M.Sc. On Campus

Labour, Activism and Development

SOAS University of London

12 months
22840 GBP/year
13360 GBP/year
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


The MSc Labour, Activism and Development programme from SOAS University of London encourages students to examine critically the relationship between labour, capitalism, development and poverty. The programme is relevant to students with a strong background in the social sciences in their first degree as well as practitioners and activists from a wide spectrum of organisations and approaches.


The MSc Labour, Activism and Development programme from SOAS University of London investigates labour in the contemporary social and economic development of the Global South as well as established and emerging social movements of labour in local, national and international spaces. You will learn to identify and evaluate the relationship between collective agency, policy and vice-versa.

We work in a seminar/tutorial formats that encourage critical thinking and participation via an emphasis on the relationship between theory and practice. Programme lecturers are not just research active. We are also activists and have experience of participation in labour and social movements across the world - Latin America, Africa and Asia and Europe and have on-going contacts with such movements as well as with NGOs and international organisations. We are well-placed to work with you on applying a deep understanding of collective movements to the challenge of working in development, development-related organisations and beyond into education and corporate social responsibility at various levels and scales.

Students in the Labour, Activism and Development programme from SOAS University of London can draw on SOAS’s unique experience to specialise further in particular regions and topics. Regional expertise at SOAS allows students of MSc in Labour, Activism and Development to specialise in some of the most dynamic parts of the developing world. Students also benefit from the wide range of modules on offer, both within the department and across the School, allowing them to create individualised interdisciplinary programmes.

The programme’s emphasis on transferable analytical skills will be of great benefit to graduates who return to, or take up, professional careers in international organisations, government agencies and non-governmental organisations and movements.

The department has a Labour, Movements and Development research cluster which carries out research activities linked to labour, social movements and development. 

Career opportunities

An MSc in Labour, Activism and Development is a valuable experience that provides students with a body of work and a diverse range of skills that they can use to market themselves with when they graduate.

Specifically, Labour, Activism and Development degree from SOAS provides graduates with a portfolio of widely transferable skills sought by employers. These include analytical skills, the ability to think laterally and employ critical reasoning, and the ability to present materials and ideas effectively. Graduates are able to continue in the field of research including PhD research at SOAS or other academic institutions

Graduates have gone on to work for a wide range of different kinds of organisations, for instance International Labour Organisation, American University of Beirut, London Borough of Hackney, Urban Justice Centre New York, Public World, Human Dynamics, British Red Cross, the Just Enough Group, and Jyoti Fair Works.

Examples of roles taken up include Policy Officer, Research Officer, Union Organiser, Community Organiser, CEO, Digital and Communications Officer, Junior Technical Officer, Child Protection Social Worker, Analyst, Operations Manager, Photographer, Consultant.

Programme Structure

Courses include:

  • Labour, Activism and Development
  • Civil society, social movements and the development process
  • Political Economy of Development
  • Borders and Development
  • Cities and Development
  • Natural resources, development and change: putting critical analysis into practice

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 12 months
  • Part-time
    • 24 months

Start dates & application deadlines


180 alternative credits

120 taught credits (including core, compulsory and optional modules) and a 60 credit dissertation


On Campus

Academic requirements

GPA admission requirements GPA
Upper Second Class

Other requirements

General requirements

    • Applicants should have a first or good second class honours bachelors degree from a UK university, or international equivalent, in a subject appropriate to that of the programme to be followed. 
    • If an applicant does not have a bachelors degree in an appropriate field s/he may be required to complete a qualifying year or a one year diploma before entering the masters programme. 
    • Relevant work experience may also be taken into consideration. Individual courses may have specific entry requirements, so you are advised to consult the postgraduate prospectus for further information.

Tuition Fee

To alway see correct tuition fees
  • International

    22840 GBP/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 22840 GBP per year during 12 months.
  • National

    13360 GBP/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 13360 GBP per year during 12 months.

Part Time 2 Years:

  • UK: £6,680/year
  • Overseas: £11,420/year

Part Time 3 Years:

  • UK: £4,450/year
  • Overseas: £7,610/year

Living costs for London

1137 - 2157 GBP /month
Living costs

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


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 9 months

Check the official programme website for potential updates.

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Labour, Activism and Development
SOAS University of London


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