Archive for France

International Dual Degrees Explained

A while ago we posted an entry on the nuances of our dual degree programs with other Columbia schools.  In that entry I made mention of the fact that we also have partnerships with schools in other countries.  We refer to these dual degrees as international dual degrees.  The following entry is meant to provide information on these programs.  For information on the Columbia programs, please see this previous entry.


SIPA has partnered with a number of international institutions around the globe to offer a variety of dual degree programs.  Such programs allow students to study public policy from two different academic, cultural, and professional perspectives. After a two-year program of study, students are awarded both the relevant SIPA degree and a degree from our partner institution, thereby earning two masters degrees in the same amount of time it takes to obtain one.

SIPA currently offers dual degree programs with its Global Public Policy Network partners, which include Sciences Po Paris, the London School of Economics and Political Science, and the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the University of Singapore. We also have partnerships  with the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin, Fundação Getulio Vargas Escola de Administração de Empresas (FGV) in São Paulo, and the University of Tokyo Graduate School of Public Policy.

There are two types of Dual Degrees: Flexible Dual Degrees and Fixed-Track Dual Degrees. Each type has a specific application process.

In the case of the flexible dual degrees, students who are already admitted to either SIPA or a partner institution apply to a dual‐degree program during the course of their first year of study. If admitted, they study at the partner institution in their second year.  For example, you have been accepted to SIPA for a Fall 2011 start date and during your first year at SIPA, you decide to apply to the Dual Degree program with the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy (LKYSPP).  You apply to the program in Spring 2012 and upon acceptance, pursue your second year of studies in Singapore, beginning in Fall 2012. At the end of the two years, you receive a degree from both SIPA and the LKYSPP.

In the case of the fixed-track dual degree, students apply to both SIPA and our partner institution at the same time. Their application is reviewed by a joint-committee comprising of representatives of both schools.  If admitted, students begin their course of study at SIPA and proceed to the partner school in year two (with the exception of the Sciences Po MIA – students start in Paris and finish in New York).  For example, you apply to the SIPA MIA or MPA/LSE MPA program for a September 2011 start date. You submit your application in January 2011 and are notified of the decision in April. Upon admittance, you begin your studies in New York and finish in London during the 2012-2013 academic year. At the end of the two years, you receive a degree from both SIPA and the LSE.

Flexible Dual Degrees are offered for the following programs: the LSE MPA, Sciences Po MPA, LKY Master of Public Policy (MPP) and the Hertie School of Governance MPP. All programs are open to MIA and MPA students at SIPA.  This means that you can apply to the LSE MPA program in the spring of your first year at SIPA, whether you are enrolled in the MIA or MPA program. At the end of your two years, you will earn either an MIA or an MPA from SIPA and an MPA from LSE.

Fixed-track Dual Degrees are offered for the programs outlined above, as well as: the Sciences Po MIA, Fundação Getulio Vargas MPP or Master in International Management, and Tokyo University MPP. Unlike flexible dual degree programs, this is a fixed sequence of study. In other words, if you apply to the Sciences Po/SIPA MIA program, you will earn an MIA from Sciences Po and SIPA. You cannot switch into the MPA program for your second year SIPA.

Note that the language of instructions for all programs is English, except for the Sciences Po MIA, which is conducted in French and the Fundação Getulio Vargas MPP track, which holds instruction in Portuguese.

You may be wondering what the pros and cons of each track are. While the flexible track is more, well, flexible, you need to plan your course of study carefully to make sure that you will be able to fulfill the requirements at both schools. The fixed-track lays out clearly your course of study at both institutions. Admission rates vary depending on the program, fixed versus flexible, and the strength of the competition in any given year. Finally, regarding tuition: it’s paid to the institution you are enrolled in.

For more information on dual degrees, visit the GPPN website, or contact Tan Nguyen, Assistant Dean, Office of External Relations:  tn2102@

President Sarkozy Visit

The following was contributed by Anesa Diaz-Uda, a second-year MPA student.


Part of what has made my SIPA education so special is the access to world-renowned scholars as well as current and former global leaders.  Just this year I’ve attended several lectures with Jeffrey Sachs and Joseph Stiglitz, and heard President Kirchner of Argentina and the former Secretary-General of the UN, Kofi Annan.  Monday morning I was lucky enough to add President Nicolas Sarkozy to my list.  Below are some of the key points I took away:

Columbia University’s President Bollinger introduced President Sarkozy as a fresh leader, unafraid of controversy.  Sarkozy lived up to his reputation, immediately expressing his intent to not use a speech.  Rather, he would speak to us as candid friend – a very charismatic and focused one.


