a mixture of interactive lectures, seminars, practical sessions and workshops, in addition to one-to-one dissertation supervision. Typically, lectures deliver key information on progressively more advanced themes and topics. Seminars provide an opportunity to reflect in more depth upon material delivered in lectures and gathered from independent study outside the programme’s formal contact hoursThey give students an opportunity to engage with academic issues at the cutting-edge of research in Anthropology, in a learning environment focused on discussion and debate of current issues.

Full-time students have on average 6-8 hours of formal teaching and learning contact per week, and are also expected to attend weekly departmental and Anthropology of Health Research Group research seminars, often given by prominent visiting speakers. Students also have the opportunity to present their work at the Department’s annual postgraduate conference, and to join activities with other universities, such as our annual advanced medical anthropology workshop with the University of Edinburgh. Outside timetabled contact hours, students are expected to devote significant amounts of time to reading, discussing and preparing for classes, assignments and project work.

Throughout the programme, all students meet fortnightly with the degree tutor, who provides academic support and guidance. Furthermore, all members of teaching staff have weekly office hours when they are available to meet with students on a ‘drop-in’ basis, or can be e-mailed to arrange a mutually agreeable time. Students work closely with leading academics to develop an original piece of research for their dissertation, and guidance on the dissertation is also provided by the dissertation leader. Before the academic year starts, we provide information on preparing for the course. On arrival we have induction sessions, including a field trip and social events, headed by the Director of Postgraduate Studies and the degree tutor for Medical Anthropology. Students also attend an introduction to our departmental research groups, including the Anthropology of Health Research Group.

Career Opportunities

Students with a postgraduate qualification in Anthropology pursue a diverse array of careers in areas such as conservation, tourism, public health, health research and management, captive primate care and zoological research management, local government research and management, education (secondary, further and higher), social care, social research, in addition to academia.



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The MSc in Environmental Governance trains students to grasp some of the key environmental challenges of our time by developing their skills to apply sophisticated, critical and interdisciplinary sustainability and environmental theories at multiple scales and in different geographical contexts. Read more
The MSc in Environmental Governance trains students to grasp some of the key environmental challenges of our time by developing their skills to apply sophisticated, critical and interdisciplinary sustainability and environmental theories at multiple scales and in different geographical contexts. As part of the programme, students have a unique opportunity to collaborate and engage with cutting-edge researchers and world leading experts on environmental governance, political ecology, Marxist political economy and urban sustainability.

The MSc in Environmental Governance is targeted at three audiences: future leaders interested in pursuing a career in environmental policy regulation and urban sustainable management; those wishing to develop further their academic career by pursuing a PhD; and environmental professionals wishing to deepen their knowledge.

Aims

-Interdisciplinary and sophisticated academic rigour: The course is highly interdisciplinary, exposing you to ideas and practices developed in a range of subject areas such as geography, environmental studies, politics, economics and development studies, rather than one alone. Our curriculum covers theories and interdisciplinary practices of environmental governance and offers you a comprehensive introduction to how human-use of the non-human world is organised at multiple scale and what the effects of this are.

-Inclusive and collaborative research environment: The degree offers collaboration with the internationally renowned Society-Environment Research Group (SERG) . This group involves more than ten researchers from the School of Environment, Education and Development , with distinguished records of theoretical, empirical and applied research in a range of geographical and environmental settings. This includes work on water and energy governance in Europe, Africa and South-East Asia; social, environmental and climate justice and equity in Central and Eastern Europe, smart cities and urban sustainability in the UK - to name but a few.

-Knowledge transfer and employability: We combine training in theory and critical thinking with more practical and applied elements. Our range of `real world' practitioners gives you the opportunity to liaise with external organisations on live policy problems and enhance your employability.

Teaching and learning

Part-time students complete the full-time programme over 24 months. There are NO evening or weekend course units available on the part-time programme, therefore if you are considering taking a programme on a part-time basis, you should discuss the requirements with the Programme Director first and also seek approval from your employer to have the relevant time off. Timetabling information is normally available from late August from the Programme Administrator and you will have the opportunity to discuss course unit choices during induction week with the Programme Director.

