During the last two decades, the world has witnessed a multitude of violent conflicts that have affected people all over the globe. Millions of people have been killed and many more have been forced to flee because of war. Societies have been disrupted and economies have come to a standstill. Armed conflicts continue to threaten the lives, livelihood, and future of millions of people. The Master’s programme in Conflict Studies and Human Rights focuses on these contemporary conflicts and on associated human rights issues.
Current realities have forced the international community to address contemporary conflicts with a combination of military, humanitarian, political, economic and development-related measures. So far, however, the record of conflict management has been mixed. Notwithstanding incidental successes, there have been several less successful attempts and even outright failures.
This highlights the need to better understand the nature of contemporary conflict, and to ground this understanding in empirical research and theoretical explanations. Apart from a better understanding of conflict per se, there is also a lack of trained personnel in this rapidly growing professional field. It is against this backdrop that Utrecht University offers a one-year selective international Masters programme in Conflict Studies and Human Rights.