Admission requirements1. Academic degree at bachelor level in human rights, international relations, peace and conflict studies or related field. Examples of relevant related fields include political science, anthropology, sociology, law, philosophy, history, European studies, gender studies, and IMER (International Migration and Ethnic Relations).
2.The equivalent of English course B in Swedish secondary school.
This programme equips you to work with issues like international aid, development, conflict prevention, foreign policy and human rights fulfilment.
This programme gives you a solid practical base concerning concepts like justice, peace, security, power, culture and democracy. You will learn how to analyse conflicts, international relations and human rights claims and violations. There are three specialisation tracks and you will write your thesis within your chosen track.
Track 1 Human Rights
This track gives you the tools for analyzing rights claims and violations: politically, legally and philosophically.
Track 2 International Relations
This track develops your skills in formulating, analysing and reflecting upon central questions in current international relations.
Track 3 Peace and Conflict Studies
This track focuses on conflict analysis, prevention, management and resolution, conflict transformation and reconciliation and reconstruction.
Potential employers include international agencies, non-governmental organizations, local and national administration agencies and the diplomatic service. This programme also prepares you for further study on advanced and doctoral levels.
What is Global Political Studies about?
Teaching methods include lectures, discussions, presentations, group work, thesis work and self-study of literature.
These are turbulent political times. International power bases are shifting. Political, economic and military threats merge and reform, presenting new political challenges. Examples like China and Russia prompt us to rethink the widely held belief that democratic reform will follow on the heels of economic progress. In these days of the “war on terror” it is also more and more difficult to know what a war is, who fights it, how it starts and how it can end. In the meantime, global inequality is increasing. Half of the world’s population lives in severe poverty, many of them in conflict-ridden regions and/or under failing governments. Problems of development – malnutrition, poverty, preventable diseases – can be solved by a global effort, so why does it not happen?
The one-year master's programme in Global Political Studies will help you make sense of these issues. It will give you a solid theoretical base concerning the meaning and role of concepts like justice, peace, security, power, culture and democracy.
What makes Global Political Studies unique?
The programme is composed of three different tracks, which allow you to specialise in one particular field. The track you choose is also the master's degree you will receive.
Human rights track
Human rights are a philosophical idea, a legal phenomenon and a political challenge. They have become a global terminology for moral claims. They aspire to universal validity yet need to be understood in their political context. The human rights track will equip you with tools for analysing rights claims and violations, politically, legally and philosophically. If you choose this track you receive a master's degree in human rights.
International relations track
The preconditions for international peace and security, as well as for human security are changing. Also, the study of international politics is becoming increasingly complex. The international relations track aims at further developing your skills in formulating, analysing and reflecting upon central questions in current international relations. If you choose this track you receive a master's degree in international relations.
Peace and conflict studies track
Organized violence needs to be managed and armed conflicts need to be resolved. The preconditions for war need to be refashioned so conflict and violence can be prevented. The peace and conflict studies track will enable you analyse and understand conflicts. The focus is on conflict analysis, prevention, management and resolution and reconciliation and reconstruction. If you choose this track you receive a master's degree in peace and conflict studies.
“At Malmö University you are pushed to think for yourself, as yourself, while at the same time accommodating the views of other people." - Blessing Onyinyechi Fubara
Blessing Onyinyechi Fubara has an MA in peace and conflict studies, and is now a PhD Student at the University of Humanistic Studies Utrecht, Netherlands.
What was it like studying at Malmö University?
"Malmö University contributed a great deal to who I am now. A lot of people at the university really inspired me. It was difficult during the first semester. The education system is quite different from the structure back home, and I wasn’t used to so much independence. But it’s good. It makes you believe you can do a lot of things yourself. Malmö University is very diverse. Being there is like travelling. My world view has grown and I feel more confident and determined."
