Global Cooperation and Security MSc

We live in an age where there is an urgent need for cooperative responses to address major global security challenges, as well as to transform intractable interstate and intrastate conflicts.

This degree responds to that need by providing students with an advanced interdisciplinary training in the theory and practice of global cooperation and conflict transformation. Students will develop the knowledge and skills needed to investigate how one might identify and overcome obstacles to cooperation. 

More specifically, the course considers how far actors with different values, cultures, histories and security conceptions can co-exist peacefully in an anarchic international system.

Core modules

The degree is principally taught through three core modules involving an important mix of academic and practitioner input to immerse students in the politics of cooperation and conflict transformation:

Theories of Global Cooperation taught by Professor Nicholas Wheeler introduces students to a range of theoretical approaches drawing on International Relations scholarship and other cognate disciplines, to investigate both the obstacles to, and possibilities for, ameliorating intractable conflicts. These insights are then applied to an analysis of cooperation in multilateral security regimes to assess the potential for meeting today’s urgent global security challenges.

Global Cooperation in Practice examines the practical application of the theories discussed in the first module through the prism of practitioner experience. This new module will be coordinated by Professor Mark Webber and will take the form of a series of guest lectures and breakout sessions delivered by practitioners with extensive experience of global cooperation.

Trust, Diplomacy and Conflict Transformation is a unique five day training programme included as a core module for the MSc in Global Cooperation and Security. It provides students with the opportunity to learn about different approaches to the developing field of trust-building in International Relations and to better understand how practitioners wrestle with the dilemmas of trust/mistrust in practical negotiating settings. This programme involves lectures delivered by internationally renowned academics and practitioners who have a wealth of experience of mediation and negotiation in deeply adversarial settings. We also equip participants with core mediation and communication skills through two days of intensive training in conjunction with the Birmingham-based NGO Responding to Conflict, a professional organisation actively engaged in conflict resolution efforts.

Course fact file

Type of Course: Taught

Study Options: Full time, part time

Duration: 1 year full-time; 2 years part-time

Start date: September

Details

This exciting degree is offered exclusively through the Institute for Conflict, Cooperation and Security (ICCS), comprised of a number of leading scholars in the field of security who regularly produce cutting edge, internationally renowned research. The degree is principally taught through three core modules involving an important mix of academic and practitioner input to immerse students in the politics of cooperation and conflict transformation.

Theories of Global Cooperation

Theories of Global Cooperation taught by Professor Nicholas Wheeler introduces students to a range of theoretical approaches drawing on International Relations scholarship and other cognate disciplines, to investigate both the obstacles to, and possibilities for, ameliorating intractable conflicts. These insights are then applied to an analysis of cooperation in multilateral security regimes to assess the potential for meeting today’s urgent global security challenges.

Global Cooperation in Practice

Global Cooperation in Practice examines the practical application of the theories discussed in the first module through the prism of practitioner experience. This new module will be coordinated by Professor Mark Webber and will take the form of a series of guest lectures and breakout sessions delivered by practitioners with extensive experience of global cooperation.

Trust, Diplomacy and Conflict Transformation

Trust, Diplomacy and Conflict Transformation is a unique five day training programme included as a core module for the MSc in Global Cooperation and Security. It provides students with the opportunity to learn about different approaches to the developing field of trust-building in International Relations and to better understand how practitioners wrestle with the dilemmas of trust/mistrust in practical negotiating settings. This programme involves lectures delivered by internationally renowned academics and practitioners who have a wealth of experience of mediation and negotiation in deeply adversarial settings. We also equip participants with core mediation and communication skills through two days of intensive training in conjunction with the Birmingham-based NGO Responding to Conflict, a professional organisation actively engaged in conflict resolution efforts.

Who is the programme for?

Our programme is specifically designed to equip students with the necessary training and tools to work in academic or policy-related contexts in the broad field of international cooperation and conflict transformation.

Students on this programme will be well-placed to take advantage of career opportunities with a range of organisations including government agencies, international organisations, the armed forces, non-governmental organisations, think-tanks, the media, and multinational corporations.

Furthermore we will be enhancing the student experience with dedicated competitive internships which will be geared, where possible, to the research interests of students. 

