12 months
5650 EUR/year
5650 EUR/year
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


The European Master’s Programme in Human Rights and Democratisation (EMA) is a one-year, full-time course that provides a practice and policy-oriented approach to learning that combines legal, political, historical, anthropological, and philosophical perspectives of human rights and democratisation with skill-building activities and a field trip exercise.

Visit the official programme website for more information


The European Master’s Programme in Human Rights and Democratisation (EMA) is the main teaching programme of the Global Campus of Human Rights (GC).

EMA is a one-year advanced master’s course aimed at preparing professionals to respond to the requirements of daily work in international organisations, field operations, governmental and non-governmental bodies, and academia. 

Programme Structure

The first semester takes place at the Global Campus of Human Rights premises in Venice from mid-September to the end of January. Students are taught by academics from the 42 EMA participating universities, as well as experts and representatives of IGOs and NGOs. The first semester curriculum consists of a core programme organised in five thematic sections, a series of elective courses and skill-building activities and the field trip to Kosovo.

Field Trip

The field trip is a trademark of EMA and has been organised by Mag. Marijana Grandits (from the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute of Human Rights at the University of Vienna) for years, first in Bosnia and Herzegovina (1998-2003) and then in Kosovo since 2004. This study trip aims to provide insights into the practical tasks, difficulties, and expectations human rights officers face in the field, and to get a better understanding of the situation in a post-conflict country.

The field trip usually takes place in mid-January and comprises visits to international organisations as well as local and regional nongovernmental organizations working on human rights issues, such as property claims, torture related questions, legal advice, women’s rights, democratic elections, free media and children’s rights. Students stay with host families and are required to participate in all activities and events organised by the EMA academic staff, external facilitators from the EU and other experts. The field trip is included in the tuition fees.

During the EMA second semester students relocate to one of the 42 participating universities to follow courses in an area of specialisation of their own choice and to undertake personal supervised research finalised in the writing of their master‘s thesis. 

Programme Structure

The first semester covers the following topics: Human Rights Institutions, Mechanisms and Standards; Globalisation, Development and Human Rights; Human Rights in Context: Historical, Philosophical, Anthropological and Religious Perspectives; Building and Protecting Democracy; Human Rights, Peace and Security.

Elective courses and skill-building activities are offered on New Technologies & Human Rights, Transitional Justice, Gender Relations & Human Rights, Children Rights, Digital Verification, Human Rights Impact Assessment and Project Management. In addition, students have the choice between courses in International Law, International Relations or Philosophy of Human Rights. The resident EMA academic staff also offers research and academic skills classes and workshops.

During second semester, students relocate to one of the 42 participating universities to follow courses of their own choice and to undertake thesis research. 


The majority of EMA graduates work with human rights organisations both at their headquarters and in field missions. Some graduates are also involved in human rights-related activities with their Ministries of Foreign Affairs or are seconded by them to work for international institutions. Others pursue further academic studies and a few are the representatives of EMA participating universities.


First Semester

About 70 academics from the participating universities and experts from international IGOs and NGOs contribute to the EMA teaching programme.

Second Semester

In their second semester destinations, students are supervised and supported by the EMA National Directors and other faculty members of the 42 participating universities. 

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 12 months

Start dates & application deadlines

More details

Deadline for non-EU and scholarship applicants: 15 February 2021

Deadline for EU self-funded applicants: 19 April 2021


  • First Semester in Venice, Italy (worth 50% of the total mark, equivalent to 30 ECTS credits)
  • Second Semester in one of the 42 participating universities (15% of the total mark, 9 ECTS credits)
  • Thesis – research and thesis submission at one of the participating universities, graduation in September/October in Venice, Italy (35% of the total mark, 21 ECTS credits)


On Campus

Academic requirements

We are not aware of any academic requirements for this programme.

Other requirements

General requirements

Candidates must meet the following admission requirements:

  • Hold a university degree of a high standard in a field relevant to human rights, including disciplines in Law, Social Sciences and Humanities, and must have a minimum of 180 ECTS (Bachelor/General Degree).
  • Have certified knowledge of English at least at level B2. Accepted certificates are IELTS (min. score 6), TOEFL (min. 80 for the IBT) and Cambridge exams (min. score 169-175), obtained no more than 3 years before the start of the programme.

Applicants completing the degree entry requirements subsequently to the application deadline are requested to provide a current transcript of exams. Eventual admission into the programme is conditional upon receipt of documentation of the completed degree (by 31 August).

Work experience

Applications will be assessed against the following selection criteria:

  • Academic ability and background (i.e. university final grade, relevance of the degree and thesis subject);
  • Relevant additional academic work, courses or publications
  • Relevant practical experience
  • Motivation

Tuition Fee

To alway see correct tuition fees
  • International

    5650 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 5650 EUR per year during 12 months.
  • National

    5650 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 5650 EUR per year during 12 months.

plus enrolment fee of €50

Living costs for Venice

600 - 950 EUR /month
Living costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


The Global Campus of Human Rights does not provide full scholarships. Only a very limited number of students may be granted modest financial support in the form of a partial contribution towards living expenses and/or a full or partial tuition waiver. Candidates may apply for financial assistance by 15 February 2021, by motivating their request in the application form. The Global Campus of Human Rights reserves the right to determine the amount of each contribution and the awarding criteria.

Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

Fresh content

Updated in the last 6 months

Check the official programme website for potential updates.

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European Master's in Human Rights and Democratisation
Global Campus of Human Rights


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