Migration, Culture and Global Health

MSc ( 1 year Full-time / 2 years Part-time )


This recently re-developed MSc in Migration, Culture and Global Health Policy is a unique and dynamic degree that covers the inter-connections between migration and health and responds to contemporary global challenges and critical events from across the world. While 'migration' and 'health' are often studied as separate areas of enquiry, graduates from this degree will be equipped with specialist 'migration-health skills' that will enable them to be competitive for employment in the fields of migration, global health as well as development more broadly.  

The degree is delivered as part of a larger course of study on Global Public Health which draws considerably from the disciplines of medicine, social and medical anthropology, migration studies, refugee studies, transcultural psychiatry, law, politics and geography. It offers a distinct transdisciplinary approach that synthesises links between the social and health sciences.

Teaching is grounded in the empirical domains of population mobility, migrants’ access to healthcare, social care, their legal and political conditions (including citizenship), health policy and migration policy and how these are mediated by their gender, religion and other structures. The health and wellbeing of migrant workers and those forcibly displaced by conflict, development and environmental disasters are among the key phenomena examined. Another key feature is an emphasis on equity, rights and the social determinants of health. Student learning is inspired by a team of academics who draw on their considerable research, practice and policy experiences related to diverse migration and/or health contexts.

The programme is housed by the Global Public Health Unit of the Centre for Primary Care and Public Health. Teaching is also offered through collaboration with the Centre for Psychiatry and Wolfson Institute of Preventative Medicine, the School of Geography, the Department of Law, and the School of Business & Management. These collaborations expand the range of specialist modules that are available to students on migration and/or health-related topics.

We offer three different modes of study – full-time and part-time MSc options, as well a PG Cert option – giving students choice and flexibility in matching this with their existing workloads and commitments.

Why study with us?

The Centre for Global Public Health provides a stimulating and challenging learning environment with its strong orientation towards equity, rights and social justice. The learning environment propels students to question prevailing paradigms, develop critical thinking and learn how to apply these skills beyond the academy.

The Unit’s teaching is grounded in established relations with the NHS, local authorities, third-sector organisations, intergovernmental agencies, and government agencies in the UK and beyond. Teaching links local issues with national and global experiences through the Unit’s connections with key inter-governmental organisations and NGOs that are working to promote the health and wellbeing of migrants and their families.

As part of Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry, we are placed within one of the top five ranked UK medical schools in the fields of medicine. Queen Mary University of London is part of the Russel Group and is one of the UK’s leading research-focused universities. The diversity of our student body reflects our location in Whitechapel and the East End – one of the most creative and culturally diverse areas of London.

Programme Faculty

Dr Anuj Kapilashrami

Programme Director & Senior Lecturer in Gender & Global Health Policy

Anuj Kapilashrami is Senior Lecturer in Global Health Policy with an interdisciplinary background in Sociology and Public health. Her work lies at the intersections of health politics and development praxis, with particular interest in their interface with gender, human rights and social justice. She has longstanding research interest and experience that spreads over twenty years in both the academia and the development sector in South Asia and the UK. Her research writings and publications span areas of gender, health policy, migration and intersectional health inequalities and structural determinants of health and gender violence. She has led knowledge exchange and capacity building initiatives in South Asia, Central Asia and the UK and is currently leading MigrationHealth South Asia network. She is currently involved in research projects on migration and health examining low-income migrants in India (ESRC-ICSSR funded project), and has done research with South Asian diaspora and immigrants in Scotland (British Academy/ Leverhulme), and transit migrants in the Balkans.

She is Gender & Rights advisor for the Department of Reproductive Health and Research (RHR) in the World Health Organisation; Senior Research Associate, Global Health Governance Programme, Usher Institute, University of Edinburgh; Senior Visiting Fellow, UN University – Institute for International Global Health, Malaysia; Associate Fellow, African Centre for Migration & Society, University of Witwatersrand.


