Master of Philosophy in Peace and Conflict Transformation


Program Description

The Master's programme offers an in-depth understanding of the key issues informing the field of peace and conflict studies. It provides interdisciplinary insights into the nature and causes of conflicts, as well as efforts at building peace and restoring confidence in institutions in conflict-affected societies. It actively recruits students from Nordic and non-Nordic countries to create and promote cross-cultural teaching and learning experiences.

Programme description

The Master's degree programme in Peace and Conflict Transformation (MPCT) offers interdisciplinary insights into the nature and causes of conflicts, and analytical skills for handling conflicts by peaceful means.

The programme draws upon the history and geography of the city of Tromsø in the relatively peaceful High North to bring innovation to peace and conflict studies. With a long history of working towards peaceful co-existence among local ethnic and cultural groups, the region provides a unique setting for the study of ways of transforming relationships between individuals, groups and institutions from destructive to constructive bonds.

Teaching is intensive the first year, as core debates and perspectives are addressed through compulsory courses.

The second year focuses mainly on Master's Thesis projects. These thesis projects are designed by the students themselves, depending on their diverse interests and experiences. It is possible to collect data from any part of the world to support such self-selected Master's Thesis projects.

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of the programme, the candidate should have the following learning outcomes:


Advanced knowledge of:

  • the history and evolution of peace and conflict studies as a distinct field of study
  • the key theories, debates and issues informing peace and conflict studies
  • the nature and causes of violent conflict at all levels of human interaction - interpersonal, intergroup, community, national and global
  • the diverse mechanisms for transforming conflictual relationships between individuals, groups and institutions into constructive bonds
  • the diverse mechanisms for handling the consequences of violent conflict
  • the existing state of knowledge in closely related fields of study in an overall multi-disciplinary perspective


Capacity to:

  • identify and review relevant literature on specific issues
  • formulate research questions and select appropriate theoretical and methodological frameworks
  • design and carry out an independent research project, which involves the use of diverse data sources, under supervision
  • collect, collate and interpret large amounts of data and communicate results effectively
  • assess the quality of theoretical and methodological perspectives underlying other scholarly works


Ability to:

  • present and discuss aspects of one's own work effectively at academic and public arenas
  • read and obtain a nuanced understanding of texts, and provide critical and constructive feedback
  • analyze relevant academic and research ethical problems
  • apply knowledge and skills in new areas in order to carry out advanced assignments and projects
  • contribute to new thinking and innovation processes

Teaching and assessment

The set curriculum makes a fulltime study for 2 years, approximately 1500-1800 work hours per year.

Activities are lectures, seminars, student presentations and peer reviews, individual supervision, excursions, and guest lectures.

The teaching and learning methods are problem-based, i.e. using problems and issues informing everyday life as teaching materials. The teaching involves lectures, seminars and self-readings. The multiple teaching methods are designed to facilitate the students' problem-solving capabilities. Every student will be assigned a thesis supervisor in the first year of study. Supervision is given through seminars and individual tutorials.

Job prospectives

The MPCT prepares students for challenging careers in sectors as diverse as security and diplomatic services, emergency and humanitarian assistance, international aid and donor agencies, and non-governmental organizations. In addition, MPCT offers valuable competencies and skills for those who wish to pursue training in professions such as journalism and teaching. Ultimately, MPCT candidates may apply for admission to relevant PhD programmes.

Access to further studies

On successful completion of the degree programme, students may be qualified for admission to a PhD programme in a number of academic areas at the UiT the Arctic University of Norway or elsewhere.

Last updated Oct 2018

About the School

UIT The Arctic University of Norway is the northernmost university of the world. Its location on the edge of the Arctic implies a mission. The Arctic is of increasing global importance. Climate change ... Read More

UIT The Arctic University of Norway is the northernmost university of the world. Its location on the edge of the Arctic implies a mission. The Arctic is of increasing global importance. Climate change, the exploitation of Arctic resources and environmental threats are topics of great public concern, and which the University of Tromsø takes special interest in. At UiT The Arctic University of Norway you can explore global issues from a close-up perspective. Read less
Tromsø , Alta , Narvik + 2 More Less