MPA in Development Practice (MPA-DP)

MPA-DP Curriculum

During the school year, students undertake coursework in a wide range of disciplines and sectors. This classroom education is supplemented by a three-month summer field placement. The program's core courses teach students the skills and professional knowledge needed to effectively address ongoing sustainable development challenges.

The points of credit system for the MPA-DP program:

Full course: 3 points

  • Minimum points for graduation: 54. If a student takes the minimum points required for graduation the proportion of those are core courses versus electives is roughly 50-50.
  • Maximum points: 72. If a student takes the maximum points allowed, the proportion of those are core courses versus electives is roughly 2:1

Glenn Denning, Professor of Professional Practice in International and Public Affairs; Director of the Master of Public Administration in Development Practice (MPA-DP)


Matthew Berg, Lecturer in International and Public Affairs (part-time)

Lawrence Birch, Adjunct Assistant Professor of International and Public Affairs

Stephen Carpenter, Adjunct Associate Professor of International and Public Affairs

André Corrêa d'Almeida, Adjunct Associate Professor of International and Public Affairs; MPA-DP Program Manager

Patricia DaviesAdjunct Associate Professor of International and Public Affairs

Karla Hoff, Visiting Professor

Radhika Iyengar, Adjunct Assistant Professor of International and Public Affairs

Anne NelsonAdjunct Associate Professor of International and Public Affairs

Mark Orrs, Visiting Assistant Professor (part-time)

Jeffrey Sachs, Quetelet Professor of Sustainable Development and Professor of Health Policy and Management

Lisa Sachs, Adjunct Assistant Professor of International and Public Affairs

Shiv Someshwar, Adjunct Associate Professor of International and Public Affairs

Joseph StiglitzUniversity Professor

Elinor Todd, Adjunct Associate Professor of International and Public Affairs

Isabelle Tsakok, Adjunct Professor of International and Public Affairs

Columbia University is a dynamic institution, attracting new faculty and introducing new courses every year. As a result, the curriculum may vary slightly from year to year. In some of the core areas, we require students to take a specific course. In others, we give students options among different course offerings that meet the core learning requirement. However, our commitment is to ensure that all students have access to courses that cover each of these core curriculum areas (24.5 points):

Core Requirements

Points
MPA-DP: Getting Started0
MPA-DP: Getting Started
Foundations of Sustainable Development3
Sustainable Development Practice
Economics (Completed during the first year)6
Select one of the following:
Microeconomics for International Public Affairs
and Macroeconomics for International Public Affairs
Microeconomic Analysis for International Public Affairs Course Video
and Macroeconomic Analysis for International Public Affairs
Statistics (Completed during the first year)3
Quantitative Analysis for International Public Affairs
Global Food Systems (Completed during the first year)3
Global Food Systems
Global Health Practice (Completed during the first year)3
Introduction to Global Health
Management for Development Professionals (Completed in second year)3
Management Training for Development Professionals
Development Practice Labs3
Development Practice Lab I
Development Practice Lab II
Infrastructure (Any semester)3
Students can choose an infrastructure course from a list of approved courses - dependent on semester offerings
Professional Development (Completed during the first year)0.5
Professional Development (PD) Career Conference
Summer Placement
Field Study for MPA-DP

The below focus areas are to be used for guidance in selecting courses and areas of study. Focus Areas are not formal designations (like MIA/MPA concentrations) or required, but rather a way of organizing elective options since MPA-DP does not have concentrations. Focus areas are thematic niches around which students may opt to develop specific expertise. Students can take any electives they want across any of those focus areas. Please refer to the requirements tab for completing your degree.

