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About University

About Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland


  • Name: Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (IHEID)

  • Location: Geneva, Switzerland

  • Established: 1927 (as the Graduate Institute of International Studies; merged with the Graduate Institute of Development Studies in 2008)

  • Type: Postgraduate institution

  • Language of Instruction: Primarily English and French

Academic Programs

The Institute offers a variety of programs focusing on international relations and development studies. Key programs include:

  • Master's Programs:

    • Master in International Affairs (MIA)

    • Master in Development Studies (MDEV)

    • Specialized master's programs in fields like International Law, International History, International Economics, and Anthropology and Sociology of Development.

  • PhD Programs:

    • PhD in International Relations/Political Science

    • PhD in International Law

    • PhD in International History

    • PhD in International Economics

    • PhD in Anthropology and Sociology of Development

Research Centers and Programs

The Graduate Institute hosts several research centers and programs, including:

  • Centre on Conflict, Development, and Peacebuilding (CCDP)

  • Global Health Centre

  • Global Governance Centre

  • Albert Hirschman Centre on Democracy

  • Gender Centre

Notable Features

  • International Environment: The Institute is known for its diverse student body and faculty, representing numerous countries and providing a global perspective on international and development issues.

  • Location: Situated in Geneva, the Institute benefits from proximity to numerous international organizations, including the United Nations, the World Health Organization, and the International Committee of the Red Cross.

  • Double Degree Programs: Collaborates with other prestigious institutions around the world to offer double degree programs.


The Graduate Institute has a notable alumni network, with many graduates holding influential positions in international organizations, governments, NGOs, and academia.


The campus is modern and well-equipped, featuring state-of-the-art facilities including:

  • Maison de la Paix: The main campus building, housing classrooms, offices, and conference spaces.

  • Library: Extensive collections specializing in international relations and development studies.

  • Residences: Accommodation facilities for students.


Admission to the Graduate Institute is highly competitive. Applicants are typically required to have a strong academic background, proficiency in English and/or French, and relevant work or academic experience in their field of interest.

Partnerships and Collaborations

The Institute maintains numerous partnerships with international organizations, academic institutions, and research bodies, facilitating internships, exchanges, and collaborative research projects.

Universities in Switzerland

Course Programs at Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland

Master's Programs

  1. Master in International Affairs (MIA)

    • Duration: 2 years

    • Focus: Provides a comprehensive understanding of international relations, economics, law, and political science.

    • Specializations: Global Security, Conflict and Development, Global Health, Trade and International Finance, Environment and Sustainability.

  2. Master in Development Studies (MDEV)

    • Duration: 2 years

    • Focus: Emphasizes development economics, sociology, anthropology, and political science.

    • Specializations: Development Policies and Practices, Power and Conflict, Mobilities, Spaces and Cities.

  3. Master in International and Development Studies (MID)

    • Duration: 2 years

    • Focus: Offers a multidisciplinary approach with concentrations in Anthropology and Sociology, International Economics, International History, International Law, and Political Science/International Relations.

Specialized Master's Programs

  1. Master in International Law (LL.M.)

    • Duration: 1 year

    • Focus: Provides in-depth knowledge of public and private international law, humanitarian law, and human rights law.

  2. Master in International History (MA)

    • Duration: 2 years

    • Focus: Studies the historical dimensions of international relations, global political developments, and economic history.

  3. Master in International Economics (MA)

    • Duration: 2 years

    • Focus: Covers international trade, monetary economics, development economics, and econometrics.

  4. Master in Anthropology and Sociology of Development (MA)

    • Duration: 2 years

    • Focus: Examines social and cultural dimensions of development, migration, and globalization.

PhD Programs

  1. PhD in International Relations/Political Science

    • Duration: 4-5 years

    • Focus: Advanced research in global governance, security, and international political economy.

  2. PhD in International Law

    • Duration: 4-5 years

    • Focus: In-depth legal research in areas such as international human rights, humanitarian law, and global governance.

  3. PhD in International History

    • Duration: 4-5 years

    • Focus: Historical research on international relations, global conflicts, and economic history.

  4. PhD in International Economics

    • Duration: 4-5 years

    • Focus: Research in international trade, finance, development economics, and econometrics.

  5. PhD in Anthropology and Sociology of Development

    • Duration: 4-5 years

    • Focus: Sociocultural research on development, migration, urbanization, and social change.