Dr Adele Galipo

Lecture & Module lead

Dr Adele Galipo is a social anthropologist working in the field of migration with an expertise in ‘return’. She has researched at the Centre on Migration, Policy and Society (COMPAS) at University of Oxford, the Department of Social Science at UCL and the Department of Anthropology and Sociology at The Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva. Dr. Galipo has several years of fieldwork experience working with migrants in East Africa and across Europe. She is the author of Return Migration and Nation Building in Africa. Reframing the Somali Diaspora (Routledge) which recasts the idea of diaspora return and transnational ethnography in a more political light, showing how these returnees are both subject to and generative of important political conditions that are transforming their societies of origin.

Dr. Galipo is leading teaching in migration, culture and health. She is particularly interested in public health as a political field of action, involving complex forms of collaboration among governments, International Organisations and NGOs.


Professor David McCoy

David McCoy is a Professor at the Centre for Primary Care and Public Health at Queen Mary University, London and head of Public Health Intelligence for Inner North West London. David graduated from Southampton University medical school and worked as a clinician in the UK for two and a half years. He then spent ten years in South Africa, first working in a rural government hospital in South Africa for two and half years, and subsequently in the field of public health and health systems development. He was policy research fellow at the Child Health Unit of the University of Cape Town, and then worked for Health Systems Trust, a non-government organisation established to support the post-apartheid transformation of South Africa’s health care system. On returning to the UK, he completed his formal training in public health medicine. He then worked as a research fellow at University College London, followed by a stint as Director of Public Health in Hammersmith and Fulham. He has an M.Phil in Maternal and Child Health from the University of Cape Town and a doctorate from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.


Dr Kevin Deane

Lecturer in Global Public Health

Kevin Deane is a Lecturer in Global Public Health. He has a background in international development and politcial economy. His research interests focus on the social determinants and political economy of health, primarily with an application to the HIV epidemic in Eastern and Southern Africa. He has published on a number of issues related to HIV, such as internal economic population mobility and sexual behaviour, the benefits and costs of migration in the context of HIV, gender and transactional sex, the relationship between wealth/poverty and HIV, and how employers respond to the epidemic. He also has an interest in qualitative research methods, and in particular methods related to conducting fieldwork in low-income settings.


Dr Jonathan Kennedy

Lecturer in Global Public Health

Jonathan Kennedy’s research uses a variety of qualitative and quantitative methods – including in-depth interviews, comparative historical methods and statistical analysis – in a question-driven process. Broadly speaking, his research can be divided into two substantive strands. The first introduces methods and theories from political economy and political sociology to analyse the political, social and economic determinants of public health. The second seeks to understand violent political conflict between the state and marginal communities in a manner that takes into account the dynamic relationship between individual actions, political opportunity structures, and socioeconomic structures. Jonathan’s published research concentrates on South Asia, but he is interested in developing and transitional countries more generally. He is currently working on a project that uses a variety of qualitative and quantitative data to investigate the political determinants of polio and specifically the relationship between Islamist insurgency and polio in countries including Nigeria, Somalia, Syria, Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Academics teaching on the programme in departments across QMUL

Professor Kavita Datta

Professor of Development Geography

Kavita Datta is Professor of Development Geography and Director of the Centre for the Study of Migration at Queen Mary University of London. Spanning development and economic geography and migration studies, her research focuses on transnational migration, financialisation and migrants financial practices. In addition to the Migration Leadership Team project, Kavita’s other projects are exploring the financialisation and professionalization of remittance intermediaries after the financial crisis in London (Disciplining the Remittance Marketplace? PI, Leverhulme Trust); migrants transnational inheritance norms and practices (Transmitting (in)equality across borders: Shifting Inheritance Practices and Outcomes among Indian Migrants in London, ESRC-CASE) and the arts-migration nexus and the politics of waiting among young refugees (Athens-Paris-London, Co-I, QMUL). With research expertise in the UK, Southern Africa and India, Kavita has published numerous journal articles and book chapters. She is author of Migrants and their Money: Surviving Financial Exclusion in London (Policy Press and University of Chicago Press, Bristol and Chicago, 2012); co-author of Global Cities at Work: New Migrant Divisions of Labour (Pluto Press, London, 2010) and co-editor of Housing Finance in Developing Countries (Routledge, London, 1999).


