Sustainable International Development Program
G = Objectives
Sustainable development considers
the current state of world development and probes issues that
may affect the interests of future generations. The SID program
examines models of development for their achievements in reducing
hunger and human inequality, raising quality of life, and conserving
the environment. The program seeks fresh thinking about complex
interrelationships, bridging areas of concern reserved traditionally
to scientists or social scientists, policy makers, human rights
advocates, or development practitioners.
The SID Master of Arts degree program aims to provide candidates with the knowledge and skills necessary to design and manage local, regional, and national or international sustainable development activities. The program particularly suits early to mid-career planning professionals who have responsibility for enterprise creation, poverty alleviation, environmental management, and regional development at governmental or nongovernmental levels. The program has an innovative professional curriculum which includes a year in residence studying with senior researchers as well as experienced field level development practioners, and a second year field project or internship applying and evaluating methods and models of development.
G = How to Be Admitted to the Graduate Program
The program is open to candidates from any country, especially from Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, the mid-East, and Eastern Europe. The program is also relevant to students from the U.S. and other industrialized countries who have a professional interest in sustainable international development. Brandeis University bases admission decisions for the SID Master's degree program on intellectual ability, academic preparation, work experience, and commitment. Applicants may offer evidence of these qualities with a first degree transcript, letters of recommendation, a statement of purpose, and an account of relevant professional experience. Development agencies (e.g., a ministry of planning, UNDP, USAID, and nongovernmental institutions and enterprises) may nominate candidates.
S = Faculty Advisory Committee
Laurence Simon, Director
L = Faculty Associates
(Romance and Comparative Literature)
(African and Afro-American
(Sociology and Womenís
G = Requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts
Program of Study
Students typically complete
the program in two years, including eight courses during their
year in residence, plus a Masterís Paper based on their
approved second year Masterís Project. In the first year,
students receive individually tailored formal instruction through
courses taught by senior researchers as well as field level development
practioners drawn from international development organizations.
From September through December students take core courses meant
to introduce concepts of sustainable development and elective
courses in a chosen subject area. Some students are placed on
short internships during the break between fall and spring semesters.
From January through May students take core courses meant to deepen
understanding of the natural and societal factors of development
planning and electives in their subject area. By midway into the
spring semester each student presents to the SID Faculty Advisory
Committee a proposal for a Masterís Project.
The core courses that are required
for first-year students are: HSSW 352a, SID 245b, SID 250a and
b,and SID 255b.
One year in residence as a
Following completion of the
first year course work students engage in either a field project
in their home countries (U.S. students go abroad), a purposeful
internship in a developmental organization, or in individualized
study under mentorship of a faculty advisor. The Masterís
Project results in the presentation of a Masterís Paper
to the Faculty Advisory Committee.
Students work closely with a faculty advisor throughout their two years on planning a course of study, writing their second year proposal and Masterís Paper, and on other issues related to living at Brandeis and in the Boston area. An in-country advisor is appointed for second year projects abroad.
S = Courses of Instruction
SID 245b Case Studies in Sustainable Development
A critical examination of specific cases illustrating the policies and practices that affect sustainability. In specific areas, students analyze data (e.g., food production, natural resources, energy, demography, and health) and grapple with the decisions that confront planners. Usually offered in the spring.
SID 250a Masterís Seminar
Considers topics useful to students for informed decision making; may include modules on watershed management, public health, geographic information systems, gender, and participatory appraisal. There will be field visits. Usually offered in the fall.
Mrs. Morgenthau, Mr. Simon,
SID 250b Masterís Seminar
A continuation of SID 250a. Considers energy options, communications, and conflict resolution; selected field visits. Students prepare proposals for second-year field projects. Usually offered in the spring.
Mrs. Morgenthau and Staff
SID 255b Applied Ecology
Introduces basic principles governing terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem functions: population dynamics, community structure, and biodiversity. Achieving sustainable management of ecological processes by preserving and restoring biotic integrity is presented in case histories. Usually offered every spring.
SID 300a Directed Readings
Usually offered every year.
SID 350a Directed Research
Usually offered every year.
S = Cross-Listed Courses
L = Core Courses
HSSW 352a Economic Perspectives
Presents basic concepts from microeconomics, such as market mechanism, economic models of choice, and efficiency. We consider how alternative systems solve economic problems and offer illustrations of how economic concepts can be used in policy analysis. Usually offered in every fall.
POL 280a Seminar: Comparative Institutions and Sustainable Development
Why similar policies using similar material resources, but different institutional paths, may lead to quite different outcomes. How different institutions (local, national, international, governmental, and nongovernmental) shape development performance, including production, poverty levels, and sustainability of the environment. Usually offered every year.
The following courses are only
a partial listing of the approved electives for the SID program.
Not all courses are offered in any one year; therefore, the Course
Schedule for each semester and your academic advisor should
Tradition and the Contemporary
Experience in Sub-Saharan Africa
Crosscultural Inquiry in Social
Organisms and the Environment
Introduction to the Economics
Leadership and Organizational
Management Information Systems
Race, Class, and Gender
Introduction to Statistics
The Government and Politics
Politics of Southeast Asia
Seminar: Human Rights and International
Quantitative Research Methods
Global Apartheid and Global
Organizations and Social Change
Women Leaders and Transformation
in Developing Countries
Internship in Womenís Studies: Prevention of Violence Against Women and Children