executive master of advanceD studies in humanitarian action (mas)

Master of Advanced Studies in Humanitarian Action (MAS)

Photo credit: ICRC

This Master programme is a unique blended learning postgraduate course on humanitarian action providing current and future humanitarian professionals with the managerial, theoretical and practical skills needed to optimize responses to humanitarian crises. Students will complete the first term online, and then learn together in Geneva for the remainder of the course.


Students will learn to critically analyse humanitarian responses through a good understanding of the concepts of humanitarian action. They will acquire management and strategy skills and tools to develop, coordinate and evaluate a humanitarian response.


The Master programme is a modular, executive training of 60 ECTS credits composed of four terms:

Term One: Quality Management of Humanitarian Projects (Certificate in Advanced Studies: 1o ECTS Credits)
Online (duration: 7 weeks)

  • Week 1: Context analysis and strategic framework
  • Week 2: Assessing needs and capacities
  • Week 3: Planning projects and their monitoring system (I)
  • Week 4: Planning projects and their monitoring system (II)
  • Week 5: Programming interventions
  • Week 6: Monitoring and evaluation (M&E)
  • Week 7: Critical review of strategies and projects


Term Two: Critical Analysis of Humanitarian Action (Diploma in Advanced Studies: 24 ECTS Credits)


  • Module 1: Humanitarianisms
  • Module 2: Contexts, Actions and Consequences
  • Module 3: Revisiting Vulnerability and Needs
  • Module 4: Humanitarian Governance, Norms and Principles
  • Module 5: The Humanitarians


Term Three: Implementation of Humanitarian Projects (Certificate of Advanced Studies: 10 ECTS Credits)


Selection of five elective courses from the following list:


Term four: Dissertation or Work Experience (16 ECTS Credits)

Dissertation to include:

  • Literature review;
  • Context analysis;
  • Reports on thematic issues relevant to humanitarian action;
  • Case studies.


  • Report on work experience gained during the studies


  • Professionals in the humanitarian, development or social sector looking to develop their competencies as well as reflect and capitalise on their experiences.
  • Professionals from other sectors who wish to increase their understanding of the humanitarian sector for a potential career change.
  • Graduate students with relevant volunteer or intern experience, looking to undertake a post-graduate course with a view to entering the humanitarian sector.


60 ECTS - Credits. Once the students successfully complete the Master of Advanced Studies in Humanitarian Action's full programme according to our requirements, they obtain a joint degree delivered by the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (IHEID) and the University of Geneva (UNIGE), and accredited by the Swiss Agency for Accreditation and Quality Assurance (AAQ).


Prof. Karl BLANCHET, Director, Geneva Centre for Education & Research in Humanitarian Action


  • Option I: One year full-time  (Only this option is available for students applying for a scholarship). 

Duration: from 15 September, 2020 to 31 August, 2021

Tuition fee: 15,000 CHF

  • Option II: Two/Three year Master - With this option, the MAS can be taken over a two or three years period, and students can commence at various times to suit their needs.

Duration: Entry date flexible

Tuition fee: 17,000 CHF


Candidates applying for a scholarship for the 1 year MAS and/or who need a VISA29 February, 2020

All other candidates: 30 June, 2020



Curious to know more about our Master?

Listen to what our director, academic team and students have to say about it.

Watch our video !