Dr Parvati Nair

Professor of Hispanic, Culture & Migration studies

Professor Nair is Professor of Hispanic, Cultural and Migration Studies at QMUL and the Founding Director of the United Nations University Institute in Barcelona, Spain, which focuses on globalization, culture and mobility. Her research is in Cultural Studies, with a particular interest in theories and representations of migration, mobility, urban spaces, displacement, ethnicity and gender.

She writes on photography, film and music in these contexts and relies on an interdisciplinary approach. She is the Principal Editor of Crossings: Journal of Migration and Culture and on the editorial board of the Hispanic Research Journal.


Dr Andrea Pallinski

Lecturer, Centre for Psychiatry

Ms Palinski is a lecturer at the Centre for Psychiatry, Wolfson Institute of Preventive Medicine, QMUL. After working as a clinical case manager for mentally ill adolescents and adults for several years in the US, she completed her Master’s in Medical Anthropology. In 2008, she was appointed lead of the Cultural Consultation Service (CCS) King’s Fund Project in the South London and Maudsley NHS Trust. The CCS utilizes anthropological methodology and theory within psychiatric settings in an attempt to address issues of cultural inequality through the reduction of misunderstanding and conflict in the clinical encounter. Her current research is focussed on inequalities in mental health and the role of shared narratives in the intercultural clinical encounter.



Dr Philippa Williams

Senior Lecturer in Human Geography


Dr Prakash Shah

Reader in Culture and Law




The Learning Resource centre has 200 networked PCs and is open to students round the clock, there are dedicated workstations for postgraduate students.

You will also have access to Queen Mary’s comprehensive libraries, including the Postgraduate Reading Room, and The British Library can also be accessed as a research resource.

You will have access to a range of specialist facilities including: medical libraries located at the Royal London and St Bart's hospitals and at the main College campus at Mile End.


This new and updated MSc programme is available for study for one year full-time, or two years part-time.

In the first semester, modules develop the key concepts and research methods and analysis. These present you with relevant methodological issues and challenges while providing interdisciplinary foundations. In the second semester, you gain a more detailed understanding of areas relevant to your interests through specialist and elective modules.

The programme consists of eight 15 credit modules and a dissertation of 60 credits. In Semester 1, students take four core modules, one of which is a specialist module on migration and health. In Semester 2, students take one compulsory-specialist module and three electives

Core modules

  • Epidemiology and Statistics
  • Evidence, Policy and Global Health
  • Migrants, Inequality and the Cultural Politics of Health
  • Health Systems, Policy and Practice
  • Dissertation

Specialist module

  • Governance of Migration, Displacement and Healthcare

Optional modules

  • Gender, Sexuality and Health
  • Primary Care and Global Public Health
  • Anthropology and Global Health
  • Health Systems Theory, Policy and Political Economy
  • Global Health, Governance and Law
  • Ecological Global Health
  • Human Rights and Public Health
  • Globalisation and Contemporary Medical Ethics
  • Understanding and Managing Human Resources for Global Health
  • Economics of Development
  • Human Resource Management in the Public Services

Our core modules are studied in the first semester only, from the third week of September to mid December.

Optional and specialist modules are studied in the second semester only, from the second week of January to the end of March.


Undertaking a master’s programme is a serious commitment, with weekly contact hours being in addition to numerous hours of independent learning and research needed to progress at the required level. When coursework or examination deadlines are approaching independent learning hours may need to increase significantly. Each module you study is worth 15 credits. University guidelines suggest that for every 15 credits, a student will need to study for 150 hours. You will usually have one 1-hour lecture and one 2-hour seminar per module, per week. You should expect to be on campus at least 3 days a week.


Our part-time study options mean you can complete this MSc over two years. This MSc programme consist of four core modules, one specialist module and three optional modules and finally a dissertation, worth a total of 180 credits.

A part time student is required to take two of the core modules worth 15 credits in semester one of the first year. In the second semester of the first year, a part time student will take one specialist module and one optional module of 15 credits each. The first year teaching is completed by early April, and final assessments submitted by the end of May.
In the second year a part time student will take the other two core modules worth 15 credits in semester one, and in the second semester they would take a further two optional modules worth 15 credits. In the second year a part time student would research and write their 10,000 to 12,000 word dissertation, worth 60 credits. This is usually submitted in August.

