Do you want to understand the role of Mexico in the cocaine trade, why a Dutch multinational dumps waste on an African country, or how human smugglers operate in war zones? Are you curious about phenomena such as Internet fraud, food criminality or mobile banditry? Old and new forms of global crime are rapidly expanding, as are the means to control it. The Netherlands serves both as a major crossroad in the illegal flow of goods, people and services and as a key host for international organisations such as Europol, Greenpeace and the International Criminal Court. Drug trafficking, human trafficking, international terrorism, corruption, environmental harm, financial and corporate crime and conflicts over natural resources all have global dimensions. Tackling these issues requires modern instruments that transcend national boundaries.

The MA in Global Criminology is a one-year Master’s programme that equips students with the knowledge, skills, and understanding required to work with local and global crime issues, crime policies and crime control strategies. The programme offers a multidisciplinary, critical and comparative perspective in criminology, open for students with a BA degree in law, criminology, social sciences, or any other related social discipline such as economy, history or media studies, to name a few.

    Developing essential skills

    During this programme, you’ll study key issues such as organised and corporate crime, police surveillance, (cyber)security policies or the relation between ethnicity and crime. You will also develop essential skills that will benefit you in both your professional and personal life. You will be able, among other things, to:

    • develop good insight into the causes and consequences of local and global crime;
    • analyse the behaviour of offenders from different disciplines and perspectives;
    • critically assess and evaluate criminal policies and the criminal justice system;
    • understand the cultural aspects of criminal phenomena;
    • conduct independent criminological research using qualitative research methods and connect the results with criminological theories;
    • present research results to an audience of both specialists and non-specialists.

    There is a growing demand for qualified researchers, legal practitioners and policy makers who can address these and comparable issues. Are you a multidisciplinary expert or criminologist who wants to make a significant contribution to the field? Are you someone who wants to work in the field of law and social reform – or any sector dealing with growing forms of local and global crime control? Do you want to be part of a Master’s programme with students from different continents? Then the MA in Global Criminology at Utrecht University is the right choice for you!

    Distinctive education

    The MA in Global Criminology is an English-taught programme that consists of small-scale, interactive, and intensive courses. During the course of your studies, you will learn a wide range of qualitative research methods, including ethnography, open interviews, visual and digital methods. This Master's differs in many respects from comparable programmes offered by other Dutch universities. The latter are often taught in Dutch, admit large groups of students, focus on single issues, or are dominated by mainstream approaches and quantitative research methods. In contrast, our Master’s programme offers you:

    • a small-scale programme with intensive personal contact between staff and students; 
    • a broader scope than that of single-issue master’s programmes (e.g. on international crimes or conflict studies); 
    • a critical view on global crime issues and dominant criminological approaches; 
    • a strong focus on the cultural dimensions of crime;
    • international staff with strong expertise in organised crime, crimes of the powerful, green and cultural criminology, digital security and qualitative research methods; 
    • training in various research methods with a strong emphasis on qualitative research techniques, including ethnography, interviews, and visual and online methods; 
    • a focus on the specific role of the Netherlands in the fields of drugs (and drug policies), human rights (international courts and tribunals), and illicit trade; 
    • a wide range of opportunities to conduct research or to participate in internships abroad; 
    • staff that maintain a large network of international contacts, particularly in Latin America and South and Eastern Europe; and
    • excursions, study trips, and expert guest lecturers with a strong international orientation.

    I have been teaching Criminology in the Netherlands for the last 20 years, and I find the MA at Utrecht the most critical, innovative and internationally oriented of its kind.

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    The perfect location

    Utrecht is more than just a well-established classical university: it is a vibrant town where Dutch history, a cosmopolitan population, and an active student network meet. Every year, students from all over the world come to Utrecht and have the experience of a lifetime. Why not join them!

    Key facts

    Language of instruction: 
    Mode of study: 
    Study duration: 
    1 year
    Tuition fees: 
    Dutch and other EU/EEA students (statutory fee, full-time) 2024-2025: € 2,530

    Non-EU/EEA students (institutional fee) 2024-2025: € 20,043

    More information about fees
    Croho code: 
    Accredited by the NVAO
    Law, Economics and Governance 
    Graduate school: 
    School of Law
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