Global Master of Arts in
Diplomacy & International Relations (Full-Time)

Prepare for a career in international, regional, and global affairs or diplomacy to address some of the most critical issues facing the planet.

At a Glance

For programs beginning in 2022

Credits

34

Format

Full-Time

Final Deadline

May 1 for fall start

Duration

1 Year

Instructional Sites

South Africa, Switzerland, United States

Critical Global Issue of Study

Geopolitics & Power

Geopolitics & Power Icon

Please note that SIT will make every effort to maintain its programs as described. To respond to emergent situations, like COVID-19, however, SIT may have to change or cancel programs.

WHY A MASTER'S IN DIPLOMACY AND INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS?

Offering SIT’s unique brand of immersive, place-based learning from the world’s top locations in diplomacy and international relations, this one-year master’s degree provides you with key points of comparison among U.S., European, and African perspectives as you gain a mastery of the global political system and how to maneuver within it.

In your first semester, travel to Washington, DC, to participate in a two-week traveling seminar, interacting with policymakers in the field. You will also live in Geneva, Switzerland, to study multilateral diplomacy, leadership, and strategic decision-making. From there, embark on a three-day traveling seminar to Brussels, Belgium, the seat of European Parliament, to examine the European Union, European integration, supranational governance, and how power transcends national boundaries.

During your spring semester, you will spend 14 weeks in South Africa, investigating non-western perspectives on international relations, south-south diplomacy, and the politics of the African Union. From your base in Durban, explore the history of apartheid South Africa, travel to Johannesburg, and, in your free time, trek into the bush. At the close of the semester, you will go to the African Union headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

In your final semester, undertake a professional practicum in a location and position of your choosing, working in close consultation with your faculty advisor to ensure alignment with your career goals. At the end of the summer semester, you will choose to present your capstone paper either on SIT’s campus in Vermont or online.

Whether you are seeking a position at the U.S. State Department, the United Nations, an international nongovernmental organization, or other prestigious institution, SIT will prepare you for a career in international, regional, and global affairs or diplomacy to address some of the most critical issues facing the planet.

Career Paths

Students who have graduated with this degree have worked in careers such as:

  • Foreign Service officer

  • International relations specialist

  • Foreign affairs analyst

  • Senior policy specialist

  • Researcher at NGO or think tank

  • Program coordinator or manager

  • International relations officer

  • Consular officer

  • Research and policy manager

Visit the SIT blog to read more about SIT Graduate Institute alumni careers.

Program Sites

Washington, DC

Explore today’s highly complex system of global governance—the role of NGOs, government agencies, and heavyweight international players—from the U.S. capital. Interact with professionals and policymakers, build your network, and visit agencies and organizations such as the U.S. State Department; the United States Agency for International Development (USAID); the United Nations Foundation; the United States Institute of Peace; and the World Resources Institute.

Geneva, Switzerland

The nexus of multilateral diplomacy and global affairs, Geneva is a center for international organizations, The city offers unparalleled opportunities to meet with top academics, researchers, and a wide range of U.N. agencies, institutions, and NGOs. While immersed in Geneva’s international diplomacy, you will experience Francophone culture and access to top experts in the field, allowing you to build your global network.

Excursion highlights include: 

Brussels, Belgium 

  • European Parliament
  • International organizations, NGOs, and policymakers

Durban and Johannesburg, South Africa  

A focal point for multiculturalism, inequality, and human rights, South Africa will allow you to witness the effects of apartheid, legally enforced racial discrimination, and its economic and political impact on an entire nation. Gain a profound understanding of post-apartheid and post-colonial views, how they affect our world today, and how unequal balances of power ultimately can be overcome. Learn from government leaders, social activists, and academics while you live in Durban, a coastal city in eastern South Africa known for its African, Indian, and colonial influences.

Excursion highlights may include:

Durban

  • ACCORD, the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes
    Research institutes examining African political affairs in post-apartheid South Africa
  • Game drive/safari to see the big five (lion, leopard, elephant, rhino, buffalo) at South Africa’s oldest game park (optional for students, and not an official part of the program)
  • Hikes along some of South Africa’s picturesque coastlines.

Johannesburg

  • The Apartheid Museum
  • The Nelson Mandela Foundation
  • Desmond Tutu’s and Nelson Mandela’s houses on Soweto’s Vilakazi Street

Ethiopia 

  • African Union, the continental union of Africa, comprising 55 member states
  • Meet with leaders and policymakers in Addis Ababa

Summer residencies and capstone presentation typically take place on SIT’s Vermont campus, or online virtually.

