Global governance as a subject field entails an interdisciplinary examination of power and authority in the global arena and examines the variety of actors, institutions, ideas, rules, and processes that contribute to the management of global society, exploring their origins, their evolving roles, as well as their political, economic, social, environmental, and ethical consequences. In addition to considering international organizations and inter-state interactions, global governance gives critical focus to various non-state actors, formal and informal networks, and broader transnational, supranational, and sub-national realities of contemporary life that increasingly contribute to the establishment and functioning of global rules, norms and institutions.
The study of global governance is a rapidly growing interdisciplinary field of research where scholars and practitioners from various academic and professional backgrounds come together to focus on governance issues relating to fundamental problems in global affairs. In this field, policy-relevant research and teaching about problems of global governance go beyond the rigidities and formalities of established disciplinary boundaries to be effective. Global governance issues are sufficiently complex that an interdisciplinary approach to their study is necessary. Our Global governance issues are complex, which demands an interdisciplinary approach. This interdisciplinary program is designed to meet these needs.
The specific objectives of the MAGG are as follows:
- To provide graduates with knowledge that allows them to understand and to develop new analyses of the complexities and challenges of global governance through a combination of course work, a major research paper, and an internship experience.
- To cultivate an interdisciplinary learning environment that develops integrative knowledge of global governance issues from the disciplines of political science, anthropology, economics, environmental sciences, history, and sociology.
- To provide experiential learning in the work place through an internship working on global governance issues in the public or private sector, at a research institute, or for a non-governmental organization.
- To provide graduates with an understanding of global governance issues that prepares them for further scholarly work in this field at the PhD level, or for the growing range of careers in this area in nation-state governments, international organizations, the non-governmental sector, and the private sector.
Admission requirements for the MAGG include:
- Successful completion of an Honours Degree in Political Science, Economics, History or a related field (including anthropology, environmental, global studies or sociology undergraduate degrees) with an overall average of at least 78% in the final 20 courses.
- Successful completion of at least one introductory course in economics at the university level before commencing the program.
- Demonstration of sufficient academic and/or practical experience and personal suitability as evidenced by letters of reference and a personal statement of interest. Experienced professionals in the private or public sectors will be considered for admission, but additional course work may be required.
All applications must include the following documents (incomplete applications will not be considered):
- a complete online application;
- 3 letters of reference; at least two from academic sources;
- transcripts and degree certificates (where applicable) of all undergraduate and graduate work;
- a résumé of your academic and work experience; include a history of your publication and scholarly paper activity and any other information you feel will interest the admissions committee;
- a brief statement of your research interests that explains your reasons for pursuing graduate studies, your areas of interest, (maximum 500 words);
- a sample of your scholarly writing (no more than 25 pages in length);
- for international applicants, an official statement of your acceptable English-language test results;
- if you are a Permanent Resident, evidence of your status in Canada is required; you must provide a photocopy of your signed "Record of Landing" or photocopies of both sides of your Permanent Resident card.
- All applicants must pay the non-refundable application fee of $100 CAD per program.
The program typically admits 15-18 students per year. There is one intake of students per year, always in September. The program is not normally offered on a part-time basis. In exceptional circumstances, students may assume part-time status after their formal course work has been completed.
The MA program requirements include completion of 6 courses, an internship, the program seminar and a Master’s Research Paper (MRP). The MA Program in Global Governance is normally completed in 4 terms (see the exception below for Balsillie fellowship holders). Students normally take six courses during their first two terms, spend their third or fourth term as an intern, and concentrate during their third/fourth non-internship term on the completion of a MRP.
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Recipients of a CIGI Graduate Fellowship have the option of completing the degree in 3 terms by counting their internship placement at CIGI (over three terms) as the “internship” component of the degree. In this case, a student takes six courses during their first two terms and then concentrates on the completion of their MRP during the third term.
During the first two terms of study in the MA program, students are normally required to take six courses which must include GGOV 600: Globalization and Global Governance (core course), HIST 605: Global Governance in Historical Perspective (history component), economics component (ECON 637: Economic Analysis and Global Governance or equivalent) and a political science component as well as two electives. In addition, all students participate in the Program Seminar, which meets regularly throughout the first and second terms and includes visiting speakers, guest talks and discussions of the research plans of students for the Major Research Papers.
The MRP provides students with an opportunity to pursue a specific research topic of their choosing relating to the study of global governance. The minimum length is 40 double-spaced pages (~10,000 words) and the maximum is 60 double-spaced pages (~15,000 words). Students are encouraged to meet informally with faculty members early in their graduate studies to discuss possible topics for their MRP. Students will need to identify their supervisor and second reader on the registration form they submit in November. Both the supervisor and second reader must be satisfied with the MRP, and either can ask for minor or major corrections or reject the MRP outright. Upon its completion, the MRP is assigned a grade by the supervisor and second reader.
Tuition rates vary from year to year. For information about tuition rates, please consult the Finance Student Accounts website.
Students admitted to the program receive some form of financial assistance, and are eligible for a variety of scholarships. Internally, students are eligible to receive CIGI Graduate Fellowships valued at $15,000, as well as additional university-based scholarships and funding.
For a list of internal and external awards, consult the Scholarships page of the BSIA website.
All students are required to spend the equivalent of one academic term as an intern working on global governance issues in the public or private sector, at a research institute, or for a non-governmental organization. The work-term will normally take place in the third or fourth term of the program. Students receiving the CIGI Graduate Fellowship have the option of counting their internship work at CIGI over the year (which amounts to approximately 10 hours/week over three terms) as meeting the internship requirement for the program.
A written report (approximately 10 double-space pages in length) arising out of the internship experience will be required and will be evaluated by the Director of the Internship Program of the Global Governance Program on a pass-fail basis. This report is distinct from the MRP, but can build towards it.
For a listing of Internships placements from previous years, please consult the internships page of the BSIA website.
Note: We do not guarantee paid placements.
The CIGI Graduate Fellowship (CGF) is an award granted to select students of the Balsillie School of International Affairs (BSIA) enrolled in either the Master in International Public Policy (MIPP) or the Master of Arts in Global Governance (MAGG) programs. The CGF program complements the unique graduate studies experience at BSIA. It is designed to provide students an opportunity to gain mentorship and guidance from senior scholars and policy practitioners, as they advance their own policy research and writing skills. The CGF program benefits from the resident expertise of BSIA’s three partner institutions – University of Waterloo, Wilfrid Laurier University, and The Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) – which collectively have fostered an environment of critical thinking, advanced research and peer learning.
Under the program, clusters of three to four CIGI Graduate Fellows are selected to participate in research projects based at either CIGI or BSIA. Working under the direction of the project leader/mentor, each CIGI Graduate Fellow will be responsible for conducting intensive research on a sub-area of the project.
The CGF program requires students to engage in both independent and collective research by a cluster team and to prepare two original outputs. First, during the first two terms, each student will write an independent research paper, which provides the context or possible scenarios of a policy-related issue. Individual themes and initial drafts will be developed in consultation with the project leader, and the papers will be reviewed by cluster teammates. And second, during the final term, each cluster of students will jointly write a policy brief on the collective policy findings of their research.
At the end of the program, CIGI Graduate Fellows will be given an opportunity to present their policy briefs and the findings of their research to, and receive critical feedback from, policy experts with global experience. This symposium will be organized by CIGI, bringing in senior policy practitioners to comment on the students’ work.
The MAGG attracts students with a diverse set of interests and career goals and aspirations. Following graduation, a number of our students have stayed in academia, while others have found employment with non-governmental organizations, the private sector and governments. Explore some of our graduates' careers on our Graduates page.