International Media, Advocacy, and Communications
The IMAC specialization provides a comprehensive introduction to media and public policy, with a special focus on development and advocacy. It is the only program at SIPA that looks at the effect that new technology has on development, government and the media. We offer courses on digital diplomacy, e-government, the regulatory and policy questions surrounding new technology and how to use digital tools for both communication and advocacy. Among other subjects, we examine the role that twitter, facebook and instagram play in bringing about social change, including the lessons from the Arab Spring and the use of microblogs in China. Our students consider the effect that new technology has on international affairs and government, and the policies and practices that can help new technologies promote development, human rights and social change.
The International Media, Advocacy and Communications specialization cuts across all disciplines and is essential for any SIPA grad who wants to communicate effectively about subjects such as development, human rights or government. Students who are interested in public affairs, journalism or advocacy find our courses help their careers. Our courses teach SIPA students how to navigate the world of mass communications so that they can become more effective advocates and policy makers. We also stress hands-on skills and teach Final Cut video editing software and offer courses that help our students write clearly and cogently on international affairs and public policy. Seasoned instructors teach our flagship course on communications and advocacy strategies.
Students who choose the media/communications specialization will be required to take three courses in this area, but may take more if their schedule permits. We offer courses on new media and development, advocacy and public affairs, writing on policy and writing on international affairs. Many of our students pursue careers in public affairs, in journalism and work for government and international organizations. Past graduates are employed by The Council on Foreign Relations, The Economist, Google, facebook, Human Rights Watch, UNICEF, UNDP, U.S. Department of State, and a number of governments.
Dual Degree with Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism
Students who are interested in a career in journalism and want to write on international affairs may want to explore the option of a dual degree with Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. This two-year degree combines the rigorous demands of SIPA’s MIA program with the world-class journalism education provided by Columbia’s School of Journalism. Students in the dual-degree program graduate with a strong grounding in the SIPA curriculum as well as the writing, reporting, and new media skills taught at the School of Journalism.
Entry into the dual-degree program requires applying to both SIPA and the Journalism School. Dual degree students have to fulfill the core requirements of both programs.