6 points to consider before applying to an MA program in international development

Graduation Cap and Gown Cat Costume from I am a member of one of the largest development and humanitarian Facebook groups and one question that has been coming up several times , probably because it is that time of the year when members start thinking about their plans for the autumn, is about study advice for MA program in the field of development and humanitarian studies. Many of the queries a quite specific, a bit along the lines of “ I’m looking for a free, online, part-time MA in child rights & accountability in humanitarian emergencies in sub-Saharan Africa-ideally in French”. Given the size of the group and the crowd’s expertise this may not be an impossible question to ask, but as an academic I would like to take this opportunity and zoom out a bit for some general reflections on MA programs and what they can and very often cannot deliver. I had a great time studying Peace Studies at the University of Bradford in the early 2000s, I enjoyed teaching on t

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Hi all,  This is in many ways a #globaldev link review that captures the essence of why I started this project some years ago: Lots of different, personal reflections in many different formats, insights into very different 'development' organizations & introductions to important research of great colleagues! Enjoy! My quotes of the week: Frontex is turning into an information hub, (...) Its new powers on data processing and sharing can have a major impact on the rights of persons, beyond the protection of personal data. ( Biometrics: The new frontier of EU migration policy in Niger ) Are big people – the ‘heroes’ as they have been called, of ‘epic narratives’ – flattered and misled by the deference with which they are treated, and by the way their misbehaviours are tolerated because they are adulated as gurus? Do their charisma, ego, power and personal dominance combine to inflict on them awesome learning disabilities? Can this be researched and documented, and c

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Hi all, We just received a record number of 26 MA theses that need grading, I managed to publish a new book review & there's plenty #globaldev stuff to read as well Happy weekend! My quotes of the week The process of receiving, studying and responding to an RFP doesn’t do much to further a relationship. I get a general email, read a general document and write a response. There’s no space built in to that process for us to get to know one another. Instead, you are left making assumptions about me, and I about you – based on a single RFP. (Mary Cahalane) “The reason we have the triple threats of disconnection of people from society, mistrust of institutions, and the rising tide of populism is because we have structurally underinvested in [civil society],”(...) “We have let the local community pillar break down and wither.” (Andy Haldane, Chief Economist Bank of England) Enjoy! New from aidnography Humanitarian Wars? (book review) Brauman revisits those ‘forgotten

Humanitarian Wars? (book review)

It does not happen often, but I think a German word actually captures the essence of Rony Brauman’s book Humanitarian Wars? Lies and Brainwashing best: The word is Streitschrift and the translation polemic does not really capture the nuances of the genre well. In just over 100 pages and in the form of a conversation with RĂ©gis Meyran (and translated by Nina Friedman), Brauman provokes discussion, sometimes disagreement and provides always substantial intellectual food for thought.  In the eyes of Rony Brauman of MSF, wars are always triggered in the name of morality. Today’s ‘humanitarian’ interventions are little more than new crusades – and their justifications are based on lies. (…) Without being militantly non-interventionist, Brauman is extremely suspicious of the thirst for war displayed by many of today’s world leaders, the consequences of which are devastating (jacket cover). This captures the tone and scope of the book well-Brauman is always critical about justific