President Sarkozy first admitted his admiration for the US, and its unequaled power in the global order.  He concentrated on the idea that with power comes responsibility, namely a responsibility to listen and exchange ideas with others.  He made it clear that Europe wanted to be heard in such a setting.

The value of this exchange, for Sarkozy, was particularly potent in this moment of crisis.  He impressed upon all of us a 1) Need for new answers, 2) Need to renew the existing model, 3) Need to do all of this together.

As he put it, “This is why I am here in the States.”  He hoped to foster a free and open discussion at Columbia as well as at the White House the following day.

One of the main topics in this discussion was economic regulation.  Sarkozy felt that the financial market must be regulated.  It lacked structure, and without a mechanism that holds people accountable in good and bad times, another crisis would ensue.  He understood that as a Frenchman speaking in favor of regulation, many would suspect him of socialism or at the very least anti-free market sentiments.  This was not the case.  He spoke favorably of capitalism, however, he genuinely believed that only regulation would save a faltering free market economy.

He couldn’t defend a system where so many people who were not responsible for market failures got hurt, and would consider himself an accomplice should he not attempt to create a system to regulate the global economy.   He then cited examples such as the oil market, which is subject to much fluctuation, as an industry in need of some ground rules.  He genuinely believed that it was in the interest of all stakeholders, particularly producer-states and top consumers to set a targeted price for barrels of oil. He spoke harshly on the topic of speculative bubbles, but repeatedly said he thought that it was “well and proper” for businessmen and women who produce innovative products and services to make large profits – he was simply not pleased with the idea of people simply speculating on derivatives, for example, making immense sums of money.

Sarkozy also made it clear that he believed we need new metrics for understanding and measuring growth.  He spoke highly of Joseph Stiglitz’s work, and supported the idea that sustainable growth requires the measurement of new more qualitative concepts.  He also spoke of his hope to create a new international institution dedicated to monetary policy – similar to what we saw during and in the wake of WWII with the Bretton Woods System.

Sarkozy moved from his economic and financial evaluation, to the topic of new world governance.  He spoke candidly about the need for reform in the UN, particularly the Security Council.  He impressed upon us the need to think about the countries of tomorrow.  When referencing the G8, he said, “We can’t manage tomorrow’s conflicts alone.”

He spoke briefly about security, and compared the attacks in Moscow’s subway system to 9/11.  For Sarkozy, the fight against terrorism is everyone’s fight, and he pledged his support and military to the War in Afghanistan.

President Sarkozy ended his conversation again speaking of the value of listening and engaging the international community in this time of crisis, and spoke of his admiration of President Obama.  “We were proud of you when you elected Obama.”   He saw the US as a country making much progress.  He did, however, ask the American people to not lag behind the US President specifically with regard to financial and environmental regulation.

He then took questions.  Questions ranged from US healthcare reform to what a new UN Security Council would look like.  He was as lively and honest in his responses, once even citing his wife, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, who was in attendance and as expected, looked stunning.

World Leaders Forum – Nicolas Sarkozy

Each year SIPA students are able to interact with influential members of the policy community through the World Leaders Forum.  Prior to his visit to Washington, D.C. to meet with President Obama, the French President will be visiting Columbia.

The event will be broadcast live and links to video players are found on the forum Web site.  The event video will be cataloged on the forum multimedia web site where you can also find videos of past events.

President Nicolas Sarkozy of France

Date: March 29, 2010 from 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM
Location: Columbia University Morningside Campus Low Memorial Library, Rotunda
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APSIA Western Europe Graduate Fair Circuit

Next week the APSIA Western Europe Graduate School Circuit takes place, giving those living in or around Berlin, London, and Paris the opportunity to speak with admission representatives.

I hope to meet you if you are able to make it.  If you are going to attend, complete the free registration process and obtain the specific location of the events by clicking the links below.

Berlin: Monday, November 16th from 6:00 – 8:00 P.M. at the Hertie School of Governance

London:  Wednesday, November 18th from 6:00 – 8:00 P.M. at the Holiday Inn London Bloomsbury

Paris:  Thursday, November 19th from 5:00 – 8:00 P.M. at Sciences Po – Institut d’Etudes Politiques


"The most global public policy school, where an international community of students and faculty address world challenges."

—Merit E. Janow, Dean, SIPA, Professor of Practice, International and Economic Law and International Affairs

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