Agriculture, Food Security, and Nutrition - Focus Area

Points
Agriculture & Rural Systems
INAF U6735Issues in Rural Development3
INAF U8354Micro Small Enterprise Development3
PUAF U6195Transformation Through Sustained Agricultural and Rural Development: Policies and Institutions3
MDP Workshop (Selected Topics)3
Food Systems Management and Policy
INAF U6259Adaptation to Climate Change3
INAF U8910Food, Farming Famine: Struggles for Sustainability3
INAF U8912Technology, Innovation and Sustainable Goals1.5
MDP Workshop (Selected Topics)3
MDP Independent Study (Selected Topics)3
Nutrition
PUAF U6412Global Nutrition Science and Policy3
MDP Workshop (Selected Topics)3
MDP Independent Study (Selected Topics)3
Skills-Based Courses
INAF U8145Advanced Economic Development for International Affairs3
INAF U6604Applied Econometrics3
INAF U6115Cost Benefit Analysis for Developing Economies3
SDEV U6240Environmental Science for Sustainable Development3
ENVP U6275GIS for International Studies3
INAF U6116Infrastructure Cost Benefit Analysis3
PUAF U6217Operations Management3
INAF U6898Program Evaluation and Design3
INAF U8827Program Evaluation for Development Applications3
SIPA U8500Quantitative Methods in Program Evaluation and Policy Research3
INAF U6211Technology Solutions for Development Social Change3
Complementary Cross-register Courses
POPF P8646 Food and Nutrition in Complex Emergencies1.5
NUTR M8220Food and Nutrition: a Public Health Perspective3
SUMA K5030 Hungry City Workshop3
EESC W4404 Regional Dynamics, Climate, and Climate Impacts
SUMA K4240 Sustainable Agriculture
ENVB N0381Sustainable Agriculture

Business, Finance, and Social Enterprise - Focus Area

Points
Finance
SIPA U6200Accounting for International Public Affairs3
INAF U6301Corporate Finance3
INAF U8350Finance for the World's Poorest3
ENVP U6400Financing the Green Economy: Markets, Business, Politics3
SIPA U6310Nonprofit Financial Management3
Markets and Investment
INAF U8454Investment Strategies in Developing Countries3
INAF U6134Raising Capital for Social Venture1.5
INAF U6032Investing in Emerging Markets
Social Enterprise and Entrepreneurship
INAF U6053Creating a Social Enterprise3
INAF U8354Micro Small Enterprise Development3
Skills-Based Courses
SIPA U6200Accounting for International Public Affairs3
SIPA U4011Advanced Techniques in Excel0
INAF U6016Cost-Benefit Analysis3
PUAF U6033Decision Models Management3
EMPA U6510Managing Social and Economic Risk: Comparative Public Policy Approaches3
INAF U6004Programming for Entrepreneurs1.5
EMPA U9225Public Management Innovation3
Complementary Cross-register Courses
MGMT B8613 Entrepreneurial Selling1.5
MGMT B8519 Launching New Ventures3
MGMT B8608 New Product Development1.5
COMS W4460Principles of Innovation and Entrepreneurship3
MGMT B8559 Social Entrepreneurship: Global Perspective
MGMT B8527 Social Venture Incubation1.5

Disaster, Emergencies, and Crisis Management - Focus Area

Points
Conflict and Resolution
INAF U8559Building Peace After Conflict1.5
INAF U8886Conflict Assessment1
INAF U6391Conflict Resolution3
INAF U6563Containing Conflict: A Comparative Historical Perspective3
PUAF U6801Negotiation Conflict Resolution3
INAF U6551Why We Fail: Lessons in Conflict Resolution and Atrocity Prevention3
Disaster and Crisis Management
INAF U6190Complex Emergencies: Root Causes to Rebuilding3
INAF U6141Humanitarian Response Simulation1
INAF U8690Managing Humanitarian Emergencies3
INAF U8882Practicum on Education in Emergencies1.5
INAF U6211Technology Solutions for Development Social Change3
Humanitarian Affairs
INAF U4090Accountability in Humanitarian Assistance1
INAF U8910Food, Farming Famine: Struggles for Sustainability3
INAF U6174Forced Migration: Concepts and Policy3
INAF U6154Humanitarian Communications3
INAF U6497Humanitarian Crisis in the Eastern DRC1
INAF U6490International Humanitarian Law and International Criminal Law1.5
INAF U6173Migration and Human Development3
INAF U6495Politics Practice of Humanitarian Assistance in the New Millennium1.5
INAF U8166Rethinking Human Rights and Humanitarism3
Skills-Based Courses
ENVP U6275GIS for International Studies3
PUAF U6217Operations Management3
INAF U6198Technology for International Crisis Response and Good Governance 1.5
MDP Workshop (Selected Topics)3
Complementary Cross-register Courses
POPF P8625Communicable Disease in Complex Emergencies1.5
SUMA K4330 Disaster Risk Management and Sustainable Urban Resilience3
SDEV U6260Disasters and Development3
POPF P8648 Food and Nutrition in Complex Emergencies1.5
POPF P8639 Gender-based Violence in Complex Emergencies1.5
MGMT B8510 Managerial Negotations
LAW L8115Negotiation Workshop3
POPF P8620Protection of Children in Disaster War1.5
POPF P8673Refugee Reproductive Health1.5
LAW L9383International Humanitarian Law2
POPF P8651Water and Sanitation in Complex Emergencies1.5