Study in Switzerland

Masters Course Programs at Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland

Course Name


Tuition Fees Per Year (USD)

Master in International Affairs (MIA)

2 years


Master in Development Studies (MDEV)

2 years


Master in International and Development Studies (MID)

2 years


Master of Advanced Studies in Transitional Justice, Human Rights and the Rule of Law (MAS)

1 year


Master in International Law (LL.M.)

1 year


Master in International History (MA)

2 years


Master in International Economics (MA)

2 years


Master in Anthropology and Sociology of Development (MA)

2 years



MA (Master of Arts) in Switzerland

PhD/Doctorate Course Programs at Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland

Course Name


Tuition Fees Per Year (USD)

PhD in International Relations/Political Science

4-5 years


PhD in International Law

4-5 years


PhD in International History

4-5 years


PhD in International Economics

4-5 years


PhD in Anthropology and Sociology of Development

4-5 years


Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland for International Students


  • Eligibility: Bachelor's degree for Master's programs; relevant Master's degree for Ph.D. programs.

  • Language Requirements: Proficiency in English (TOEFL/IELTS) and sometimes French.

  • Application Materials: Academic transcripts, CV, motivation letter, letters of recommendation, and a research proposal for Ph.D. applicants.

Scholarships and Financial Aid

  • Need-based Scholarships: Available for international students based on financial need.

  • Excellence Scholarships: Merit-based scholarships for outstanding students.

  • External Funding: Various international organizations and foundations offer scholarships to study in Switzerland.

Research and Facilities

  • Research Centers: The institute hosts various research centers focusing on global issues.

  • Library: Extensive resources on international relations and development.

  • Partnerships: Collaborations with UN agencies, NGOs, and other academic institutions.

Student Life

  • Location Benefits: Proximity to numerous international organizations, such as the United Nations, provides unique opportunities for internships and networking.

  • Student Associations: Various student-led organizations and activities.

  • Cultural Diversity: A multicultural student body enhances the global learning environment.

Living in Geneva

  • Cost of Living: Geneva is known for its high cost of living, so budgeting is important.

  • Accommodation: University housing, private rentals, and shared accommodations are available.

  • Transportation: Efficient public transport system; student discounts available.

Admission Process of Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland

1. Choose Your Program

Decide which program you want to apply for:

  • Master’s Programs: International Affairs, Development Studies, International Law, International Economics, International History.

  • Ph.D. Programs: International Relations and Political Science, Development Economics, International History and Politics, International Law.

2. Check Eligibility Requirements

Ensure you meet the basic eligibility criteria:

  • For Master’s Programs: A recognized undergraduate degree (Bachelor’s or equivalent).

  • For Ph.D. Programs: A relevant Master’s degree.

3. Language Proficiency

  • English: Non-native English speakers must provide proof of proficiency (TOEFL, IELTS).

  • French: Some programs might require proficiency in French.

4. Prepare Your Application Materials

Gather the necessary documents for your application:

  • Academic Transcripts: From all post-secondary institutions attended.

  • Curriculum Vitae (CV): Detailing your academic and professional experience.

  • Motivation Letter: Explaining your interest in the program and how it aligns with your career goals.

  • Letters of Recommendation: Typically two, from academic or professional references.

  • Research Proposal: Required for Ph.D. applicants, outlining your intended research area.

  • Proof of Language Proficiency: TOEFL or IELTS scores for English, and possibly DALF/DELF for French.

5. Online Application

  • Complete the online application form available on the institute’s website.

  • Upload all required documents.

  • Pay the application fee (if applicable).

6. Application Deadlines

  • Master’s Programs: The deadline is usually in January for the fall intake.

  • Ph.D. Programs: Deadlines can vary but are generally similar to those for Master’s programs.

7. Application Review

  • The admissions committee reviews applications based on academic performance, professional experience, motivation, and alignment with the program.

  • Shortlisted candidates might be invited for an interview (in-person or online).

8. Admission Decision

  • Decisions are typically communicated a few months after the application deadline.

  • Accepted students will receive an offer letter with details on how to confirm their place.

9. Scholarships and Financial Aid

  • Apply for Scholarships: After receiving an admission offer, you can apply for need-based and merit-based scholarships.

  • External Funding: Explore scholarships offered by international organizations and foundations.

10. Visa and Accommodation

  • Visa: Non-EU/EEA students need a student visa. Start the application process early.

  • Accommodation: Apply for university housing or seek private rentals in Geneva.