Career opportunities

The course responds to a growing need for social, economic and political experts in the environmental field, and our graduates are highly employable in what is an expanding sector. Graduates of this course possess theoretical knowledge, political understanding and practical research skills, preparing you for careers in either the public, private or voluntary environmental sectors, or for further research on environmental governance within a university or think-tank environment.

You will be equipped to work for organisations like the Environment Agency, the United Nations Environment Programme, the Soil Association, and the Department of Environment Food and Agriculture, among many others. Our students have been particularly successful in obtaining funded PhD places and gaining employment with private consultancies and international NGOs.

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The production, reproduction and transformation of urban space via socially, economically, and environmentally just methods presents a complex challenge for professionals. Read more
The production, reproduction and transformation of urban space via socially, economically, and environmentally just methods presents a complex challenge for professionals. This MSc combines cultural, social, economic, political and spatial analysis to recalibrate the urban design project, presenting a holistic response in which informality and marginality are central features.

Degree information

The programme will equip students with a political economy understanding of space; a comprehension of the needs, abilities, aspirations and forms of resistance of urban dwellers; the ability to respond with strategically co-ordinated proposals to leverage local abilities to meet local needs; and an ability to critically engage with the practice of urban design and architecture in developmental processes – particularly in the Global South.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of three core modules (90 credits), two optional modules (30 credits) and a development and planning report (60 credits).

Core modules
-Transforming Local Areas: Urban Design for Development
-Participatory Process: Building for Development
-The BUDD Studio: Building and Urban Design Practice

Optional modules
-Critical Urbanism Studio I. Learning from Informality: Case studies and alternatives
-Critical Urbanism Studio II: Investigative Design Strategies for Contested Spaces
-Disaster Risk Reduction in Cities
-Post Disaster Recovery: Policies, Practices and Alternatives
-Housing Policy, Programme and Project Alternatives
-Housing as Urbanism: Housing Policy and the Search for Scale
-Adapting Cities to Climate Change in the Global South
-The Political Ecology of Environmental Change
-Sustainable Infrastructure and Services in Development
-Urban Water and Sanitation, Planning and Politics
-Social Policy and Citizenship
-Gender in Policy and Planning
-The City and its Relations: Context, Institutions and Actors in Urban Development Planning
-Urban Development Policy, Planning and Management: Strategic Action in Theory and Practice
-Transport Equity and Urban Mobility
-Industrialisation and Infrastructure
-Food and the City
-Urban and Peri-Urban Agriculture: Knowledge Systems in the Global South
-NGOs and Social Transformation

Please note, the availability of some modules may be dependent on student numbers.

Dissertation/report
All MSc students submit a 10,000-word report on a topic related to the main themes of the programme. The topic can be chosen to enhance career development or for its inherent interest.

Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of weekly lectures, seminar presentations, group exercises and workshops. The BUDD studio includes a fieldwork project in an urban reality of the global south, developed in partnership with local organisations, networks of communities, slum dweller federations, universities and governments alike. Students are encouraged to explore different tools, concepts and ideas throughout the programme and test these during the field project. Assessment is through coursework, design work, written examinations and the 10,000-word report.

Careers

The programme enables graduates to work in NGOs and local government – facilitating community organisations and households to improve their living conditions. Graduate destinations range from UK-based organisations in the public, private and community sectors, to governmental, inter-governmental and non-governmental organisations, which operate in a development capacity in the South. Recent graduates have also been employed by international NGOs and aid and development agencies and architectural and design practices. Some graduates return to their home countries and engage in urban design and architecture practice, teaching, or research of urban development there; others have successfully sought employment away from their own countries.

Top career destinations for this degree:
-Architectural Assistant, Foster + Partners
-Architectural Designer, Thinking Development
-Research Assistant/PhD in Development Planning, UCL
-Urban Designer/Visual Designer, Nanjing Yangtze River Urban Architectural Design Co. Ltd
-Project Manager, Home Office

Why study this degree at UCL?

The UCL Bartlett is the UK's largest multidisciplinary faculty of the built environment, bringing together dozens of scientific and professional specialisms required to research, understand, design, construct and operate the buildings and urban environments of the future.

The Development Planning Unit is an international centre concerned with promoting sustainable forms of development, understanding rapid urbanisation and encouraging innovation in the policy, planning and management responses to the economic, social and environmental development of cities and regions, especially in Asia, Africa and Latin America. Its programmes are supported by international agencies as well as by national and provincial governments.