Education - Focus Area

Systems & Policy
ITSF 4094 Educational Planning in International Educational Development
Curriculum, Program Development, and Management
EDPA 4013 Education Policy and Manage Instruction
C&T 4032 Gender, Difference, and Curriculum
ITSF 4055 Resource Allocation in Education
Social Issues in Education
ITSF 5003 Communication and Culture
EDPE 4051 Education and Economic Development
Health & Special Needs Education
ITSF 4603 Human and Social Dimensions of Peace
HBSS 5111 Planning Health Education Programs
INAF U8882Practicum on Education in Emergencies
Skills-Based Courses
PUAF U6460Benchmarking Skills for Process Organizational Improvement
ITSF 4092 Qualitative Research and Evaluation in International Education
Complementary Courses
INAF U8201Innovations in K-12 Education

Environment and Energy - Focus Area

Points
Economics and Finance
INAF U6079Clean Energy Financial Innovation1.5
ENVP U6400Financing the Green Economy: Markets, Business, Politics3
INAF U6040International Energy Project Finance3
INAF U6135Renewable Energy Markets and Policy3
Policy and Management
ENVP U6228Corporate Sustainability and the Role of Government in Advancing Environmental Social Performance3
INAF U6242Energy Policy3
INAF U6061Global Energy Policy3
INAF U4420Oil, Rights and Development1
Environmental Sciences
SDEV U6240Environmental Science for Sustainable Development3
Energy
INAF U6057Electricity Markets3
INAF U6042Energy Business Economic Development3
INAF U6429Energy Industry in the BRICS3
REGN U6149Energy, Corporate Responsibility Human Rights3
PUAF U6190Extractive Industries and Sustainable Development3
Climate Change
INAF U6259Adaptation to Climate Change3
INAF U8537Climate Change Policy3
Skills-Based Courses
INAF U6016Cost-Benefit Analysis3
PUAF U6033Decision Models Management3
ENVP U6275GIS for International Studies3
INAF U6326Renewable Energy Project Finance Modeling1.5
Complementary Cross-register Courses
EAEE E4009 GIS for Resource, Environmental, and Infrastructure Management3
EHS P8304 Public Health Impacts of Climate Change3
SUMA K4169 Sustainability Metrics3
SUMA K5230 The Earth's Climate System

