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This unique Master's of Public Administration degree provides professionals working in international development with the practical tools and skills to collaborate on policy that responds to the need for balanced growth, social wellbeing and environmental protection in developing countries.

About this degree

Students are taught the conceptual frameworks, policy analysis tools and analytical methods to creatively develop innovative sustainable policy for developing countries. Students also study how development and innovation policies are implemented, evaluated and revised in policy cycles. A focus on leadership and the development of professional skills is emphasised throughout.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of four core modules (105 credits), one optional module (15 credits), an elective module (15 credits), and a major group project module (45 credits).

Core modules

Students undertake three core modules with students from sister MPA programmes, and a specialist module focusing on their degree topic.

  • Introduction to Science, Technology, Engineering and Public Policy
  • Analytical Methods for Policy
  • Development, Technology and Innovation Policy
  • Evidence, Institutions and Power

Optional modules

Students must select one compulsory option from the following STEaPP modules

  • Science, Technology and Engineering Advice in Practice
  • Risk Assessment and Governance
  • Communicating Science for Policy
  • Negotiation, Mediation and Diplomacy

Students will then also select one further 15-credit graduate module which is relevant to their degree of study. This module can be selected from any UCL department.

MPA Group Policy Project

In the group project, students work with an external client on a relevant policy challenge. With the support of STEaPP academic staff, the multidiscipinary student groups work together to produce an analysis that meets their clients' needs. The Group Project is usually around 12,000 words.

Teaching and learning

The programme combines innovative classroom teaching methods with unique scenario-based learning, enabling students to dynamically engage with real-world policy challenges. Scenarios are designed to help students consolidate knowledge and develop essential practical skills and their understanding of principles. During the programme, students acquire a comprehensive range of relevant skills.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Development, Technology and Innovation Policy MPA

Careers

Graduates with Development, Technology and Innovation Policy MPA degrees will typically work in government agencies, corporate regulatory affairs departments or within advocacy groups doing legislative, regulatory or policy analysis. The career path for this type of profession begins as research or policy assistant, moves through policy or research analyst, then to technical consultant or project director or other senior professional roles. Ambitious candidates can work towards top-level positions such as assistant secretary or executive director.

Employability

Through the MPA programme, students will:

  • gain a greater awareness of current issues and developments in innovation, development, science, technology and engineering
  • develop a greater awareness of the knowledge systems underpinning successful policy-making processes
  • learn how to communicate with scientists and engineers, policymakers and industry experts
  • develop the skills to mobilise development, technology and innovation policy, and science and engineering knowledge and expertise, to address the societal challenges they care about.

Why study this degree at UCL?

Developing countries face rapid technological change, increased global interdependencies, and problems such as climate change. This practical programme offers experiential learning for skills needed in innovative development policy-making.

Students undertake a week-long scenario activity on the policy-making process where they engage with external experts and UCL academics. Students go on to undertake a nine-month major project for a real-world client involved in development initiatives. Example policy problems include water or energy infrastructure, food, or telecoms.

Students will gain the opportunity to network with UCL STEaPP's broad range of international partners, expert staff and a diverse range of academics and professionals from across the department's MPA and doctoral programmes.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.

Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.


Visit the Development, Technology and Innovation Policy (MPA) page on the University College London website for more details!

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