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MSc in Humanitarian Programme Management

Program duration
15 months (4 months at Bioforce, 4 months at GEM, 5 months field assignment at least) + Applied Research Project
Degree level
MSc (90ECTS credits). Awarded by Bioforce & GEM, accredited by the Conférence des Grandes Ecoles.
Entry requirements
Master level (240 ECTS credits) or special dispensation according to your profile and professional experience to your profile and professional experience
Full program fees
€ 11,000

This program is partially delivered at the Bioforce, Vénissieux (69).

The MSc in Humanitarian Programme Management aims at training managers for the humanitarian and development sector (NGO, non-profit or charitable organisations, foundations, etc.). It leads to a variety of positions in the area of humanitarian operations, implying coordination and management. 

A Humanitarian Programme can be defined as a set of activities planned and undertaken by an Aid organisation, directly or by mean of partnerships with other organisations, in a specific geographical area, over a specific timespan, in pursuit of specific objectives to address identified humanitarian needs. To undertake the activities (often organised in a set of related projects), human, material and financial resources are required, as is the analysis of the program’s environment and surrounding actors.

Many Aid organisations face the challenge of recruiting and retaining skilled managers in order to ensure continuous, consistent and effective management of their programs. This training program has been developed to answer both organisation and individual needs: to empower potential and current humanitarian managers to develop their technical, analytical and personal skills.

The partnership between Bioforce and Grenoble Ecole de Management has enabled the creation of a substantial management training program for the humanitarian and development sector, offering trainees the academic qualification and specific expertise they seek. This academic expertise is completed by a strong involvement of professionals from the humanitarian and development sector in the training delivery.

Skills Acquired:

    • Use the organisational and methodological tools and techniques to assess, plan, organise, monitor and report on both the program’s activities and the optimal use of assigned material and financial resources.
    • Support your team (through motivation and development), create, and maintain relationships and dynamics with a variety of stakeholders, to ensure the achievement of results in a challenging and changing environment.

Please note that Bioforce and GEM assume the responsibility to inform students of any changes to the content detailed below.*

Programme Content*

  • Opening sessions | 14h 
    Induction | 18h
    Managing Programs and Projects | 101h
    Managing People and Organisations | 85h
    Managing Finance and Funding | 85h
    Managing Safety, Security and Logistics| 36h
    Workshop Applied Reaserch Project – Orientation | 6h
    Field Exercise | 45h
    Career Advice | 14h
    Closing Session | 3,5h

  • Global Business Challenge | 24h
    Strategy and Business Model | 24h
    Governance and Performance of Organisations | 30h
    Global Disruptive Trends and Geopolitical Future | 24h
    Global Marketing and New Trends | 15h
    Leadership and responsible management | 15h
    Company Transformation | 18h
    Enhance Your Skills Profile | 12h
    Preparation for ARP/GM | 15h
    Workshop Cross-sector partnerships | 3h
    Workshop Preparation for Grand-Mémoire/Thesis | 15h

  • Objectives / Learning Outcomes

    To work as a team during the whole training period to sort out a humanitarian and/or development management issue. 

    Students are invited to investigate a pressing issue or a topic that is subject to debate in the humanitarian and development sector. This applied research has to translate into a written report in English and an oral presentation in front of a jury composed by the tutor and the partner Bioforce Institute.

    This project will require three assessed components:

    • Group Assessment 40%: To write a dissertation in English (20,000 – 25,000 words including bibliography, excluding appendices) which may remain confidential; it is possible to write a summary in a foreign language if required. Students have to submit the dissertation to the tutor at least 15 days before the oral presentation. The date of the oral presentation is to be set in accordance with the tutor, and shall take place during the week of 8 November 2021 latest. Marks are due for the 15th of November 2021.
    • Individual Assessment 20%: A 2000 word reflective of the Project experience that highlights transferable utility of the results and recommendations.
    • Individual Assessment 30%: To hold the oral presentation in English to the examination board.

    Expected results

    • A specific humanitarian and/or development management issue is defined
    • A bibliographical research is consolidated
    • Concrete proposals and outlooks are drawn up and a critical analysis is provided
    • Relevant recommendations are made

    The definition of the issue to be researched has to be validated by both Bioforce and GEM. A specific schedule with deadlines will be communicated by Bioforce.
    Rigor in diagnostic, analysis and facts interpretations, as well as recommendations will be required.
    This work aims to support humanitarian organisations in their development and functioning. In this way, we expect students to be creative (while being realist) and to practice benchmarks. This research work is neither an operational mission nor a counseling one. The report presented is not an internship report either.

    NOTE for GEM students: exemption of Final Management Project:
    The MSc’s applied research report replaces the Final Management Project

Pedagogy

The pedagogic approach to the program is underpinned through four progressive teaching to learning and application stages: Explanation and Demonstration in the teaching phase followed by Application and Confirmation in the activities stage.
Formal and interactive face to face classroom sessions with academic and practitioner specialists deliver explanations and demonstrations of key knowledge areas. For each hour of class-times, students are required to extend those knowledge areas through exercises and tasks that apply and confirm formally taught knowledge areas for a further two hours of individual study.
Pedagogic activities and methods include field simulations, serious games, group and individual research projects, case studies, group and individual essays, reports and reflectives.