Gender, Human Rights, and Social Inclusion - Focus Area

Points
Gender
INAF U6381Gender Armed Conflict: Contemporary Theory and Practice for Advocates 3
INAF U6373Gender Policy Practicum1.5
INAF U6143Gender, Globalization and Human Rights3
INAF U8785Gender, Politics, and Development3
INAF U6371Globalizing Reproduction: Care, Childbearing and Gender in International Perspective1.5
INAF U6374Mainstreaming Gender in Global Affairs3
Human Rights
INAF U8892Business and Human Rights Clinic I3
INAF U8893Business and Human Rights Clinic II3
INAF U6041Corporations and Human Rights3
REGN U6149Energy, Corporate Responsibility Human Rights3
INAF U6405Human Rights Development Policy3
REGN U6545Human Rights in the Western Balkans1.5
INAF U4759Human Rights Practicum1
INAF U6751International Human Rights Law3
INAF U4420Oil, Rights and Development1
INAF U8166Rethinking Human Rights and Humanitarism3
INAF U6765The European Union, the United States and International Human Rights1.5
INAF U8189The Politics of History and Reconciliation3
Social Inclusion
INAF U8350Finance for the World's Poorest3
INAF U6303Financial Inclusion: Models and Products to Enhance Financial Access for the Poor3
Skills-Based Courses
INAF U8180Human Rights Skills and Advocacy3
INAF U6891Impact Evaluations in Practice1.5
INAF U8183Tools for Advocacy3
Complementary Cross-register Courses
HRTS GR5300Economic and Social Rights in Policy and Practice3
POPF P8676 Epidemiological Methods for Measuring Human Rights Abuses
POPF P8607 Health and Human Rights Advocacy
HRTS GU4915Human Rights and Urban Public Space3
HRTS GU49504
GRTS GR5404 Human Rights of Women
HRTS GR6800International Human Rights Law3
HRTS GU4215NGOs and the Human Rights Movement: Strategies, Successes and Challenges3
HRTS GU4930International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights4
HRTS GR6020Introduction to Human Rights3
POPF P8683Psychosocial and Mental Health Issues in Forced Migration1.5
HRTS GR5400 Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, and Human Rights
HRTS GU4270 Social Media and Human Rights: Actors, Advocacy and Analytics3
HRTS GU4500SOCIO-ECONOMIC RIGHTS3
HRTS GU4900UN HUMAN RIGHTS BODIES: IMPACT – REFORM – ADVOCACY4

Governance, Partnerships, and Civic Participation - Focus Area

Points
Governance
INAF U8537Climate Change Policy3
INAF U8095Corporate Governance Public Policy3
PUAF U6190Extractive Industries and Sustainable Development3
INAF U6359Global Economic Governance3
INAF U6226Leadership and Innovative Policy Making3
PUAF U6032Leading and Sustaining Change: Frameworks, Tools and Skills1.5
PUAF U6195Transformation Through Sustained Agricultural and Rural Development: Policies and Institutions3
Partnerships
INAF U6051Infrastructure Investment and Development1.5
INAF U6226Leadership and Innovative Policy Making3
PUAF U6028Public-Private Partnerships to Foster Effective, Sustainable and Scalable Nonprofits1.5
Skills-Based Courses
INAF U6001Colloquium on Technology and the Future of Governance and Public Policy1
INAF U6301Corporate Finance3
INAF U6198Technology for International Crisis Response and Good Governance 1.5
INAF U8183Tools for Advocacy3
Complementary Cross-register Courses
L6546 Global Constitutionalism3