"People study for different reasons. For me, it is a form of discovering, maybe because I am quite restless. Malmö University is kind of like me, restless in the sense that it feels like an active university, always moving forward and keeping the students on their toes. After my time at Malmö I’m not afraid of deadlines, reading, or analysing. At Malmö University you are pushed to think for yourself, as yourself, while at the same time accommodating the views of other people."
How come you wanted to go on and get a PhD?
"I love to work with people. I first got a diploma in social work in Nigeria, and then went on to study business administration at the University of Vienna, Austria. But it didn’t feel quite right so I started looking for other programmes and found the courses in peace and conflict studies at Malmö University. When I was accepted into the programme I was the happiest person on earth because I knew I was on the right path to doing what I really wanted."
"After my MA I was thinking about going back to Nigeria to work, but the security situation in the country wasn’t great at the time. It was also the same period the Arab spring was at its peak, so I started reflecting on both situations with many troubling questions running through my mind. I knew that I needed a higher platform than the level I was already on in order to find answers. I decided to contact universities to indicate my interest in doctoral programmes. I always had the idea of doing a PhD at the back of my mind, but I guess I didn’t know it would happen this soon."
Blessing is still developing her project, but one idea she is exploring is to do a comparative study on the role of local leaders in Indonesia and Nigeria in peace sustaining activities.
"I am from Nigeria, a very culturally and linguistically diverse country, where there are some 2000-3000 different local leaders representing people. The academic view here might be to question the power relations and structures, but there might be situations where it is productive to move away from that, and ask different questions, such as: Why haven’t leaders been active in peace sustaining activities? What are the local chiefs and religious leaders doing for peace? Religious leaders have potential to be peace custodians in society, but why haven’t they been active?"
"A particular worldview dominates the academic sphere. I want to think beyond that, as the pre-formulated ideas and ideals that dominate the academy can in themselves be normative. I am interested in combining modern peace and conflict studies with knowledge of specific cultures and traditions."
What career will I be prepared for?
After completing this programme you are well equipped to work with issues like international aid, development, conflict prevention, foreign policy, and human rights fulfillment. Potential employers are international agencies, non-governmental organisations, local and national administration agencies and the diplomatic service. The programme also prepares you for further study at advanced and doctoral levels.
Programme Code: SAGPE
- Department of Global Political Studies
- For students admitted
Other set versions
The programme was established 06 November 2008.
This programme syllabus (version 3) was approved 01 March 2012 by the Board of Studies at Faculty of Culture and Society.
The syllabus is valid from 03 September 2012.
Replacement for programme syllabus ratified 08 April 2010.
1. Academic degree at bachelor level in human rights, international relations, peace and conflict studies or related field. Examples of relevant related fields include political science, anthropology, sociology, law, philosophy, history, European studies, gender studies, and IMER (International Migration and Ethnic Relations).
2.The equivalent of English course B in Swedish secondary school.
Knowledge and understanding
On completion of the programme the student must
- demonstrate knowledge and understanding in global political studies, which includes a broad command of the field in general and deeper knowledge within that part of the field which is the student’s major field of study,
- demonstrate insight into current research and development work within global political studies, with deeper insight into that part of the field which is the student’s major field of study, and
- demonstrate methodological knowledge in global political studies, with deeper insight into that part of the field which is the student’s major field of study.
As specification of the deeper knowledge and understanding within the student’s major field of study, on completion of the programme
Skills and abilities
- a student whose major field of study is peace and conflict studies must demonstrate deeper knowledge in and understanding of conflict analysis, conflict resolution, and conflict prevention, as well as the historical and cultural context of organized violence.
- a student whose major field of study is international relations must demonstrate deeper knowledge in and understanding of key trends and developments within international relations, such as different forms of security, institutions and governance on global and regional levels, as well as key research debates within the field and of the ways in which these can be developed in relation to social progress, both nationally and internationally.
- a student whose major field of study is human rights must demonstrate deeper knowledge in and understanding of the structure of human rights theories and their motives, the political dimensions of the development and use of the human rights perspective, and international legal norms, including interpretation principles within international law and legal principles regarding human rights.
