Master’s Thesis Defense

After five months of working intensively, we finally submitted our master’s thesis and more recently we presented our work in the thesis defense seminar. The master’s thesis, or the degree project as it is otherwise called, is undoubtedly one of the defining elements of the whole master’s programme. I have felt that this last semester dedicated to the thesis was also an opportunity for us to make use of the knowledge we have been exposed to and the skills we have gained during the past semesters, preceding the thesis project. Our master’s programme in Disaster Risk Management and Climate Change Adaptation is interdisciplinary and through a variety of courses, we have learned about many different aspects of our field of study, creating a comprehensive understanding of many processes and components of disaster risk management and climate change adaptation. However, the master’s thesis requires students to focus on a specific topic and as we learned during the process, a specific and narrow research aim can be more effective.

I was fascinated by the many interesting topics my classmates explored for the thesis project. Personally, I am particularly interested in international development and in capacity development processes employed for disaster risk reduction. Therefore, I decided to write my thesis about ‘Theory of Change’ which is an approach used for carrying out more effective development initiatives in the context of the increased complexity and uncertainty. These past months have been quite demanding, especially as the deadlines were approaching and the pressure was increasing. However, now that the process is complete, I have a good feeling of accomplishment. At the same time, I feel confident in the work that I have done since I have read extensively about my topic, I have looked at it critically and finally have put in the paper all the reflections and analysis – it is a demanding process.

The master’s thesis has been important for me and any other student. I could go on and on talking tirelessly about the process and the product. However, I would like to be succinct and share with you one of my favorite sections of the thesis: the acknowledgments. Perhaps the most heartfelt section there is 😀

Talk to you soon,

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