Deadline : 28 February, 2019

Africa is experiencing radical changes. Whether it is in the economic, social, environmental demographic or political sphere, African societies are evolving fast. This Master’s programme provides the critical distance needed to understand these transformations in all their complexity. The curriculum stands out for its interdisciplinarity, combining approaches from the social, natural and human sciences. It also provides a long-term perspective and gives students the opportunity to study Africa not in isolation, but in terms of the continent’s interactions with the rest of the world.

The Master begins with the interdisciplinary core curriculum. After the first semester, students can choose between two areas of specialisation: «Environment and societies», which focuses on environmental challenges and the way they influence life in society; and «States, societies and development», which examines the formation of states since the colonial era and their role in development-related issues at various levels.

Geneva, which houses many international organisations, is a unique place to study these dynamics. This Master’s programme also places particular emphasis on experience in the field, and students can take advantage of exchanges with UNIGE’s partner universities in Africa. To complete their course, students choose between a «research» option, which includes a fieldwork and a thesis, and a «professionalising» option involving a work placement/internship over several months and a detailed internship report.


2 years (4 semesters)


Knowledge of English is recommended.


Bachelor’s degree or equivalent degree.
Merit-based admission.


4 semesters (max. 6 semesters) | 120 credits ECTS
Required courses from the core curriculum
36 credits

  •  Prehistory and precolonial history of Africa
  •  Colonial history of Africa
  •  Environment
  •  Development economics
  •  States, territories and development in Africa
  •  Critical approach to world divisions

Specialised courses
42 credits
Choice between:

  •  Specialisation 1: Environment and societies
  •  Specialisation 2: States, societies and development

12 credits
Work placement/Internship or thesis
30 credits


Given the length of the programme, Master’s students are allowed to go on exchange for one semester maximum. Students may go on exchange as
early as their 3rd semester and may earn no more than 30 credits at another university. The thesis cannot be substituted. A stay in the feld is  strongly recommended.

Application deadline is 28 February, 2019.

For more information and to apply, click here. 

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