Qualification: Masters in Social Sciences
Extent: 120 ECTS
Duration: two years
Based in research institute
The Master’s Degree Programme in Peace, Mediation and Conflict Research (PEACE) provides a multi- and intradisciplinary approach to peace and conflict research. Ranked as a top-10 degree in Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding by The Peacekeeper in 2017, the PEACE programme facilitates the understanding of complex nature of wars and conflicts as well as their short and long term consequences. The programme focuses not only on the study of conflict but primarily on its transformation and on the conditions for peaceful change. In the programme, it is examined, for example, how violent conflicts, ethnic and religious discrimination and human rights violations produce forced displacement and how different actors can respond to these crisis situations. Furthermore, the programme deals also with the role of the environment and natural resources in conflict and peacebuilding. Students learn about the preconditions for conflict resolution and sustainable peace in local as well as in international and global contexts. Special emphasis is given to various tools and phases of conflict transformation -- peacebuilding, mediation, reconciliation and dialogue. More than just the study of conflict dynamics, the emphasis of the programme lies on the transformation of violent conflicts to achieve sustainable peace. Along with the Nordic tradition of peace research, the programme aims to take a holistic as well as a normative approach.
(Photo: Noora Maja)
The MDP in Peace, Mediation and Conflict research is a two-year full-time study programme. The first year focuses on the introduction to the multidisciplinary nature of peace and conflict research. During the second year students gain a deeper understanding of their specific research interests as they participate in the thesis seminar and concentrate on writing their Master’s thesis under the guidance of their personal thesis supervisor. A great deal of flexibility is allowed when making the personal study plan and there is also the possibility to complete an optional internship.
The programme is hosted by the Tampere Peace Research Institute (TAPRI), which is internationally acknowledged for its high quality research since its founding in 1969. The curriculum and teaching of the programme is directly linked with the research conducted in TAPRI. The researchers of the institute are specialized in various research topics such as identity politics, peace mediation, nationalism, history, international relations and security, human mobility, peacebuilding, gender, and the role of the environment in conflict. This close contact with the research community of the Institute not only guarantees the high level of teaching but also allows the students to have supervision and dialog with the experts of the field and, perhaps, to consider a research career for themselves. Furthermore, visiting guest speakers regularly bring perspectives from the professional world of peacebuilding and mediation, giving students the opportunity to engage with practitioners.
The PEACE programme is located within the Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Tampere. It is an international degree programme under the Global Society Framework of the Faculty, and it cooperates with a similar programme in Åbo Akademi in Vaasa, where it is possible for students to take courses in developmental psychology.
(Photo: Frank Möller)
Like the teaching staff, the students of the PEACE programme also have a wide variety of academic and professional backgrounds. In addition, they come from different parts of the world, thus making the studies in the programme an enriching intercultural experience for all. Students benefit from the close relations between the programme and the research institute, as this ensures that there is an effective and supportive learning environment. Interactive modes of teaching, which are emphasized in the programme, as well as the independent nature of Master’s Degree-level education in Finland are strengths which will aid the students to adapt to research and future employment.
The programme prepares students for both doctoral studies as well as for professional activity in various tasks in society, ranging from interpersonal relationships to international conflict situations. For instance, graduates could proceed to have careers as researchers, analysts, consultants or political advisors in government agencies, international organisations, research institutes or NGOs. It is also possible for students to continue to do a PhD with TAPRI after their Master’s degree.