Evaluation

Evaluation is concluded through a combination of Continuous Assessments, which include written and verbal production and Formal Examinations.
Activities such as Simulations and Serious Games are assessed through observation and assessed results. Students are also evaluated on their Applied Research Projects (Dissertations) and completion of a 5 month Applied Field Experience, the 5 month internship experience that concludes the program.

After the Study Period 

  • In Humanitarian or Development Sector

    Objectives / Learning Outcomes

    To reinforce students’ autonomy and to further develop their skills as humanitarian programme managers in the humanitarian and development sector.

    Students have to do an internship, after their study period, for 20 weeks at least (for instance in a NGO). The presentation of the report corresponding to this internship, to a board of examiners, must be done before mid-November.

    The assignment terms of reference are to be submitted to Bioforce in order to be validated. As a second step, GEM will give the final validation.

    GEM is in charge of all administrative issues regarding the assignment.

    The evaluation process for the assignment is the following:

    • A written report including:
      • a context (region, country, organization, programme, …)  presentation,
        a description and analysis of the objectives and results obtained,
        an analysis of the key challenges faced during the assignment,
        an analysis of the impact of the training period on their professional capacities as a humanitarian programme manager
    • An oral presentation in front of a jury

    The final mark will be a global mark including the written report and the oral presentation.

Assessment Process

  • Assessment process in Bioforce

    The assessment process includes the following exams:

    • An individual written exam for the “Framework of Humanitarian Aid” module. This exam may consist of theoretical questions related to the module’s learning outcomes. The student has to obtain a minimum mark of 10 out of 20 to successfully complete the module.
    • An individual written exam for the “Managing people and organizations” module. This exam may consist of theoretical questions, exercises or a case study related to the module’s learning outcomes. The student has to obtain a minimum mark of 10 out of 20 to successfully complete the module.
    • An individual written exam for the “Managing programmes and projects” module. This exam may consist of theoretical questions, exercises or a case study related to the module’s learning outcomes. The student has to obtain a minimum mark of 10 out of 20 to successfully complete the module.
    • An individual written exam for the “Managing finance and funding” module. This exam may consist of theoretical questions, exercises or a case study related to the module’s learning outcomes. The student has to obtain a minimum mark of 10 out of 20 to successfully complete the module.
    • An individual written exam for the “Training of Trainers” module. This exam will consist of theoretical questions related to the module’s learning outcomes. The student has to obtain a minimum mark of 10 out of 20 to successfully complete the module.

    Assessment process in GEM

    It is a two-stage process:

    • For each module, a continuous assessment is managed by a permanent professor from GEM.
    • For some modules, an additional exam is organised.

    To pass, the student has to obtain a minimum mark of 10 out of 20. Each module’s responsible defines the distribution of continuous assessment and exam.

    Conditions of graduation

    The diploma is delivered to the students:

    • Having obtained a minimum of 10 out of 20 in all exams;
    • Having produced and presented orally two reports demonstrating analytical and deductive skills (one related to the Applied Research project and the other related to the assignment/internship).

Qualification

Master of Science in Humanitarian Program Management awarded by the Bioforce and Grenoble Ecole de Management, accredited by the Conférence des Grandes Ecoles. 

The MSc in Humanitarian Programme Management aims at training managers for the humanitarian and development sector (NGO, non-profit or charitable organisations, foundations, etc.). It leads to a variety of positions in the area of humanitarian operations, implying coordination and management. Entry positions can be found as Reporting Officer, MEAL Officer (in charge of Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning), Coordinator or Programme Assistant or Grant Manager for more junior profiles. Middle management positions include Project Officer, Programme Manager, and Field Officer. And the highest positions are Programme Coordinator, Head of mission or Country Director, according to the specifics of each organisation.

To participate to the MSc Humanitarian Program Management, the prerequisites are the following:

  • Master 1 level or Bachelor's degree (four years of higher education after baccalauréat – 240 ECTS credits) for applicants justifying at least 6 months of professional experience as a project coordinator, administrator or logistician in international solidarity
  • By special dispensation, for applicants justifying an outstanding work experience (at least 5 years).
  • have an English language proficiency level of B2 (according to European language levels - Self Assessment Grid).
  • Have a profesional project in programme management (Programme coordinator, Logistics coordinator…)

Please note that these prerequisites provide a base for any validation of the application form. The final decision lies with the Coordinators of the training program.

Please follow the Bioforce application process

*The maximum number of participants for this training programme session is 20. The Bioforce and Grenoble Ecole de Management reserve the right to cancel the training programme in case of an insufficient number of participants (in which case, the persons registered will be fully reimbursed).

Updated on 04 April 2022 at 11h02 am