11. Enrollment

  • Complete the enrollment process as specified in your offer letter.

  • Prepare for your move to Geneva and start of studies.

Intake And Eligibility of Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland


IHEID typically has one intake per academic year:

  • Application Deadline: Applications are usually due by January 15th for the upcoming academic year starting in September. Specific deadlines can vary slightly, so it's important to check the official website for the most current information.

Eligibility Requirements

1. Academic Qualifications

  • Master’s Programs: Applicants typically need a Bachelor's degree or its equivalent from a recognized university in a relevant field.

  • Ph.D. Programs: Applicants usually need a Master's degree or its equivalent in a relevant field.

2. Language Proficiency

  • English Proficiency: Since English is the primary language of instruction, non-native English speakers need to demonstrate proficiency through tests like TOEFL (minimum score of 100 iBT) or IELTS (minimum score of 7.0).

  • French Proficiency: Some programs may also require proficiency in French, given the bilingual nature of the institute and its location in Geneva.

3. Relevant Experience

  • Work Experience: While not always mandatory, relevant professional or research experience can strengthen an application, especially for Ph.D. candidates.

4. Application Materials

  • Completed Application Form: Available on the IHEID website.

  • Transcripts and Diplomas: From all previous academic institutions.

  • CV/Resume: Detailing academic and professional background.

  • Letters of Recommendation: Typically two or three, from academic or professional references.

  • Statement of Purpose: Explaining your academic and career goals, and how the program aligns with them.

  • Research Proposal: (For Ph.D. applicants) A detailed outline of your proposed research topic.

5. Additional Requirements

  • Interview: Some programs may require an interview as part of the selection process.

  • GRE/GMAT Scores: Certain programs might ask for GRE or GMAT scores, though this is less common.

Ranking & Rating of Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland as per QS World Ranking, US News

Ranking Organization


QS World Ranking

#51-100 (subject-specific)

US News

#267 (Best Global Universities)

Scholarship Available at Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland 

Scholarship Name


Institute Scholarships

Merit-based scholarships covering partial or full tuition and sometimes living expenses.

The Swiss Government Excellence Scholarships

Scholarships provided by the Swiss Confederation for international students.

Graduate Institute's Financial Aid

Need-based financial aid packages for students with demonstrated financial need.

The Geneva Academy Scholarships

Scholarships specifically for students in the LL.M. in International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights.

External Scholarships

Scholarships from external organizations such as Fulbright, Chevening, and others.

Mobility Grants

Funding for students participating in exchange programs or internships abroad.

Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland Campus & Accommodation Facilities



Cost (CHF)

Maison de la Paix Campus

Main campus housing classrooms, libraries, study areas, and administrative offices.



Extensive collection of resources in international and development studies.


Student Housing

Options including single rooms, studios, and shared apartments.

500 - 1,200 CHF per month

Student Residence "Grand Morillon"

Modern student residence with fully furnished rooms, shared kitchens, and common areas.

750 - 1,200 CHF per month

Cafeteria & Dining Services

On-campus dining options providing meals and snacks.

Pay-per-meal basis

Sports Facilities

Access to fitness centers and sports activities through University of Geneva partnerships.

Membership fees may apply

Study Areas & Common Rooms

Dedicated spaces for studying and socializing within the residences and campus buildings.


Internet & Utilities

High-speed internet and utility costs included in accommodation fees.

Included in accommodation fee

Laundry Facilities

On-site laundry rooms available for student use.


Students Life at Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland

Academic Environment

  • Rigorous Curriculum: The Institute is known for its challenging and interdisciplinary academic programs in international relations, development studies, economics, law, and political science.

  • Renowned Faculty: Students have the opportunity to learn from and engage with leading scholars and practitioners in their fields.

  • Research Opportunities: Numerous research centers and projects provide students with opportunities to participate in cutting-edge research.

Campus and Facilities

  • Maison de la Paix: The Institute’s main campus, Maison de la Paix, is a modern architectural complex that includes state-of-the-art classrooms, libraries, and meeting spaces.

  • Library: The Library of the Graduate Institute is one of the most comprehensive collections in international relations and development studies.

  • Study Spaces: There are numerous quiet study areas, computer labs, and group workspaces available.

Student Organizations and Activities

  • Student Association (GISA): The Graduate Institute Student Association organizes a variety of academic, cultural, and social events, providing a platform for student engagement and networking.

