Human Security


About The Field

The human security field brings together the concerns and practices that deal with the interconnection between freedom from fear and freedom from want. This covers a broad variety of issues and practices, but they all share a) a desire to cross boundaries between fields of social change until now usually treated separately and b) a strong ultimate focus on the inclusive well-being of all human beings.

Note: The Human Security field will convert to a Comparative Politics field at the PhD level and for PhD Comprehensive Exams. PhD students are required to take P201 and at least one of the courses or two of the modules that are listed below as options for the Second Required Course for PhD Students. PhD Students are not required to take D232. MALD students who wish to offer any of the PhD course options for this field will be required to petition the Committee on Student Academic Programs (CSAP).


Below is a representative portrait of curricular requirements for this Field of Study. Core requirements are subject to periodic updates and modifications; current Fletcher students should refer to the Registrar's course bulletin and to Fletcher Connect for definitive requirements in a given academic year.

Core Requirements for the Field

  • The Human Security Field of Study requires the completion of a minimum of three course credits, one of which must be D232: Gender, Culture, Conflict in Complex Humanitarian Emergencies. Elective offerings are listed below.
  • Students have the option of completing additional courses to receive a Certificate in Human Security.
  • For PHD students only this field is Human Security/Comparative Politics and requires the completion of a minimum of four courses including P201: Comparative Politics, and at least one course with a circle notation (o) next to it, as well as two other courses from the field.

  • Elective Courses

    We encourage you to visit our course catalog to get a better understanding of Fletcher, our curriculum, and our students.

    Current Students & Alumni

    Graduates of The Fletcher School's field of human security are in great demand by employers in the public, private and nonprofit sectors. These are a sample of Fletcher current students and alums:

    Manjula Dissanayake Fletcher
    Amy Patanasinth, The Fletcher School
    Cory Felder Fletcher
    Manjula Dissanayake
    MALD 12
    Founder, Educate Lanka Foundation, Inc.

       Read Manjula's story

    Amy Patanasinth
    MALD 11
    Associate, Chemonics International

       Read Amy's story

    Cory Felder
    MALD 16
    Human Security, International Negotiation and Conflict Resolution

       Read Cory's story

    Outside the Classroom

    • New Start Training: Supporting Multilingual Children and Immigrant & Refugee Families
    • Human Security Speaker Series: Brown Bag Lunch with Prof. Oliver Bakewell
    • Thomas de Waal - Great Catastrophe: Armenians, Turks, and the Politics of Genocide
    • Diplomatic Tradecraft in Conflict Zones - Practical Skills for Serving in Countries in Crisis
    • Human Security Speaker Series: Vladimir Zhagora
    • IMAGe: Mass Atrocities and the Response to Their Public Health Consequences
    • Understanding Boko Haram
    • Weapons of Mass Migration
    • Not Who We Are: Public Screening and Panel Discussion
    • The Institute for Human Security: "R2P's Unfinished Journey: The Lingering Promise of Prevention"
    • PrEP, PEP, and the State of HIV Prevention: A Conversation with Carl Sciortino
    • Presentation and Discussion on the Indian Diaspora in the United States
    • Memories of Violence
    • The Politics of Crime in Mexico - John Bailey
    • Exit, Voice...Return? Return Migration, Civic Engagement, and Democracy in Mexico
    • Context- and Conflict-Sensitive Interviewing with Roxanne Krystalli
    • A Conversation on Gender, Conflict, and Peace with Cynthia Enloe
    • ISIS Persecution of the Yezidis in Northern Iraq
    • Embodying Activism in Violent Conflict: Citizen-journalist Qusai Zakarya Reports from the Heart of Syria
    • International Rescue Committee - Monrovia, Liberia
    • Save the Children in Uganda - Lira, Northern Uganda
    • Winrock International - Kathmandu, Nepal
    • The Asia Foundation - Colombo, Sri Lanka
    • Sanlapp - Calcutta, India
    • International Committee of the Red Cross - Dakar, Senegal
    • Danish Refugee Council - Hatay and Sanliurfa Provinces, Turkey
    • United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) - Jordan
    • United Nations Action for Cooperation Against Trafficking in Persons (UN-ACT) - Bangkok, Thailand
    • Center for Civilians in Conflict - Washington, DC
    • "Where Peace Begins: The Role of Local People and Communities in Transforming Economies of War"
    • "When Do We Get to Peace? Patterns of Gender-Based Violence in Post-Conflict Liberia"
    • "Achieving Complex National Security Missions: A Multidisciplinary Approach to the Design and Management of Collaborative Institutions"
    • "Towards a Framework for Culturally-Sensitive Psychosocial Interventions in the Population of Internally Displaced Sudanese"
    • “Beyond Isolation: Moving Past the Refugee Camp and Connecting to Home”
    • “Food Security, Monoculture, and the Black Box: Impact and Causal Mechanisms of the Land Husbandry, Water Harvesting, and Hillside Irrigation Program in Rwanda"
    • “Migration by Choice, Not Necessity? Shifts in the Migration and Development Discourse since 2007”
    • “Progress, Opportunity, Prosperity? A Case Study of the Digitization of a Conditional Cash Transfer Program in Mexico”
    • The Fletcher Syria Crisis Working Group
    • Fletcher Food Policy Club
    • Fletcher Humanitarian Action Society (FSIS)
    • Global Health Group
    • Global Women
    • Human Rights Project
    • The Journal of Humanitarian Assistance
    • International Development Group
    • International Migration Group
    • Praxis: The Fletcher Journal of Human Security

    A Fletcher education is highly customizable, and each student may decide on a different academic trajectory to suit his or her own professional and academic goals. To get a better sense of how these individual curricular decisions can play out, we asked recent students in their final semester to talk about their goals, their classes, and the decisions made during their Fletcher career. Meet Nathan:

    Pre-Fletcher Experience

    Peace Corps Volunteer, Niger
    Communications & Programme Assistant, Plan Niger

    Fields of Study

    Human Security Public & NGO Management

    Capstone Topic

    Defining Success and Failure in Development NGOs

    Post-Fletcher Professional Goals

    Project, program, and policy work in international development

    Read about Nathan's curriculur path.

    Learn From The Experts: Fletcher Faculty

    Eileen Babbitt, Professor of Practice of International Conflict Management at Tufts Fletcher School"The work I do in practice inspires the kind of questions that I’m interested in researching and teaching. Right now, the important questions have to do with how to pursue both peace and justice."

    Eileen Babbitt, Professor of Practice of International Conflict Management, Director of the Institute for Human Security

    Other faculty with expertise in the field:

    Louis Aucoin, Professor of Practice at Tufts Fletcher School Diana Chigas, Professor of Practice of International Negotiation and Conflict Resolution Kim Wilson, Lecturer, International Business, Tufts Fletcher School
    Louis Aucoin Diana Chigas Karen Jacobsen Kim Wilson