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Global Refugee Studies, Specialisation of International Relations

Master (2 years) of Science (MSc) in Social Sciences in International Relations, 120 ECTS
Agriculture and environment Humanities, social sciences, communication and arts Interdisciplinary Studies

Institution Aalborg University (AAU)
Campus Copenhagen
Duration 2 years
Tuition per term (Non-EU/EAA/CH) 3582 EUR
Tuition per term (EU/EAA/CH) 0 EUR


Global Refugee Studies is a two-year fulltime international MSc-study program which focuses on refugees and forced migration. The Danish and European debate regarding refugees has changed radically in the past few years. From an almost exclusive focus on assimilation and integration it has now turned into both a security and foreign policy issue and is regarded as a development problem. 

There is a serious lack of knowledge about the impact of this and many other situations involving global, regional and local refugees. The MSc-study program will add to bridge the gap of the missing knowledge about the status of forced migration.

Topics to be studied at Global Refugee Studies
  • Human rights
  • Transnational communities/identities
  • Displacement: Causes and effects
  • Globalization, ethnicity and processes of social transformation
  • Forced migration and internal population displacement
  • Problems with rehabilitation
  • Mal-development and climate change as a cause and consequence of displacement.
  • The roots of poverty and inequalities
  • The role of international government organizations and non-governmental organizations at both the international and local levels and their work with refugees
  • Criminality and trafficking
  • Gender, women and children
  • Culture and identity

Career Opportunities  

As a graduate you will have obtained a substantial knowledge about the refugee question, internally displaced people, migration, conflict, security, development and globalization. You will be capable of analyzing and handling complex and varied causes and implications of refugee and migration issues. You will be able to apply your knowledge and understanding of these issues to problem-solving strategies and policy-making in a local, national and global context.

Typical job opportunities are in international and national government organizations and non-governmental organizations where analytical work and strategies concerning refugee and migration issues are in the centre:
  • Regulatory bodies at the local, regional, national and international level (for instance Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Municipalities and Regions)
  • National or international organizations (for instance Red Cross, UN, international NGOs).


To apply you need a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field of the social sciences for instance political science, sociology or economics. If you have a background in Humanities or the Technical or Natural Sciences it is possible to apply if you otherwise have obtained relevant knowledge and qualifications. Assessment of the applications will be done on an individual basis. 

In addition, documentation will be required to verify that your proficiency in English is at an acceptable level. 
Read more about the language requirements of Aalborg University

Apply directly at Aalborg University with all relevant documentation.

To find out whether the level of your foreign certificate or diploma satisfies the general entry requirements, you should contact Aalborg University directly. A list of the most commonly recognized exams and diplomas can be found at the Danish Agency for Higher Education

Exchange students should contact their home institution for information on application procedures and deadlines.


There is a tuition fee for all full-time degree students who hold a citizenship from outside EU/EAA/Switzerland. Students within an exchange programme are not required to pay tuition.  

For Further Information

Information from the Danish Agency for Higher Education can be located at

You will find information about the Danish assessment of foreign qualifications in Guide to diploma recognition

About the Educational System in general visit the section The Danish Higher Education System

Autumn | Non-EU and EU applicants

Application date
Mar 01
Start date
Sep 01



Aalborg University Copenhagen (AAU-Cph) constitutes Aalborg University’s educational and research activities in the Greater Copenhagen area. All activities are gathered in a new integrated research campus with several innovative start-up-businesses at Sydhavnen close to central Copenhagen.

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