On completion of the programme the student must
Judgement and approach
- demonstrate an ability to integrate knowledge and to analyze, assess and deal with complex phenomena, issues and situations, even when limited information is available;
- demonstrate an ability to independently identify and formulate issues and to plan and, using appropriate methods, carry out advanced tasks within specified time limits;
- demonstrate an ability to clearly present and discuss their conclusions and the knowledge and arguments behind them, in dialogue with different groups, orally and in writing; and
- demonstrate the skill required to participate in research and development work or to work in other advanced contexts.
On completion of the programme the student must
- demonstrate an ability to make assessments in global political studies in general and particularly within their major field of study, taking into account relevant scientific, social and ethical aspects, and demonstrate an awareness of ethical aspects of research and development work;
- demonstrate insight into the potential and limitations of science, its role in society and people’s responsibility for how it is used; and
- demonstrate an ability to identify their need of further knowledge and to take responsibility for developing their knowledge.
Course list:see supplements
OrganisationThe one-year master programme in Global Political Studies offers specializations into three different major fields of study: human rights, international relations, and peace and conflict studies. The programme includes four modules, which cover joint orientation studies in global politics, theme studies in smaller groups, and in-depth studies in the student’s major field of study, including own research in the form of a thesis. Teaching consists of lectures, seminars, and individual supervision.
The students will organize and lead discussion meetings. All course modules include written assignments, in the form of papers or reports – to be completed individually or in groups – and oral assignments in the form of presentations and discussion sessions. Teaching and exercises into research methodology are integrated in all modules. There is a joint seminar on method and academic writing,which runs throughout the programme.
The first semester starts with the course Global Political Studies (15 credits). This course includes lectures that give an overview over the field global political studies, and seminars on method. In addition, the students will work in smaller seminar groups, completing examination assignments as the course progresses. The course concludes with a joint seminar, where students from different seminar groups present assignments. The next course is theme studies, which is an elective module (15 credits). A few courses will be offered among which the students make their choice. The courses on offer at each occasion are described separately. They will normally be related to ongoing research projects at the department. Examples of possible theme studies are Gender and Conflict, Global and Human Security, Sovereignty and Cosmopolitanism, and Diaspora. In the theme groups, students with different major fields of study, will work together. Examination of the theme study module is in the form of oral presentation assignments and a written report. There will be taught seminars as well as discussion meetings organized and led by the students themselves.The second semester starts with Individual specialization in the major field of study (15 credits).Ahead of this course, the students will have selected her or his major field of study and the research subject for their thesis work. The individual specialization will be shaped, in collaboration with a tutor,to fit the student’s needs in light of these choices, with the objective of making her or him well prepared for the thesis. Normally the student will conduct a research survey. In addition to individual studies, the students will organize and lead discussion meetings. There will also be taught seminars on method.The programme concludes with Thesis in the major field of study (15 credits), which is an individual research assignment. In addition to individual studies, writing, and supervision, there will be group seminars on method. In addition to submitting the thesis, the student will perform oral presentations of her or his research work as well as act as commentator on the research work of another student.
Degree Master of Arts / Science (60 credits).
Master (60 Credits) (Magisterexamen) in either Human Rights, International Relations, or Peace and Conflict Studies.
Other InformationThe department of Global Political Studies is a multi-disciplinary education and research environment in the Faculty of Culture and Society. Politics is interpreted broadly, to include formal politics and political organisation as well as politics understood as social and cultural processes and a form for human interaction. The global aspect of politics concerns issues and processes with a global reach, but also the relation between the global and the local, for example how the significance of local issues is affected by global processes.
The one-year master programme in Global Political Studies will make the student equipped to work with issues like international aid, development, conflict prevention, foreign policy, and human rights implementation on an international and national level. Potential employers are international agencies, non-governmental organizations, local and national administration agencies, and the diplomatic service. The programme also prepares the students for further studies on master and doctoral level.