Modules

This degree comprises the following modules:

Compulsory core modules:

Compulsory:

  • 60 credits - Dissertation MSc students to submit a 13,500 word dissertation (not applicable to Diploma Students)

60 credits from the following:

For the remaining 60 credits, students will be directed toward specialist pathways derived from existing Masters provision in the International Development Department (IDD), POLSIS and the Centre for Russian and East European Studies (CREES). The following pathways will be offered:

Development and Security

International Relations

Political Economy

Security in Russia and Eurasia

Social Science Research Training

Fees and funding

Fees for 2014 - 15:

  • UK/EU full-time: £6,570
  • UK/EU part-time: £3,285
  • International full-time: £15,525

Please check with the Institute for the latest fees information.

Scholarships and studentships
Scholarships may be available. International students can often gain funding through overseas research scholarships, Commonwealth scholarships or their home government.

For further information contact the School directly or visit studenthelp.bham.ac.uk 

Learn more about fees and funding.

Entry requirements

For the MSc programme you require a good Honours degree or its equivalent. For those whose first language is not English, a TOEFL or IELTS Certificate is required. Entry at Graduate Diploma level is possible for those with a reasonable first degree. Graduate Diploma students can upgrade to the Msc on satisfactory examination performance.

Learn more about entry requirements.

International students:

Academic requirements

We accept a range of qualifications, our country pages show you what qualifications we accept from your country.

English language requirements

You can satisfy our English language requirements in two ways:

How to apply

If you are interested in our new programme and would like to learn more, please contact Dr David Norman at d.j.norman@bham.ac.uk or visit the Institute for Conflict, Cooperation and Security (ICCS).

When clicking on the Apply Now button you will be directed to an application specifically designed for the programme you wish to apply for where you will create an account with the University application system and submit your application and supporting documents online. Further information regarding how to apply online can be found on the How to apply pages

Apply now

Learning and teaching

We advocate an enquiry-based approach to learning, which means that we encourage you to become an independent and self-motivated learner. Through the programme of study we offer, we will develop the qualities that employers value in today's university graduates - qualities that will set you apart in your future career.

To help you develop the above-mentioned skills, we adopt a range of teaching methods. They may include:

  • Lectures - listening to experts sharing their knowledge and discoveries in challenging and provocative ways. Students are expected to 'read-around' the subject matter of their lectures, adding to their understanding and developing their critical faculties and analytical skills.
  • Seminars - where you present and discuss your ideas and knowledge in smaller groups and debate interpretations and opinions with other students.
  • Tutorials - are your opportunity to discuss your work with your tutor, usually in small groups.
  • Workshops - are problem solving sessions facilitated by a member of academic staff; these sessions usually involve students working in groups.

Our lecturers and tutors will ensure you have all the resources you need to make the transition from A levels to the more rigorous demands of a degree.

More about teaching and learning at the University of Birmingham.

Enhancing your Student Experience

In the School of Government and Society we offer much more than a degree. As a student here, whether undergraduate or postgraduate, you have the opportunity to take part in a wide range of events, with some or all of the costs paid for by the School.

Students at high profile speakers event

Some of these are targeted to help you build skills and experience for your CV, others are more open events designed to expose you to high-level speakers on current debates relevant to all G&S students. 

Facilities

Departments from across the School of Government and Society are all based within the recently refurbished Muirhead Tower. Following a £50million refurbishment, Muirhead Tower offers state-of-the-art teaching and research study facilities including free wifi throughout the building and dedicated study areas for postgraduate research students.

Muirhead Tower comprises 12,000sq.m of floor space between two towers. The tower includes a number of sustainable features including solar shading (known in the trade as brise soliel) to control temperatures, as well as low energy fans; timed lighting to reduce energy waste; natural ventilation systems and a heat source taken from the University’s combined heat and power generator.

The space has been designed to create modern, attractive spaces for teaching and research accommodating 150 academic offices, 230 "hubs" for post graduate research students, teaching rooms for up to 100 people and a 200 seat lecture theatre.

Employability

The ICCS is pleased to announce that for the 2013/14 intake we can offer the possibility of undertaking voluntary work experience with the following organisations:

Placements will be offered on a competitive basis, over the summer term. Alongside these organisations, the ICCS has its own work experience programme that all MSc candidates will have the opportunity to be involved with.

Graduates from the School have gone on to work in a range of careers, with recent graduates working with organisations such as the United Nations, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, local authorities in the UK and overseas and the Department for International Development.

The School takes employability very seriously and as well as linking students to the central careers services, also incorporates opportunities to enhance their employment prospects, including highlighting work experience opportunities, encouraging volunteering in extra-curricular projects (such as student seminars and events).

More information about careers and employability.