Practicum in location of choice

Please note that in order to take advantage of dynamic learning opportunities, program excursions may occasionally vary.

Academics

Coursework

In this program, you will learn:  

  • Fundamentals of diplomacy and international relations 
  • Inner workings of international organizations and how they relate to one another 
  • How to observe and assess international affairs in real-world settings  
  • The functions of international agencies, think tanks, NGOs, and government agencies  
  • Perspectives on the European Union and the future of Europe  
  • Post-colonial and middle state perspectives  
  • The importance of energy diplomacy and the African political economy  
  • The nuances of strategic foresight and scenario-building  
  • How to approach and engage in negotiation, mediation, and dialogue  
  • The roles and perspectives of diverse stakeholders — states, international organizations, NGOs, and citizens — in approaching diplomacy  
  • How relations among actors can enable new opportunities that challenge the status quo 

This program requires completion of the Language and Culture Proficiency Requirement for graduation. Details can be found in the Catalog.


Please expand the sections below to see detailed course information.

This is SIT

  • We value active togetherness, reciprocity, and respect as the essential ingredients for building a sustainable community.
  • With open minds, empathy, and courage, we facilitate intercultural understanding and respect for the commonalities and differences between people.
  • We champion social inclusion & justice in all that we are and all that we do, from ensuring our community and our programs amplify the voices, agency, and dignity of all people to deliberately instilling the principles and practices of inclusion in all ofour work.
  • We are committed to human and environmental well-being through sustainability and contributing to a better world for all living and future generations.

Semester One: United States and Switzerland (14 Credits)

  • Foundations of Diplomacy and International Relations  
  • Strategic Foresight and Scenario-Building 
  • International Organizations and Multilateral Diplomacy
  • The Future of Europe  
  • Practitioner Inquiry 
  • Professional Development Seminar

Semester Two: South Africa (12 Credits)

  • Negotiation, Mediation, and Dialogue  
  • South-South Relations in the Context of BRICS  
  • Energy Diplomacy and the African Political Economy  
  • Continental Solidarity and the African Union  
  • Practitioner Inquiry 
  • Professional Development Seminar

Semester Three: Practicum and Capstone (8 Credits)

  • Practicum 
  • Capstone Paper 
  • Capstone Seminar and Presentation  

Professional Practicum

A cornerstone of the SIT Global Master’s in Diplomacy and International Relations is the practicum. This will allow you to apply learning from the classroom directly to real-world settings while getting hands-on, professional experience you can put to immediate use after you graduate. 

For your final semester, SIT and your advisor will support you in finding an approved practicum with an international agency, think tank, NGO, government agency, or other organization involved in diplomatic relations and international relations in a location of your choice. This practicum experience will give you the opportunity to work in the field of international affairs, as well as expand your professional network. 

During the practicum phase, you will remain engaged with faculty and other students and receive course credit for documenting the integration of your knowledge and skills while working in a professional context. 

Faculty & Staff

Diplomacy & International Relations (Full-Time)

Bruce W. Dayton, PhD
Executive Director, Conflict Transformation Across Cultures (CONTACT) • Chair, MA in Diplomacy and International Relations • Associate Professor and Chair, MA in Peace and Justice Leadership
Imraan Buccus, PhD
Assistant Professor, MA in Peace and Justice Leadership • Associate Chair, MA in Diplomacy and International Relations
Goran Jovanovic, PhD
Faculty, Global Master of Arts in Diplomacy & International Relations
Gyula Csurgai, PhD
Faculty, Global Master of Arts in Diplomacy & International Relations
Esperanza Duran
Faculty, Global Master of Arts in Diplomacy & International Relations
Michael Akerib, PhD
Faculty, Global Master of Arts in Diplomacy & International Relations
Orli Fridman, PhD
Chair, MA in Social Justice and Advocacy • Affiliated Faculty, MA in Peace and Justice Leadership
Candice Moore, PhD
Faculty, MA in Diplomacy and International Relations
Patrick Bond, PhD
Faculty, MA in Diplomacy and International Relations

Accommodations

You will be supported by SIT staff on location in arranging housing during your time abroad and traveling to Washington, DC. Stay in small hotels (shared or private); guesthouses (these are simple, inexpensive and clean, and may include food); or ask to be placed with a homestay family, where you will be immersed in the local culture and customs. Please note that homestayare less expensive but also less independent. 

Discover the Possibilities