IOB is a multidisciplinary academic institution where people of different opinions, religions and nationalities feel at home. It has several decades of experience in organising international training programmes in the field of development policy and management. IOB is part of the University of Antwerp and is located on the University’s City Campus.
Every year, the Institute is home to some 100 students of approximately thirty different nationalities and from diverse academic and professional backgrounds, which provides for an extraordinary multicultural and multidisciplinary learning environment. Our master’s programmes and international training courses are organised in English, but special facilities are offered to students from other linguistic backgrounds.
It is IOB’s aim to offer policy-oriented training that incorporates the latest social scientific insights with relevance to the development challenge. Students are expected to learn from each other’s experiences and from their exposure to living and working in a developed country. The focus lies on student-centred learning and the approach applied involves a mix of teaching methods (ex-cathedra lectures, individual and group assignments, discussions, student presentations, literature-based independent study, seminars, guest lectures, analysis of case studies, simulations, individual tutoring).
Study trip to paris
Our ideal classroom is composed of a mix of students from the South and the North. The target group consists mainly of mid-career development professionals from low-income and lower middle-income countries whose previous academic backgrounds and career records suggest that they will significantly profit from an advanced international training. They are strongly motivated to contribute, at their home institutions, to the identification, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of development policies and programmes. The target group in the North consists of individuals already pursuing or wishing to pursue a career in development, and with some field experience.
IOB offers three Master’s programmes, with a high degree of specialisation and a distinct focus: Development Evaluation and Management, Governance and Development, and Globalisation and Development. The three Master’s programmes are offered concurrently and take twelve months to complete, starting and ending mid-September. In a first three-month module, students are updated on development-related theories and research methods. The core of the programme runs from January to May, when students pursue individual tracks through two research-based modules, and on the basis of which they are subsequently required to write a policy research report (from June to September).
The Institute also organises stand-alone short training courses. One such course deals with the New Aid Approach; another examines the Political Economy of the Great Lakes Region. Further information about these International Training Programmes can be obtained from the IOB Admissions Office. Part of our educational programme can be taken as PhD courses.
IOB staff constitute the backbone of all training programmes, though experts from NGOs, government agencies, and outside research institutes are also called upon.
Research at IOB
, both theoretical or policy-oriented, is organised in four thematic groups
: Aid Policy (AP), Political Economy of the Great Lakes Region of Central Africa (PEGL), Poverty and Well-Being as a Local Institutional Process (PIP) and Impact of Globalisation (IG). In addition to serving as an organisational basis for research activities at the Institute, the thematic groups (TGs) also ensure that a link is retained between research and teaching.
We endeavour to make our teaching programmes relevant for development practitioners, and indeed regard this as one of the programmes’ distinguishing features. In order to achieve this aim, our staff, in addition to performing their academic and research duties, frequently engage in policy advisory work. In the past, research has been carried out for, among others, the Belgian Directorate General for Development Co-operation (DGDC), Belgian Technical Co-operation (BTC), the European Commission, the World Bank, UNIFEM, the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), as well as countless non-governmental organisations. The insight that such staff exposure provides is a major source of inspiration for the teaching programmes.
IOB also participates in various inter-university partnerships with institutes in developing countries, such as the Universidad Centro-Americana (Managua, Nicaragua), the Facultés Catholiques de Kinshasa (DR Congo), the Universities of Bukavu (DR Congo) and Ngozi (Burundi), and the University of Western Cape (South Africa).
The Institute is located on the University of Antwerp’s City Campus, close to the central railway station, and is easily accessible by public transport. The campus offers a broad range of facilities, including a student restaurant serving hot meals for approximately 3 Euros, a sports centre and computer rooms with Internet access. The library, which houses approximately 20,000 volumes covering all aspects of economic and political development, is also located on the City Campus. The library provides access to numerous databases and library networks.