Health - Focus Area

Points
Systems and Policy
MAIL P8659 Fundamentals of Health Care Systems in Developing Countries1.5
MAIL P8725 Global AIDS Policy3
MAIL P8539 Health and Health Systems in low Income Countries3
MAIL P8675 Health Systems Approach to Maternal Mortality1.5
Program Planning and Management
POPF P8654 Malaria Program Planning
MAIL P8614 Management of Health Care Organizations3
MAIL P8561 Managing Public Health Non-Profits1.5
POPF P8640 Methods in Program Evaluation3
POPF P8601 Public Health Program Planning3
POPF P8670 Training for Public Health Progams3
Research, Evaluation, and Assessment
SOSC P8771 Community-Based Participatory Reseach in Public Health3
SOSC P8705 Evaluation of Health Programs3
POPF P8642 Health Assessment, Program Design, and Program Assessment1.5
POPF P8640 Methods in Program Evaluation
SOSC P8785Qualitative Research Methods3
Epidemiology and Disease
POPF P8676 Epidemiological Methods for Measuring Human Rights Abuses
EPID P8438 Epidemiology II: Design and Conduct of Observational Epidemiology
MAIL P8465 Epidemiology of HIV/AIDS3
MAIL P8469 Epidemiology of Malaria3
MAIL P6400 Principles of Epidemiology3
Population and Family Health
MAIL P8672 Beyond Choice: Emerging Complexities in Reproductive Health1.5
MAIL P8671 Globalization of Motherhood3
MAIL P8643 Maternal and Child Health in International Primary Health Care3
MAIL P8691 Public Health Advocacy for Reproductive Health1.5
MAIL P8673 Reproductive Health in Crisis Situations1.5
POPF P8561 Water & Sanitation in Complex Emergencies
Nutrition
POPF P8648Food and Nutrition in Complex Emergencies1.5
NUTR M8220Food and Nutrition: a Public Health Perspective3
HBSV 5013 Strategies for Nutrition Education and Health Behavior Change
Social Issues in Health
MAIL P8685 Migration and Health: Global and Local Perspectives1.5
MAIL P8748 Social and Economic Determinants of Health3
Environmental Health
MAIL P6300 Environmental Health Sciences3
EHS P8651 Public Health Impacts of Climate Change3
MAIL P9320 Water and Infectious Disease3
POPF P8651Water and Sanitation in Complex Emergencies1.5
EHS 8329 Water, Sanitation, and Human Health3
Ethics, Human Rights, and Emergency
POPF P6670 Accountability and Ethics in Humanitarian Assistance
POPFP8625 Communicable Diseases in Complex Emergencies
POPF P8648Food and Nutrition in Complex Emergencies1.5
POPF P8639Gender-based Violence in Complex Emergencies1.5
POPF P8626 Planning Child Survival Programs
POPF P8620Protection of Children in Disaster War1.5
POPF P8683Psychosocial and Mental Health Issues in Forced Migration1.5
POPF P8687Public Health and Humanitarian Action3
SOSC P8793Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response3
POPF P8651Water and Sanitation in Complex Emergencies1.5
Skills-Based Courses
INAF U6016Cost-Benefit Analysis3
BIST P6103Introduction to Biostatistics3
HBSS 5112 Social Marketing and Health Communication

ICT and Data for Development - Focus Area

Points
Technology and Innovation
INAF U6226Leadership and Innovative Policy Making3
INAF U6002Principles of Innovation Entrepreneurship (PIE)3
INAF U6515Technology and the Future of Governance and Public Policy1.5
INAF U6211Technology Solutions for Development Social Change3
INAF U8912Technology, Innovation and Sustainable Goals1.5
MDP Workshop (Selected Topics)
Data Management
INAF U6006Computing in Context3
SIPA Capstone
New Media & Communications
SOSC P8795 New Media and Health
Skills-Based Courses
ENVP U6275GIS for International Studies3
PUAF U6217Operations Management3
INAF U6004Programming for Entrepreneurs1.5
SIPA U4022Research, Design Prototype a Mobile App0
INAF U6198Technology for International Crisis Response and Good Governance 1.5
INAF U8183Tools for Advocacy3
Complementary Cross-register Courses
QMSS G4071 Advanced GIS & Spatial Analysis
DROM B8125 Digital Literacy for Decision Makers1.5
POPF P8718 Health Communication: Media Strategies and Global Innovation

