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Career Library

Development Studies


Development studies is an interdisciplinary branch of social sciences. This is majorly emerging in the third world countries where they have topics and domains to cover under developmental studies. Developmental studies is a theoretical, inclusive and soul searching enterprise. The primary focus of developmental studies is to study the improvement in people’s life. It helps you get insight into developmental theory, understanding of the structural issues and questions of development. A student pursuing Developmental Studies would attend to various topics such as rural and urban development, philosophy of development research, law and development, women studies etc. Various professional opportunities arise in developmental studies such as in UN, intergovernemental organization, NGOs, journalistic jobs, private sector consultancy firms etc. A career in developmental studies will help you in being involved in your own country’s development and attend to various demands of it.

Career Opportunities in Development Studies

  • Consulting Firms
    Developmental studies opens up professional opportunities in various consulting and aid firms in private sector PwC, KPMG etc.
  • NGOs and Trusts
    Most of the NGOs hire people with a degree in developmental studies such as SMILE Foundation, Pratham, GOONJ etc. Sir Dorabji Tata Trust & Allied Trusts: Tata Trusts also work towards the society.
  • Media Houses
    You can look for jobs in Media Houses as a Journalist if you love to write. Apart form that, your work role would include working with social media, activist media, participatory media and specialised broadcast media to inform and engage public social topics like social inequality, human rights, gender issues and environmental change.
  • Government Organizations
    Job opportunities are available in UN, inter governemental organizations as social worker and policy analyst wherein they are directly involved in understanding the development, history and provide with innovative ideas to foster development. Doors to Civil services also opens from here.
  • Academics
    Individuals pursuing developmental studies can also land up in academic area such as in school and colleges, wherein they will teach students about the developmental studies and impart their own knowledge.
  • Research
    As developmental studies course privides with a huge study area, so the individual studies about a lot of things in which they can go for research through the help of their mentors and/or professors or by joining an organization which would provide with the aid for it.

How to Pursue a Career in Development Studies

Stream Graduation After Graduation After Post Graduation
Path 1
Class XII with any stream Pursure Bachelors degree in Social Sciences and Humanities (Psychology/History/P.Sc,etc.) Pursue Masters degree in Developmental Studies Pursue Phd. In developmental studies
Path 2
Class XII with any stream Pursure Bachelors degree in Developmental studiesPursue Masters degree in Developmental Studies Pursue Phd. In developmental studies

Important Facts

  • To get into a bachelor's program, one must have qualified 10+2 from a recognized board and obtained 55% marks
  • Colleges at Master's level conduct entrance exams.

Leading Institutes

Top Development Studies Institutes in India
College Location Website
Tata Institute of Social Sciences Mumbai www.tiss.edu
Christ Univeristy Bangalore www.christuniversity.in
Universiy of Delhi Delhi www.du.ac.in/du
Ambedhkar University Agra www.aud.ac.in/academic/schools/sds
Madras Institute for development studies Chennai www.mids.ac.in
Jamia milia islamia Delhi www.jmi.ac.in
Top Development Studies Institutes in the World
Institution Location Website
Harvard Univeristy United States www.ids.ac.uk/idsorganisation/harvard-university
University of Sussex United Kingdom www.sussex.ac.uk/study/masters/courses/institute-of-development-studies/development-studies-ma
London School of economics and political science United Kingdom www.lse.ac.uk
The Australia national university Australia www.programsandcourses.anu.edu.au/major/DEST-MAJ
University of California, Berkeley United States www.berkeley.edu
University of Cape Town South Africa www.sociology.uct.ac.za/honours-and-masters-development-studies
Wageningen University Netherlands www.wur.nl/en/wageningen-university.htm
University of Toronto Canada www.steinhardt.nyu.edu/courses/mcc
University of Tokyo Japan www.utoronto.ca
Standford University United states www.stanford.edu

Work Description

  • A career in development studies involves being engaged in policy making decision, policy changes, evaluating it etc.
  • It also involves working as a social worker and attending to the personal needs of the communities and understanding as well as solving the alleviating issues of the society.
  • Journalistic developmentalists are directly involved in covering sensitive issues related to women, society and talk about the development of the nation.
  • Governmental organizations also hire development studies students as they provide with suggestions and advices on better development of a nation by attending to various issues.
  • A role of teacher of development studies is to attend to curriculum and impart their own knowledge and experience to the students.

Pros & Cons of a Career in Development Studies

  • This provides with a sense of internal satisfaction for doing your bit towards the betterment of the society through understanding the pertaining issues and addressing to them.
  • Provides with the in depth knowledge and information about the culture, heritage and history of various domains.
  • Subject also covers huge array of topics such as politics, economics, sociology, psychology, media studies etc.
  • Requires investment of time and effort for research.
  • It also involves long working hours and emotional toll on the individuals.
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