Students tackle real-world issues with World Bank and UN in new joint supervision scheme

Leading experts from the World Bank and several United Nations agencies have joined SOAS University of London academics in the Department of Economics to provide joint supervision to postgraduate economics students. 

The World Bank, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, the International Labour Organization, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development and the International Trade Centre of the UN/WTO are taking part in this new scheme. 

This collaboration revolutionises the way master’s dissertations and postgraduate research projects are approached by offering guidance from leading experts from international organisations.  

Students pursuing an MSc Development Economics, MSc Economics, or MSc Economic Policy at SOAS are presented a unique opportunity to delve into some of the most urgent economic questions facing our world today.  

Collaborating with international experts offers students invaluable interdisciplinary skills...

This hands-on approach not only enhances the academic experience by linking theory with practice but also allows students to tackle real-world problems through a multifaceted lens.  

Head of the Department of Economics Dr Satoshi Miyamura said:  

“Collaborating with international experts offers students invaluable interdisciplinary skills, critical problem-solving perspectives, and access to cutting-edge economic research and innovative methodologies.”  

Two architects of this initiative underscore key benefits. Dr Miguel Niño-Zarazúa, Director of Learning and Teaching said: 

“This not only benefits their dissertation work but also provides a gateway to potential career opportunities within these prestigious organisations. The professional connections made during this time are likely to serve them well beyond their academic pursuits.” 

Professor Antonio Andreoni, Convenor for Research and Knowledge Exchange in the College of Development, Economics and Finance, added: 

“The partnership represents a novel approach that combines academic excellence with practical application to enrich the learning and research journey of students and prepare them for their careers in economics and beyond.” 

Students participating in co-supervision scheme will have the chance to explore a variety of topics, from poverty reduction strategies in Africa with guidance from World Bank economists to social protection and labour market policies in the MENA region with support from ILO experts, and drivers of sustainable structural transformation in Asia-Pacific and Africa with UNIDO, UNCTAD and ITC specialists.  

This scheme is one of the strategic initiatives that the SOAS Department of Economics is advancing as part of its mission to be an agent for transformative change in the real world.