The Building and Urban Design in Development (BUDD) programme in particular reflects on the necessity of design practices to contribute to changing the mainstream paradigm of working with the urban poor, with communities and the city itself.

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This MSc equips students with the analytical, methodological and practical expertise needed to positively contribute to development in countries where they are actively involved. Read more
This MSc equips students with the analytical, methodological and practical expertise needed to positively contribute to development in countries where they are actively involved. Students acquire the tools necessary to respond to a diverse range of problems including productive capacity, intersectoral integration, economic and social diversification, and self-sufficiency.

Degree information

Students develop the ability to analyse the development process and to formulate appropriate policies for meeting development goals. The field trip, conducted in a developing country, provides the opportunity to study the problems encountered in development, and the cultural, administrative and institutional context in which decisions are made.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of four core modules (90 credits), optional modules (30 credits) and dissertation (60). A Postgraduate Diploma, four core modules (90 credits), optional modules (30 credits), full-time nine months, is offered. A Postgraduate Certificate, four optional modules (60 credits), full-time 15 weeks or flexible study over a period of up to two years, is offered.

Core modules - four core modules
-Contemporary Approaches to Development Management
-Development in Practice
-Critical Ideas of Development Conceptions and Realities
-Society and Market: Private Agency for Development

Recommended optional modules include:
-Adapting Cities to Climate Change in the Global South
-Cost Benefit Analysis: Theory and Practice
-Critical Urbanism Studio I - Learning from Informality: Case Studies and Alternatives
-Critical Urbanism Studio II - Investigative Design Strategies for Contested Spaces
-Disaster Risk Reduction in Cities
-Food and the City
-Gender in Policy and Planning
-Housing as urbanism: housing policy and the search for scale
-Housing policies: practical dimensions and alternative options
-Industrialisation and Infrastructure
-Land, Food and Agriculture
-Neo-Structuralism and the Developmental State
-Social Diversity, Inequality and Poverty
-Social Policy and Citizenship
-The City and Its Relations: Context, Institutions and Actors in Urban Development Planning
-The Political Ecology of Environmental Change
-Transport Equity and Urban Mobility
-Transforming Local Areas: Urban Design for Development
-Urbanisation and Development
-Or any other open MSc module in The Bartlett School of Planning.

Please note: not all optional modules listed above may be available.

Dissertation/report
All MSc students submit a 10,000-word paper on a topic related to the main themes of the programme. The topic is chosen by the student in dialogue with the Programme Director.

Teaching and learning
The programme consists of reading, essay writing and individual and group project work, in the context of lectures, seminars, workshops, case study analysis, and a field trip abroad. In recent years field trip destinations have included Uganda and Ethiopia. Student performance is assessed through coursework, unseen examinations and a final dissertation report.

Fieldwork
The overseas fieldwork trip is a practical research-based residential that helps draw the various elements of the degree together.
The DPU will cover the following costs of the field trip: return flights, visas, travel insurance, accommodation and fees, and costs of local experts and inputs. However, food, local travel and incidental expenses of a personal nature will not be covered by the DPU.

Careers

Graduates are engaged in a diversity of professional activities including local, regional and national government, consultancy firms, national and international NGOs, United Nations programmes and international aid agencies. A small proportion of graduates pursue advanced research degrees while several work as academics in leading universities or as independent consultants.

Top career destinations for this degree:
-Project Manager, London Borough of Camden
-Administration Officer, Pakistani Government
-Coordinator, Department of Development Administration and Planning
-Campaigning Researcher, Gaia Foundation
-Consultant, United Nations Development Program (UNDP)

Employability
The central objective of this programme is to equip participants with the analytical, methodological and practical expertise necessary to make a positive contribution to the development effort in countries with which they are engaged.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The Development Planning Unit (DPU) at UCL is an international centre concerned with promoting sustainable forms of development, understanding rapid urbanisation and encouraging innovation in the policy, planning and management of cities and regions, especially in Asia, Africa and Latin America. Its programmes are supported by international agencies and by national and provincial governments.

This MSc examines and analyses the theory and practice of development administration at international, national and regional levels to provide participants with an understanding of the processes generating social change and with the skills and abilities to respond.

