Master of Human Rights and Democratisation

(Asia Pacific Regional Program)

This program is co-funded by the European Union.

The Master of Human Rights and Democratisation (Asia Pacific) (APMA – formerly known as the MHRD) is hosted at Mahidol University’s Institute of Human Rights and Peace Studies (IHRP). The APMA partnership has been running for seven years and has graduated over 140 students. The degree has contributed much to the capacity of emerging leaders in the Asia Pacific region who protect and promote human rights and democracy. The university partners are:

  • Ateneo de Manila Law School (the Philippines),
  • Universitas Gadjah Mada (Indonesia),
  • Kathmandu School of Law (Nepal),
  • The University of Colombo, Centre for the Study of Human Rights (Sri Lanka)

Outline of the Program:

Many of those coming into the degree will already be working in the field of human rights, democratisation or related sectors such as development, peace, humanitarian, democracy, and environment. It is anticipated that the research and advocacy skills, as well as the expanded knowledge base that students will acquire through the degree, will significantly assist graduates when working in the internationalized context of rights and democracy. Graduates will be qualified to work in policy, advocacy and research positions in non-governmental, governmental and inter-governmental organisations.

Program Structure

The APMA program is taught across two campuses. All students will study first semester at the IHRP, Mahidol University (Thailand). Second semester students will study at one of the four partner universities in Indonesia, Philippines, Sri Lanka, or Nepal.

First Semester-Mahidol University

The first semester at Mahidol University consists of four courses and runs from August till November 2017. The first semester curriculum consists of a foundational program, made up of four core units of study. These units are compulsory for all students and include the following:

  • HPRD 551 Human Rights Norms and Mechanisms Part 1
  • HPRD 541 Human Right and Democratisation Research
  • HPRD 542 Dynamics of Human Rights Violations
  • HPRD 543 Democratisation: Theory and Practice

Second Semester – Mahidol University

There is an intensive course at IHRP in January 2019, before students travel to the partner university for the second semester which runs from February to July 2019.

  • HPRD 544 Human Rights and Democratisation Intensive
  • HPRD 553 Applied Research in Human Rights and Democratisation

Second Semester- Regional Partner University

At the partner university students study two courses and undertake a research project. Scholarships students will be assigned to a partner for their second semester according to the best fit with their study preferences. Fee-paying students can select any of the partners for their second semester.

  • HPRD 552 Human Rights Norms and Mechanism Part 2
  • HPRD 546 Critical and Emerging Issues in the Asia Pacific
  • HPRD 698 Thesis (Dissertation or Applied Research Dissertation)

The research project takes two forms:

MA Dissertation: A Master’s level dissertation supervised by program academic staff

Action Research Dissertation: A research paper done in cooperation with an internship placement

Second Semester placement

Students will study the second semester at one of the four partner universities, the University of Colombo (Sri Lanka), Universitas Gadjah Mada (Indonesia), the Kathmandu School of Law (Nepal) and Ateneo de Manila University (the Philippines). The placement at the second semester will be made by the Selection Committee based on the following criteria:

  • Fee-paying students and non APMA scholarship students: will be assigned to their first preference, conditional on acceptance by the Partner university.
  • APMA Scholarship students: Applicants will note their preference in the application form. All efforts will be made to place the student in their top preferences. However, in order to ensure scholarships are evenly distributed to the partner universities, scholarship students may in some cases be assigned to a different partner than preferred .A condition of the scholarship is that students must study at the assigned partner university.
Course Fees

The program will cost approximately €6,000. Full details of the payment are available from the program secretary (contact:

Global Campus of Human Rights and Democratisation Programmes

The APMA is part of a network of human rights and democratisation Masters courses made up of over 100 universities around the world. This network, the Global Campus of Human Rights and Democratisation Programmes, is funded through the European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR) enabled by the European Commission. The APMA represents the Asia Pacific region in this programme of seven regional Masters taking place across five continents, details of these can be found at the EIUC webpage (


Scholarship Criteria

There will be approximately 20 scholarships available for applicants from the Asia Pacific region. Students must be a citizen of AND residing in any of the following countries.

Note: The country of citizenship and residence does not need to be the same.





Brunei Darussalam


Cook Islands

PRC China

Fiji Islands


Hong Kong SAR





DPR Korea

South Korea









New Caledonia

New Zealand


Norfolk Island



Papua New Guinea




Sri Lanka

Solomon Islands






Viet Nam

Scholarships will be awarded according to a competitive combination of at least two of the following selection criteria:

  • Regional representation
  • Demonstrated interest in and commitment to human rights and democratisation;
  • Strong academic background and/or research ability and/or relevant professional experience;
  • Inclusion and diversity of student body
  • Prospective contribution to the field of human rights and democratisation in the Asia Pacific region.
Admission Requirements and Process

Applicants must:

1. Have an undergraduate Bachelors degree (or equivalent from a recognized university)

2. Have high English language proficiency (at least a score of 500 for TOEFL or 6.0 for IELTS)

Click here for Application Information Sheet

How to Apply

Click here for Application Form. For APMA Program Details and Admission-Scholarship Application Kit: For any inquiries, please email contact:

The closing date for scholarship applications is on 20 May 2019
The closing date for non-scholarship applicants is on 20 May 2019
Application Address

Institute of Human Rights and Peace Studies,

Panyaphiphat Building,

Mahidol University, Salaya Campus,

999 Phuttamonthon 4 Rd, Nakhon Pathom

Thailand 73170.

Office Tel : (66) 2-441-0813-5

Fax : (66) 2-441-0872-3

Office Email