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2 years
120 ECTS Credits
Online programme /course sessions


Non-EU applicants

Do you want to know why some countries have progressed to a high level of income without having strong resource endowments, whereas other countries have had propel periods of strong growth by excessively exploiting their resource base? And, why are some countries prone to kleptocratic and dictatorial rule - amazing riches to the few and poverty to the many? 

Are you interested in development issues and want to learn more about environmental, social, economic and political facilitators and obstacles to development? In the Global Development and Planning programme you will study population growth, over-exploitation and mismanagement of natural resources and environmental pollution.

This master’s programme is a blended programme, consistent of online learning and two compulsory physical gatherings (face-to-face sessions). Students from countries outside of the EU/EEA must apply for a student visa and stay at campus during the two years.

In the beginning of the first semester you will participate in a face-to-face session at UiA. Here you will spend two weeks with your fellow students, professors and tutors. You get an introduction to learning resources, computer technology and applied pedagogies. The second face-to-face session will take place in the second semester (four weeks in May/June) at our partner institution in Sri Lanka.

Both face-to-face sessions are mandatory in order to get your master‘s degree. The costs of the sessions are covered by the students. Norwegian students are eligible to support from Statens Lånekasse.

Co-operation is a fundamental idea for the programme. The pedagogy is learner focused, and will include group work, discussions and joint assignments. The online tuition, instruction and supervision takes place in virtual classrooms. The programme is full time, and we expect all students to participate actively, take responsibility for their own learning and take part in the development of an optimal learning environment.

What do you learn?

In the Global Development and Planning programme you will learn about theories and findings concerning development, and how you can make use of managerial tools to solve practical problems. Solutions to problems will be sought from a variety of disciplines, including economics and the functional areas of management, political science, sociology, anthropology, and geography. A wide variety of institutional contexts will be considered, including local and international private business, non-government organizations, central and local governments, international and national regulatory and donor institutions. In addition, you will be well skilled in cross cultural communication and collaboration.

Half of the third semester (15 ECTS) and the whole of the fourth semester (30 ECTS) will be fully devoted to the writing of a master’s thesis - building upon coursework and your personal experiences, and focusing on problems and issues of high personal interest and to the societies and institutions you represent. You will be encouraged to do fieldwork in a developing country in connection with your master's thesis. We consider this experience to be of particular value for research on environment and development issues.

Job opportunities

The majority of the students who have graduated from the Global Development and Planning programme are now working within research and teaching, in NGOs (in Norway or abroad), with Corporate Social Responsibility in the private sector, in public administration, with refugees and immigrants, in the UN system etc. The master programme may qualify for admittance to relevant doctoral programmes.

Course structure

Admission requirements

Bachelor’s degree with a major subject of at least 80 credits within Social Sciences with at least 20 credits at supplementary level. Applicants will need to have 10 ECTS within social science methodology. A weighed, average grade of C or better is required. Please see Specific requirements.

Please note that if you come from a country outside the EU/EEA and wish to study this master programme, you must apply for a residence permit/study permit to live in Norway during your studies. This applies although part of the programme is taught online.

Application period

  • Non-EU/non-EEA international applicants: 1 November to 1 December
  • EU/EEA-applicants, applicants with education from outside of the Nordic countries, and applicants with a renewable or permanent residence permit to Norway: 1 February to 1 March
  • Nordic citizens: 1 February to 15 April

Student exchange

Four weeks mandatory face to face meeting in Sri Lanka. Most students undertake field work for 6 weeks to 3 months.

Other than this, student exchange is not an option in this study programme.


Application deadline

1 December/1 March

Questions regarding admission

Questions about this programme?

Wish to preserve the resources

We are able to experience being colleagues with the lecturers, which makes learning easy. We sit together, talk and express ideas.

Alhassan Yakubu Alhassan

Student (MSc Global Development and Planning)

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