Job opportunities

Most of the IOB students already have professional experience before studying at IOB. Our alumni survey shows that IOB graduates mostly (continue to) work in:

  • the government sector (24 %)
  • international organisations (19 %)
  • NGOs (13 %)
  • higher education/research institutes (13 %)

Some of the most recurrent employers among IOB graduates are within:

  • the government sector (e.g. Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Planning)
  • parliaments
  • inter/supranational organisations (e.g. United Nations, African Union, European commission, Asian/Africa/Interamerican Development Bank)
  • national and international NGOs (e.g. Transparency International, Oxfam, Action Aid)
  • higher education/research and bi- or multilateral donor agencies (e.g. BTC, World Bank, USAID, GTZ)

The survey also revealed that ninety-one per cent of IOB alumni felt that IOB studies had prepared them adequately for their subsequent careers. Most of them (67 %) even occupied a higher position within the organisation after studying at IOB than prior to their IOB masters, while 28 per cent continued at the same level.

Doctoral programmes leading to a PhD

IOB offers a multi-disciplinary Doctoral Programme, leading to a PhD in Development Studies administered by IOB and granted by the University of Antwerp. In addition, IOB cooperates with the Faculty of Business and Economics and the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Antwerp to offer disciplinary PhD programmes in the field of development.

The IOB PhD programme is related to the research agenda of IOB. Inevitably, IOB can only offer high quality guidance to a limited number of PhD-students and therefore adheres to a strict policy in considering and accepting applications. Many PhD students have institutional links with IOB (e.g. as an alumnus of an IOB Master’s programme, as a researcher from a partner institute, or as a collaborator of a development agency that has commissioned research from IOB) and are invited to join the research team on this basis. IOB will however also consider applications from other candidates provided they have already secured the (self)finance for their PhD and provided they convince us that their research project fits with the research agenda of a senior staff member of IOB. Therefore, spontaneous applications from students without previous relation to the IOB and without funding and the approval of an IOB supervisor for their PhD project will not be considered.