MPhil in Environment, Society & Development
The taught element of the programme is made up of two compulsory papers, both of which are taught in the Department of Geography (Politics, Nature and Society; and Climate Change, Politics, Society and Economy). In addition candidates will choose two other papers from a range of options. One of these is taught within the Department as a part of the Conservation Leadership MPhil (Masters) programme (Conservation Politics). The other papers are: Institutions and Development; Sociology and Politics of Development; Migration, Development and Environmental Change (all of which are taught in the Centre of Development Studies); and the Contemporary Politics of Africa (which is taught in the Centre of African Studies).
The other element of the programme is the 10,000 word dissertation. This is on an agreed topic, and is supervised by a member of staff. The dissertation assessment includes a presentation component.
The overall aim of the course is to integrate a general understanding of key issues with the opportunity to specialise and develop specific knowledge and skills in areas of mutual interest to staff and students. There is an active research community in the Department of Geography in fields closely relevant to the course, especially the Society, Environment and Development research cluster.
Who teaches on the course, and who supervises theses?
In recent years the following have contributed to the MPhil (Note: not all staff contribute in any one year)
- William M Adams, Moran Professor of Conservation and Development and the Co-Director of the Society, Environment and Development research cluster
- Tim Bayliss-Smith, Reader in Pacific Geography
- Michael Bravo, University Senior Lecturer in Scott Polar Research Institute
- Gemma Burgess, Research Associate, Department of Land Economy
- Alex Jeffrey, University Lecturer
- Emma Mawdsley, University Senior Lecturer
- Susan E. Owens, Professor of Environment and Policy, and Co-Director of the Society, Environment and Development research cluster
- Sarah A. Radcliffe, Professor in Latin American Geography
- Ivan Scales, College Lecturer, St Catharine's College
- Robert Small, Research Associate, Department of Geography
- Bhaskar Vira, University Senior Lecturer
- Piers Vitebsky, Scott Polar Research Institute
- Elizabeth E. Watson, University Senior Lecturer
Student development has to be rapid, and progress in the first term is monitored through the submission of one practice review essay (2000 words) and one practice essay (4000 words). Feedback is provided and is designed to help students with the assessed essays they will submit later in the year for the core paper and chosen options, as well as helping with the dissertation.
Each student is assigned a personal supervisor. The supervisor's main role is to assist in the choice of dissertation topic, and to help the student prepare for and undertake research for his or her dissertation.