  • Conferences and Seminars: Regular conferences, workshops, and seminars on global issues are organized, often featuring high-profile speakers and experts.

  • Cultural and Social Events: The diverse student body often organizes cultural nights, film screenings, and social gatherings, promoting a sense of community and cultural exchange.

Career and Professional Development

  • Career Services: The Institute offers robust career services, including workshops, career fairs, and counseling to help students prepare for careers in international organizations, NGOs, academia, and the private sector.

  • Internships: Many students secure internships with international organizations based in Geneva, such as the United Nations, WHO, WTO, and various NGOs, providing practical experience and networking opportunities.

Living in Geneva

  • Accommodation: Students can find housing options in university residences or private apartments. The Institute provides assistance in finding suitable accommodation.

  • Cost of Living: Geneva is known for its high cost of living, but students often find ways to manage through budgeting and part-time work opportunities.

  • Transportation: The city has an efficient public transportation system, and students often receive discounted travel passes.

International Community

  • Diverse Student Body: With students from over 100 countries, the Institute offers a truly international environment, promoting cross-cultural understanding and collaboration.

  • Language: While English is the primary language of instruction, many students also take advantage of French language courses to better integrate into the local community.

Support Services

  • Health and Well-being: The Institute provides health services, counseling, and support for students’ well-being.

  • Academic Support: Students have access to writing centers, tutoring, and other academic support services to help them succeed in their studies.

Alumni Network

  • Global Network: Graduates of the Institute join a prestigious and active alumni network, which can be a valuable resource for career advancement and professional networking.

Surrounding Area

  • Natural Beauty: Geneva is located near the Alps and the Jura mountains, offering numerous outdoor activities such as hiking, skiing, and boating on Lake Geneva.

  • Cultural Life: The city boasts numerous museums, galleries, theaters, and cultural festivals, providing a rich cultural experience.

Placements in Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland

Key Aspects of Placements at IHEID:

  1. Career Services:

    • Career Advising: IHEID offers personalized career advising to help students with job search strategies, CV and cover letter writing, interview preparation, and networking skills.

    • Workshops and Events: Regular workshops and career events are organized, including employer presentations, career fairs, and networking events with alumni and professionals in various fields.

  2. Internships and Practical Experience:

    • Many programs at IHEID include opportunities for internships and practical experiences. These can be with international organizations, government agencies, NGOs, and private sector firms.

    • The institute's location in Geneva provides unparalleled access to major international institutions like the United Nations, World Trade Organization, International Red Cross, and numerous NGOs and multinational companies.

  3. Alumni Network:

    • IHEID has a strong and active alumni network. Graduates often go on to prominent positions in international organizations, academia, government, and the private sector.

    • The alumni network is a valuable resource for current students, providing mentorship, networking opportunities, and potential job leads.

  4. Job Placement:

    • Graduates of IHEID are highly sought after due to the institute's rigorous academic programs and strong emphasis on critical thinking, research, and practical skills.

    • Common career paths for graduates include positions in international organizations (e.g., UN, WTO, WHO), NGOs, government agencies, think tanks, academia, and multinational corporations.

Acceptance Rate of Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland

Factors Influencing Admissions

1. Academic Excellence: Strong academic performance in previous studies, particularly in relevant fields, is crucial. Most successful applicants have high GPAs and strong academic records.

2. Relevant Experience: Work or internship experience in international organizations, NGOs, government agencies, or relevant private sector roles can strengthen an application.

3. Language Proficiency: Proficiency in English is essential, and knowledge of French or other languages can be an advantage given the international nature of the institute.

4. Motivation and Fit: A clear motivation for studying at IHEID, as demonstrated through personal statements and letters of motivation, is important. Applicants should articulate how their goals align with the institute’s mission and programs.

5. Recommendations: Strong letters of recommendation from academic or professional references can significantly bolster an application.

Campus Location of Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland

Main Campus

Maison de la Paix

  • Address: Chemin Eugène-Rigot 2, 1202 Geneva, Switzerland

  • Description: The Maison de la Paix is the primary building of the Graduate Institute. It is a modern complex that houses most of the institute’s academic and administrative offices, classrooms, and research centers. The building’s name translates to "House of Peace," reflecting its mission to contribute to peace and international cooperation.

  • Facilities: The complex includes state-of-the-art classrooms, conference rooms, a library, and various student facilities. It is designed to foster interaction and collaboration among students, faculty, and visiting scholars.

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