Infrastructure - Focus Area

Points
Built Infrastructure
PUAF U6190Extractive Industries and Sustainable Development3
ENVP U6112Urban Ecology2
Energy Infrastructure
INAF U6057Electricity Markets3
INAF U6429Energy Industry in the BRICS3
REGN U6149Energy, Corporate Responsibility Human Rights3
PUAF U6190Extractive Industries and Sustainable Development3
INAF U6135Renewable Energy Markets and Policy3
Infrastructure Planning
INAF U6186Community Economic Development: Origins, Policy and Practice3
PUAF U6195Transformation Through Sustained Agricultural and Rural Development: Policies and Institutions3
Infrastructure Investment & Financing
SIPA U6320Budgeting and Financial Management for Government3
INAF U8689Global Financial Services in the 21st Century3
INAF U6131Impact Investing: Venture Capital Strategies3
INAF U6051Infrastructure Investment and Development1.5
INAF U8454Investment Strategies in Developing Countries3
INAF U8912Technology, Innovation and Sustainable Goals1.5
Skills-Based Courses
INAF U6016Cost-Benefit Analysis3
INAF U6115Cost Benefit Analysis for Developing Economies3
PUAF U6033Decision Models Management3
INAF U8778Distributed Energy Economics, Technology, and Policy3
INAF U6066Energy and Power Financing Markets3
INAF U6042Energy Business Economic Development3
INAF U6242Energy Policy3
ENVP U6275GIS for International Studies3
INAF U6154Humanitarian Communications3
INAF U6141Humanitarian Response Simulation1
INAF U6116Infrastructure Cost Benefit Analysis3
INAF U6040International Energy Project Finance3
INAF U6212New Media in Development Communication3
INAF U4420Oil, Rights and Development1
INAF U6002Principles of Innovation Entrepreneurship (PIE)3
INAF U6004Programming for Entrepreneurs1.5
INAF U6517Tech, Policy, and Culture in the Developing World: Living on the Edge3
INAF U6198Technology for International Crisis Response and Good Governance 1.5
INAF U6211Technology Solutions for Development Social Change3
INAF U6120Tools and Craft of Multi-Platform Storytelling3
INAF U8217Tools and Principles for Managing in the Information Economy and the Media3
Complementary Cross-register Courses
PLA 6232 Advanced GIS 3
POPF P8625Communicable Disease in Complex Emergencies1.5
SUMA K4330 Disaster Risk Management and Sustainable Urban Resilience
EESC BC3019Energy Resources3
SDEV U6240Environmental Science for Sustainable Development3
QMSS GR4070GIS Spatial Analysis4
SOSC P8718 Health Communication: Media Strategies and Global Innovation
PLAN A4579Introduction to Environmental Planning3
FINC B8767 Investing in Social Ventures3
PLAN A6108Land Use Planning3
CIEN E4137Managing Civil Infrastructure Systems3
HPMN P8535Organization and Delivery of Population Based Public Health Services3
PLAN A4010 Planning for Climate Change in Urban Energy Systems
SUMA K41303
CIEE E4163Sustainable Water Treatment and Reuse3
CIEN E4010Transportation engineering3
POPF P8651Water and Sanitation in Complex Emergencies1.5

Sustainable Cities - Focus Area

Points
Energy
INAF U6057Electricity Markets3
INAF U6135Renewable Energy Markets and Policy3
Environment
ENVP U6228Corporate Sustainability and the Role of Government in Advancing Environmental Social Performance3
ENVP U6235Environmental Finance3
Urban Infrastructure & Planning
INAF U6051Infrastructure Investment and Development1.5
ENVP U6112Urban Ecology2
Urban and Social Policy
INAF U6186Community Economic Development: Origins, Policy and Practice3
INAF U8778Distributed Energy Economics, Technology, and Policy3
PUAF U8250Governing the Twenty First Century City3
PUAF U6427Technology, Innovation and Economic Development in Cities1.5
ENVP U6239The Politics and Policy of Urban Sustainability3
Skills-Based Courses
SIPA U6320Budgeting and Financial Management for Government3
INAF U6016Cost-Benefit Analysis3
PUAF U6033Decision Models Management3
SIPA U6005Effective Management in the Public Service Course Video3
SIPA U4020Introduction to Infographics and Data Visualization0
PUAF U6217Operations Management3
Complementary Cross-register Courses
PLA 6232 Advanced GIS 3
SUMA K4330 Disaster Risk Management and Sustainable Urban Resilience
ARPL 4814 Hacking the Urban Experience3
SUMA K4030 Hungry City Workshop
PLAN A6108Land Use Planning3
PLA 4010 Planning for Climate Change in Urban Ecosystems3
PLA 4387 Public Private Partnerships, Privatization, and New City Government3
SUMA K4235 The Science of Urban Ecology