What distinguishes human geography from other social sciences is the study of social and cultural phenomena in terms of spatial or geographical disparities.
Human geographers examine disparities in relation to living conditions, opportunities and influence in society, and how this correlates with changes in society that benefit some places but disadvantage others. Moreover, we study how changes and processes at a local level affect the regional and global level, and vice versa.
In human geography, we also have a fundamental desire to understand the relationship between people and their surroundings, whether it is man-made environmental problems, or the emergence of neighbourhoods that appear to exclude certain groups of society.
The study programme is aimed at providing students with academic expertise in the human geographic academic and research field. This expertise is characterized by both an academic breadth and a research specialization.
The programme qualifies students for participation in research, analysis and development work, by emphasizing independent research work, critical reflection and research ethics awareness in relation to the development and use of knowledge.
Upon completing a master’s degree in human geography, candidates will have the following knowledge, skills and general competence as a foundation for working within the related academic and research field.
The candidate will have a thorough knowledge of theory, research findings and relevance to society, and be able to analyze and discuss key issues, within one or more of the following topics:
- Urban geography/urbanism: Towns and cities as a place to live and work, including topics such as urban planning, urban development, conflicts of interest, visions for towns and cities, sustainable urban development and disparities between neighbourhoods.
- Development geography: Global poverty and disparities, with particular emphasis on countries in the southern hemisphere.
- Political geography: Globalization, the state and politics, social movements, ethnic conflicts and conflict-solving.
- Economic geography: The reasons behind globalization, and opportunities for economic and social upgrading locally and regionally through participation in global value chains and global production networks, how investing in innovation and developing knowledge can help regions to strengthen their position; and how and why working conditions vary from place to place.
- Environment and society: Society’s reactions to local and global deterioration of the environment, particularly in connection with climate change.
The candidate will develop independent working methods and skills, and will be able to:
- conduct a self-defined piece of research in line with academic, methodological and ethical guidelines
- independently substantiate academic choices in research
- apply scientific methods to the analysis of practical problems and help solve problems
- analyze data and theory, and draw conclusions on correlations between these within the human geographic academic and research field
- apply a scientific mindset when dealing with research questions
- write to an academic standard of language
The candidate will develop an understanding for research work, and will be able to:
- communicate in connection with research questions with other experts and the general public, including both written and oral presentations
- show a critical approach to relevant knowledge within human geography, including their own academic knowledge and attitudes
- independently assess methodological, ethical and practical challenges in research work
- initiate and provide constructive input to professional development work