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Masters in environmental management


International Environment and Disaster Management (IEDM) research field comes under the Graduate School of Global Environmental Studies (GSGES) of Kyoto University.

The school offers two courses, master in environmental management and doctorate in environmental management and environmental studies. In the graduate school, IEDM research field targets to reduce the gap between knowledge and practice through proactive field-level, community-based project implementation. The target areas are mainly developing countries in Asia, which have the highest population growth, and high vulnerability, due to different types of natural and man-made disasters. The focus of this research field is to learn lessons from the field experiences through effective environment and disaster related project management. Disaster issues are directly related to environmental degradation, and global climate change.

The key of environment and disaster management is the end-user's (community and people) participation. Added to this, is education and learning through formal/non-formal education, and community/ family interactions. Working closely with the governments, NGO/NPO, United Nations, bilateral and multilateral development agencies and regional bodies, this research field is developing a unique process-oriented participatory approach of environment and disaster management through direct involvement and ownership of the community.

In order to foster outstanding environmental management professionals, students are required to participate in internship study. Based on the practical experience gained outside of the university, the student presents an innovative master's thesis and gains professional skills. After completing the master's degree, the student may continue on to the doctoral course in order to obtain advanced professional skills, or may choose to work for national or local government organizations, international organizations, the environmental control departments of industries, environment-related industries, environment-related NGOs, etc.

1. Curriculum Structure

The core requirements of the Master of Environmental Management Course are courses in the theoretical foundations of global environmental studies (global environment laws and policy, global environmental economics, global resources and ecosystem management, environmental ethics and environment-related education). The student studies environmental management fundamentals, theories, and attends seminars corresponding to the student's area of interest. The student also completes an internship lasting approximately five months, and then submits a master's thesis. Through the environmental management seminars, the student participates in fieldwork, observes activities of local governments, NGOs and industries, and obtains an understanding of the nature and culture of Japan, all of which serve to instil the student with the fundamentals needed for work at the international level.

2. Internship Study

In the Environmental Management Course, we aim to train internationally active specialists with advanced knowledge and problem-solving skills in order to resolve global and regional environmental issues, including those in the area of disaster prevention. Therefore, in keeping with the value we place on practical skills, we have incorporated an internship system as a compulsory part of the curriculum. Through individual education based on practical experience outside of the classroom, we aim at the acquisition of competence in coping with global environmental issues.
We have made arrangements with domestic and foreign environmental issue-related research organizations to serve as hosts for internship training. For example, we have arrangements with governmental research institutes, private research organizations, foreign universities, and international organizations such as the United Nations and international NGOs. We have arranged for the period of training in each organization to be approximately five months for the Master's Course and approximately one year for the Doctoral Program. During these periods, each student individually carries out their training and strives to cultivate practical skills.

3. System of Course Accreditation

According to the distribution of acquired credits, students enrolled in the Master's Course in Environmental Management may receive certification of completion for one or two Areas of Specialization from among the following three courses: the Environmental Policy Course, the Environmental Systems Management Course, and the Environmental Science Course. Under these circumstances, the course administrators will judge the criteria for completion based on the student's application, and will issue a certificate of course completion if these criteria have been satisfied.

4. Progress Toward the Degree

First year:
- Course study and field training, drafting of internship study plan, internship study.

Second year:
- Submission and review of master's thesis, Master's Degree in Global Environmental Studies.

Admission Requirement

Applicants are screened based on the student's ability in English, a written essay on a selected theme, and an oral interview related to the details of the student's study in his or her faculty, as well as an oral interview related to the suitability of the student and the student's motivation. The Master's Course also utilizes a framework for considering persons who have already had practical work experience.



Geographical coverage



Two years


The Graduate School of Global Environmental Studies
Yoshida-Honmachi, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto, 606-8501, JAPAN

Tel: +81-75-753-9167
Fax: +81-75-753-9187

Last updated

06 May 2010

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  • Type University programme
  • Level Masters
  • Location(s) Japan (Kyoto)
  • Language English

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