University guidelines suggest that for every 15 credits, a student will need to study for 150 hours. This is worth considering when thinking about studying part time. You will usually have one 1-hour lecture and one 2-hour seminar per module per week.

Distance Learning

This programme is not currently available as distance learning, although we hope to make this available in the future. Contact us for further information.



Entry requirements

You will normally need at least a 2.1 honours degree or GPA 3.2/4.0 or GPA 3.4/5.0 or international equivalent in a relevant subject, such as medicine, the health sciences, nursing or the social sciences. Applicants with a 2.2 honours degree with relevant experience within the field are welcomed to apply. We also welcome applications from those who have studied a less directly related subject at undergraduate level, but who can demonstrate interest and motivation in this area.

International applicants

Students from outside of the UK help form a global community here at Queen Mary. For detailed country specific entry requirements please visit the International section of our website. If your first language is not English, you must provide evidence of your English language proficiency.

Find out more about our English language entry requirements.

If you do not meet language or scholarly requirements it might be possible for you to undertake foundation or pre-sessional programmes that will prepare you for the masters programme. For more information, please contact the Admissions Office.

Learning and teaching

As a student at Queen Mary, you will play an active part in your acquisition of skills and knowledge. Teaching is by a mixture of formal lectures and small group seminars. The seminars are designed to generate informed discussion around set topics, and may involve student presentations, group exercise and role-play as well as open discussion. We take pride in the close and friendly working relationship we have with our students. You are assigned an Academic Adviser who will guide you in both academic and pastoral matters throughout your time at Queen Mary.

Independent Study

For every hour spent in classes you will be expected to complete further hours of independent study. Your individual study time could be spent preparing for, or following up on formal study sessions; reading; producing written work; completing projects; and revising for examinations.

The direction of your individual study will be guided by the formal study sessions you attend, along with your reading lists and assignments. However, we expect you to demonstrate an active role in your own learning by reading widely and expanding your own knowledge, understanding and critical ability.

Independent study will foster in you the ability to identify your own learning needs and determine which areas you need to focus on to become proficient in your subject area. This is an important transferable skill and will help to prepare you for the transition to working life.


Assessment takes a number of different forms including coursework essays, assignments and presentations, and examinations. Students must achieve an overall pass in the taught element in order to progress to their dissertation, which must also be passed for a degree to be awarded.


You will also be assessed on a supervised 10-12,000-word dissertation.


Tuition fees for Home and EU students

2019/20 Academic Year

Full time £10,440
Part time £5,220

Tuition fees for International students

2019/20 Academic Year

Full time £17,100
Part time £8,550

Part time fees are charged per annum over two years for a two year programme and per annum over three years for a three year programme. A percentage increase may be applied to the fees in years two and three.

This increase is defined each year and published on the intranet and in the Tuition Fee Regulations. A 3% increase was applied to the unregulated university fees in 2019/20. Further information can be viewed on our University Fees webpage, including details about annual increases.


There are a number of sources of funding available for Masters students.

These include a significant package of competitive Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) bursaries and scholarships in a range of subject areas, as well as external sources of funding.

Queen Mary bursaries and scholarships

We offer a range of bursaries and scholarships for Masters students including competitive scholarships, bursaries and awards, some of which are for applicants studying specific subjects.

Find out more about QMUL bursaries and scholarships.

Alternative sources of funding

Home/EU students can apply for a range of other funding, such as Professional and Career Development Loans, and Employer Sponsorship, depending on their circumstances and the specific programme of study.

Overseas students may be eligible to apply for a range of external scholarships and we also provide information about relevant funding providers in your home country on our country web pages.

Download our Postgraduate Funding Guide for detailed information about postgraduate funding options for Home/EU students.

Read more about alternative sources of funding for Home/EU students and for Overseas students.

Tel: +44 (0)20 7882 5079
email bursaries@qmul.ac.uk

Other financial help on offer at Queen Mary

We offer one to one specialist support on all financial and welfare issues through our Advice and Counselling Service, which you can access as soon as you have applied for a place at Queen Mary.

Our Advice and Counselling Service also has lots of Student Advice Guides on all aspects of finance including:

Tel: +44 (0)20 7882 8717



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