Developing leaders, leading development

The two-year Master in Public Administration in International Development (MPA/ID) Program is designed to prepare the next generation of leaders in international development. It is an economics-centered, multidisciplinary program, combining rigorous training in analytical and quantitative methods with an emphasis on policy and practice.

The MPA/ID Program offers unparalleled training for a professional career in development. The mix of theoretical rigor with a practical approach has proven to be a winning combination in the professional world. Our graduates hold influential policy and management positions in a range of international organizations, national governments, central and regional banks, nonprofit and research organizations, and private sector companies.

The right fit

The MPA/ID Program may be for you if you:

  • Demonstrate commitment to the economic, social, and political advancement of developing and transitional economy countries
  • Work in the development field, whether in government, central or regional banks, international development institutions, nonprofits, research organizations, or the private sector
  • Want to deepen your understanding of complex development problems and acquire the analytical tools to design and implement effective solutions
  • Have a strong academic record, including in economics and mathematics

Our program is known for its challenging, integrated curriculum, outstanding faculty members, bright, committed students, exciting professional internships, and successful alumni

Learn more about what we look for in applicants. 

    Coffee Hour Information Sessions

    This summer MPA/ID students and alumni will be hosting informal information sessions in a number of locations around the globe. These will serve as an opportunity for prospective students who live in locations that we do not often reach in our admissions travels to learn more about the MPA/ID Program and HKS in an informal, relaxed setting. 

    For the full list of HKS information sessions planned for this summer see HKS Admissions Events

    Below we have listed some upcoming MPA/ID information sessions. Check back in throughout the summer as other sessions will continue to be added:

    • Casablanca, Morocco on July 20 REGISTER
    • Tegucigalpa, Honduras on July 23 REGISTER
    • New Delhi, India on August 12 REGISTER
    MPA/IDs Address Macroeconomic Challenges in Ethiopia
    (From left to right): Apratim Gautam (’20), Ibrahim Hassen (’18), Prof. Ricardo Hausmann, Melesse Tashu (’07), Prof. Eduardo Levy-Yeyati, Tim Cheston (’14), Nikita Taniparti (’18)

    (From left to right): Apratim Gautam (’20), Ibrahim Hassen (’18), Prof. Ricardo Hausmann, Melesse Tashu (’07), Prof. Eduardo Levy-Yeyati, Tim Cheston (’14), Nikita Taniparti (’18)

    This summer a number of MPA/ID students, faculty and alumni gathered in Addis Ababa to begin a three year engagement between Harvard’s Center for International Development (CID) and the Ethiopian government to think through the country’s binding constraints to growth.  The group consisted of current students on their summer internship, recent alumni and faculty affiliated with the CID Growth Lab, as well as Melesse Tashu MPA/ID 2007 who has taken a leave from his position as Senior Economist at the International Monetary Fund to become a Senior Macroeconomic Advisor to the Prime Minister’s Office in Ethiopia.

    Professors Ricardo Hausmann and Eduardo Levy-Yeyati were on hand to talk about their experiences in thinking about macro constraints such as the lack of foreign reserves (i.e. dollars) that Ethiopia faces. Ibrahim Hassen MPA/ID 2018 put the group in touch with Melesse who lent his expertise within the government of Ethiopia. Apratim Gautam, who is completing his MPA/ID summer internship on the project, valued having an MPA/ID connection working within the government: “I knew we could trust him with a more relaxed conversation in which we tested our thinking and assumptions.”

    Sitting in the Prime Minister’s office with several generations of current students, and alumni from Ethiopia, Professor Hausmann was deeply satisfied, commenting “We’re seeing the fruits of our labors!”

    "Never before in history has the dream of eliminating global poverty been so attainable, yet seemed so elusive. We live in a world where the reach of technology and markets are global, and yet more than a billion men, women, and children live in abject poverty, devoid of their benefits. How can that possibly be? In an age of plenty, what deprives people of adequate food, shelter, clean water, education, good health, and enough income to live on with dignity? What can governments, international agencies, and nongovernmental organizations do to make the dream a reality? The study of international development is about finding answers to questions like these."
    - Dani Rodrik, Ford Foundation Professor of International Political Economy and MPA/ID Program faculty chair 2018-19