One of the most pressing challenges of our time is achieving sustainable development in the face of global poverty, conflict and insecurity, natural disasters, and climate change. The Master's in Development Practice (MDP) program at Emory University is designed to meet those challenges by combining hands-on learning and field-based training with rigorous studies in a broad range of academic disciplines.

The key features that make the Emory MDP unique among  similarly oriented programs are: 

  • Coursework in the natural, social, health, and management sciences taught in top-ranked academic departments at Emory University;
  • Concentration areas (ex. global health and wellbeing; sustainable environments and livelihoods; corporate social responsibility; monitoring and evaluation; gender justice);
  • Two summer field practicums (10 weeks each) with leading development organizations in their projects in Asia, Africa, Latin America, and the Middle East;
  • Academic-year internships (paid and unpaid) within Atlanta-based NGOs working on international development, human rights, environmental conservation, housing security, etc.;
  • Engaged learning experience within community-based organizations working with underserved populations (e.g. refugees, human trafficking victims) in the Atlanta area (optional)
  • Interaction with prominent development experts and practitioners at the CDC, CARE, The Carter Center, Habitat for Humanity and other organizations;
  • Workshops on programmatic skills (ex. monitoring and evaluation, Geographic Information Systems; qualitative data analysis; cross-cultural team management; organizational leadership);
  • Emphasis on critical thinking and systemic understanding of development practices
  • Small class-size enabling collaborative learning and personalized mentoring by Emory faculty

Read why a master's in international development/development practice is the most in-demand degree for jobs in the sector.

MDP Curriculum

The Emory MDP curriculum combines natural, social, health sciences and management.

See Academic Overview


The Field Practicum is a core component of the Emory MDP curriculum.

Learn About MDP Fieldwork