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Course content

The MSc in Public Policy and Management seeks to provide an interdisciplinary training and education that will enable policy-makers, economists, planners, managers and researchers to be fully conversant with current issues of public policy and management, in an international development setting. In doing so the programme will provide participants with the conceptual and analytical tools needed to understand and critically review issues relevant to public policy and public sector reform. While the programme was conceived primarily for those already working in the public sector environment, it has evolved into a highly successful multidisciplinary programme that is appropriate to modern professionals, from a wide variety of backgrounds, who have an interest in issues of public policy.


By the end of the programme students will:
-Have an understanding of the different conceptual and theoretical perspectives applied to public policy and management, and public sector reform
-Have an understanding of the principles and practices underlying the implementation of public policy processes, and have acquired knowledge of `real world' examples of public policy/sector reform from leading experts
-Have an understanding of the role and importance of institutions for public policy and management
-Have developed skills in initial analysis of development economics, public policy, management and development studies, and in communicating their analysis in the form of clearly written and readable documents
-Have a good command of current theory, policy and practice in relation to some of the following specialist areas; public policy process and methods; public sector economics; development and economic policy; privatisation and public enterprise reform; public sector accounting and organisational change
-Have developed basic research skills through a supervised dissertation research project

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 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.

Coursework and assessment

The taught elements of the programme, carrying 120 credits overall is continuously assessed by a variety of methods (project based reports, essays), involving largely individual submissions, but also elements of group work.

Participants must also complete a 12,000-15,000 word dissertation on a topic of their choice approved by the Programme Directors. Students are encouraged to base their dissertations on topics of direct professional concern to themselves.

Career opportunities

The course is intended primarily for those with experience of the public sector and those involved in public policy formulation and implementation. The nature of the course also ensures that graduates are well equipped to pursue careers in the public sector or in public policy and development as researchers, advisers or consultants.

The Global Development Institute (GDI) has a large and diverse postgraduate population, including a large number of students from outside the UK (85% of our students are drawn from outside the UK, particularly from Africa, Asia and Western Europe, but also reaching out to Latin America, the Middle East, North America and the Pacific). Many of our alumni have gone on to prestigious careers in the public service or in the NGO/charitable and private sectors, as policy officers, managers, consultants or development practitioners - while others have pursued further academic study leading to a PhD and academic careers. Since its foundation, GDI has trained over 7000 individuals from 170 different countries.

Visit the International Development: Public Policy and Management - MSc page on the University of Manchester website for more details!





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