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School of Government & International Affairs

MSc Conflict Prevention and Peacebuilding

The focus of governments and humanitarian NGOs has progressively shifted towards conflict prevention and building a sustainable peace. Yet to prevent conflict or to build a secure state and society after conflict involves a complex set of skills straddling conflict resolution, conflict transformation, conflict analysis, state stabilisation, peace processes, humanitarian intervention and peace building. This MSc offers the opportunity to develop operational and vocational skills important for conflict prevention, conflict mediation and negotiation, and post-conflict reconstruction and is attractive to both mid-career practitioners and graduates seeking a career in conflict prevention, conflict mediation or post-conflict reconstruction. 

While rooted in peace and conflict studies, the MSc draws on strategic and security studies as well as development studies, enabling much needed cross-fertilisation between these traditionally divergent perspectives. It draws on real-life case studies as well as interactive role plays, and exposes students to both cutting-edge academic developments and the latest practitioner experience.


A single bursary of £5000 will be available for academic year 2014/15 to help towards tuition fees.

If you wish to be considered for a bursary please :

  • Submit a research proposal (attached as a document) of no more than 1,500 words excluding sources to

Deadline for bursary applications is 25th April 2014

For more information and/or advice contact:

The programmes consist of  :-

  • 5 core modules

  • 3 professional workshops (from a choice of 8), or two professional workshops and a field trip

  • a research dissertation or work-related equivalent aimed at providing in-depth understanding of a particular topic selected by students themselves

 The intensive professional workshops are open to practitioners who are not on the MAs as Continuing Professional Development courses, enhancing students' opportunities for networking and learning from other practitioners' perspectives

Core Modules:-

  • Defence, Development and Diplomacy in Conflict: Evolving Actors, Factors and Paradigms
  • Conflict Prevention and Peacebuilding
  • Responses: Peace Processes and Political Negotiations
  • Recovery and Reconstruction: Building Peace, Civil Society and State-Building from Below
  • Capstone Exercise: Humanitarian Intervention Simulation (in MSc-specific roles)
  • Dissertation (or work-related equivalent)

Optional modules:

  • Re-thinking Counter Terrorism
  • Law and Conflict (delivered by Durham Law School)
  • Religion, Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding
  • Negotiation in Asymmetric Conflict
  • Conflict Mediation
  • International Human Rights Law, Development and Commerce (delivered by Durham Law School)
  • Conflict Sensitive Project Design
  • Development in Conflict
  • Fieldtrip (non-CPD course)

How to Apply

For more information on the course and how to apply please contact:

Dr Jeroen Gunning              

Prof Nick Lewer                       

Tel: +44 (0)191 334 5656

or Apply on Line

When you are asked to select a code, please select L2K 909 for MSc Conflict Prevention and Peacebuilding