International Development

Creating change in international development requires understanding how ideas, global forces, national priorities, technical knowledge, and local concerns intersect. Solutions to development challenges demand adapting to diverse and evolving contexts. Many public and private sector actors—international, national, and local—play a role. They each bring different perspectives and resources to the table. To successfully navigate this landscape, professionals need strong analytical skills as well as innovative ideas and pragmatic flexibility.

At NYU Wagner, we provide the expertise needed to frame and assess development approaches that thoughtfully balance theory and practice. The international perspective cuts across our educational programs: students can choose an international specialization in our public and nonprofit management, health, and urban planning degrees. You’ll learn to envision and execute creative, effective, and sustainable responses to tough challenges. And you’ll leave our program with an interdisciplinary skill set that incorporates cutting-edge conceptual thinking, strong analytical techniques, institutional knowledge, and concrete management skills.

Our alumni understand development theory and techniques, and are also sensitive to factors on the ground that shape how they can create change. They know how to promote greater well-being in ways that respect the priorities and enhance the capacity of the countries and communities they serve. They can work in diverse environments, interpret politics, and seek compromises that allow progress. Collectively, these skills enable them to craft and implement development policies and programs with meaningful and long-lasting impact.

Supporting Public Sector Reform in Developing Countries

Professor Paul Smoke reviews key issues and evidence on the collaboration-contestation debate and considers how to think about this contentious issue in a rapidly evolving international relations landscape.

Student Worked in an iPhone Factory in China to See How Workers Were Treated

NYU Wagner student Dejian (Ken) Zeng (MPA 2017) spent his summer working undercover at an iPhone factory. Now he vows to hold violators of human rights accountable and advocate for workers.

Student Worked in an iPhone Factory in China to See How Workers Were Treated

NYU Wagner student Dejian (Ken) Zeng (MPA 2017) spent his summer working undercover at an iPhone factory. Now he vows to hold violators of human rights accountable and advocate for workers.