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This programme examines development planning in the context of environmental concerns in urban areas of the Global South. It challenges mainstream approaches to development, focusing instead upon transformative action for environmental justice. Read more
This programme examines development planning in the context of environmental concerns in urban areas of the Global South. It challenges mainstream approaches to development, focusing instead upon transformative action for environmental justice. Many of our graduates go on to help shape future sustainable development agendas in local government, international agencies and civil society organisations.

Degree information

The focus of this degree is the complexity and variety of current environmental problems in urban regions, their causes and impacts, and the possibilities and limitations of environmental planning and management. Students learn how to respond to processes that generate social and environmental change, and how to develop strategies to steer urban environmental planning towards sustainability and environmental justice.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of three core modules (90 credits), one or two optional modules (30 credits), and a dissertation (60 credits). A Postgraduate Diploma, three core modules (90 credits), one or two optional modules (30 modules), full-time nine months, is offered.

Core modules
-The Political Ecology of Environmental Change
-Environment and Sustainable Development in Practice
-Urban Environmental Planning and Management in Development

Optional modules
-Adapting Cities to Climate Change in the Global South
-Disaster Risk Reduction in Cities
-NGOs and Social Transformation
-Food and the City
-Urban and Peri-Urban Agriculture: Knowledge Systems in the Global South
-Sustainable Infrastructure and Services in Development
-Urban Water and Sanitation, Planning and Policy
-Socially Sensitive Development in Practice
-Social Development and Poverty Reduction: From Theory to Practice
-Managing the City Economy
-Housing policy, programme and project alternatives
-The City and Its Relations
-Urban Development Policy, Planning and Management

Not all modules may be available.

Dissertation/report
All MSc students submit a 10,000-word dissertation on a topic related to the main themes of the programme. The topic can be chosen to enhance career development or for its inherent interest.

Teaching and learning
The programme comprises reading, essay writing, critical discussion and project work, facilitated through lectures, seminars, workshops, extensive fieldwork and discussions with practitioners covering theoretical and practical tasks and case study analysis. Assessment is through coursework, examinations, and the dissertation.

Careers

Most previous graduates of this programme are now engaged in professional activities, ranging from local and national government, consultancy firms and national and international NGOs, to United Nations programmes and international aid agencies the world over.

Examples of organisations where graduates are employed include:
-Public Sector: DEFRA and DfID (UK), Ministerio das Cidades (Brazil) and many other local government organisations
-International Agencies and NGOs: UNEP, UNDP, UN-Habitat, JICA, GIZ (former GTZ), InsightShare, Save the Children, and WWF
-Think tanks, academic and research organisations: IIEED, Stockholm Environment Institute, Resources for Development Center, WaterWise and the Arab Academy for Science, Technology & Maritime Transport
-Private companies: HappoldConsulting, EcoSecurities, Bloomberg New Energy Finance, Dialogue by Design, and BioRegionalQuintain.

Top career destinations for this degree:
-Ethical Trading Specialist, Tesco
-Research Analyst, WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature)
-Research Associate, Rethinking Cities Ltd.
-EngD Technologies for Sustainable Built Environments, University of Reading
-Graduate Project Officer, Leicester City Council and studying Certificate in Permaculture, Permaculture Association

Employability
Our programme equips students with several interdisciplinary and transferable skills including report writing, data collection and analysis, communication, research and project management skills and teamwork.

Our students network with diverse organisations in the UK and internationally, and in the field they may work directly with local public and private partners. Academic staff are involved in research, consultancy and development practice, influencing global debates on development such as UNFCCC negotiations, the Sustainable Development Goals and the UN Habitat III agenda. Students can meet alumni and other individuals and groups forming part of this network, which is concerned with issues of socially just and sustainable development in the Global South.

Why study this degree at UCL?

This programme offers an in-depth theoretical and practical understanding of socio-environmental change, equipping graduates with the skills required to face global challenges in urban regions while being sensitive to local contexts.

For the last 60 years the Development Planning Unit at UCL has championed forms of development planning that promote social justice in the context of rapid urbanisation in Asia, Africa and Latin America. The programme provides opportunities to interact with leading thinkers in development planning and students will join an international network of researchers and practitioners.

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