M.Sc. and Ph.D.

The Graduate Program in Sustainable Development (PPGCDS) of the University of Brasília was created in December 1995, as a Doctoral Course in Environment and Development. It was focused on Environmental Policy and Management and research concentrated mostly om the Cerrado and Amazonian biomes. With the creation of the Master’s Degree, in 1998, the program adopted the name Sustainable Development. As of late 2016, 703 graduate degrees (196 Ph. D.s and 507 M. Sc.) were awarded by the PPGCDS.

The PPGCDS has three lines of research which contemplate the main aspects involved in the definition of its area of concentration:

i) Public Policies, Culture and Sustainability: includes the study of the set of activities aimed at the formulation, implementation and evaluation of policies converging towards sustainable development. It also encompasses the cultural dimension as an inseparable component of sustainability;

ii) Technology, Consumption and Sustainability: aims to study the relationship between the dimensions of science, technology and innovation and sustainability in the development process, considering also the impact of new production and consumption patterns on society and nature;

iii) Territory, Environment and Society: explores how societies shape territories and the environment and how activities and living conditions are affected by this process, at different scales and under their own modes of regulation.

The M. Sc. Program

The Master’s Program seeks to provide the initial training of researchers and professors, as well as managers and enforcers of public and private programs of sustainable development.

As part of the curriculum requirements for completing thei course, students must enroll successfully in courses corresponding to 24 credits. The credit load is fulfilled as follows: two mandatory courses, totaling 8 credits; elective subjects totaling at least 16 credits. The two mandatory courses are: 1) Foundations of Sustainable Development; 2) Thesis Seminar.

In addition to successfully attending the Seminar in which they prepare their thesis projects, students must complete all 24 credits in order to take their qualifying exam.

Both the Integration Seminar and the Thesis Seminar are taught by two professors, usually with different academic backgrounds. In addition to them, all disssertation and thesis supervisors actively participate in the design of the projects. The two disciplines offer methodological workshops, according to the needs identified by the professors.

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The Ph.D. Program

The Doctoral Program is designed to train high-level professionals in Sustainable Development, in an interdisciplinary mode, enabling them to act as independent researchers, undergraduate and graduate professors, and managers and enforcers of public and private sustainable development programs.

As part of the curricular requirements to complete the course, students must enroll successfully in courses corresponding to at least 30 credits. The credit load is fulfilled as follows: three mandatory courses, totaling 12 credits; elective subjects totaling at least 18 credits.

The mandatory classes are: 1) Environmental Socioeconomics; 2) Science and Sustainability Management; 3) Integration Seminar. In the seminar students dedicated themselves exclusively to the development of their dissertation projects. It is a requirement for their qualifying exam.

Students must complete 24 of the 30 credits before taking the qualifying exam, which must occur by the end of the fourth semester. Later on, the program requires a formal pre-defense of the dissertation, which has to be carried out at least 30 days earlier than the deadline for the submission of the final draft . The pre-defense is designed to help ensure the quality of the final version, which will be sent to external committee members; it has the additional role of expediting the final drafting and defense.

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